It doesn’t matter where you might be in the world, there’s nothing better than finding food that hits the spot. And the food in London is a wonderful experience. No matter what you might be searching for, you can find it in the bustling metropolis of London.
The best of British
As London is the capital city of the UK, let’s first talk about the traditional food that you’ll find here. Food in Britain tends to be tasty, hearty and big on comfort! A classic dish is ‘fish n chips,’ and you’ll find shops – known affectionately as ‘the chippy’ – all over London. Here you can find a deep fried breaded or battered fish of your choice, served with chunky fried chips (a very different way of serving potatoes to the French fries you find the world over) and, if you’re of a mind, mushy peas…
Fish n chips is traditionally seasoned with salt and vinegar and served in a paper wrap. In years gone by this used to be newspaper, but times change and now they’re wrapped in white paper.
As fish n chips is such a national institution, it’s no wonder that there are some restaurants in London that specialise in just this. Some of the best can be found in the Time Out Magazine’s guide to the best fish and chip restaurants.
Other British favourites include various different pies, such as steak and kidney, beef and ale, chicken and mushroom or plain steak pie. Traditionally these are served with mashed potato, and known simply as ‘pie and mash.’ There are some fabulous pie and mash shops, as well as restaurants. Some of the better ones can be found on the View London website.
Another dish that you won’t fail to come across is the traditional Sunday Roast. This comprises of roast beef (or perhaps pork, gammon or lamb), with roast potatoes, roast vegetables such as parsnips and carrots, and a selection of other vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, leeks or cabbage. This is served up with a hearty Yorkshire pudding or two, and covered in gravy. Delicious…
The British pub is something that people talk about the whole world over, and once you find a good one you’ll be likely to agree. However, it’s not just a case of finding the nearest pub, because the typical British pub is now rather more difficult to find. Many have been taken over by chains such as Weatherspoons which, although adequate, certainly aren’t the best representation of pubs and pub grub that you can find.
A good method of discovering some of the best pubs that London has to offer is to check out the Good Pub Guide where you can search by area and region to find some of the best pubs that London and the country has to offer.
Food on a global scale
London is perhaps one of the most diverse cities in the world for food, and you can find restaurants serving authentic dishes from all over the planet. If you like Chinese food, then head to China Town where you’ll find a multitude of restaurants to suit all budgets. There are also some excellent Chinese supermarkets here as well if you fancy stocking up on Asian ingredients to create your own dishes at home.
If you like Middle Eastern food, then head to the Edgware road, the heart of London’s Arabic community. Wander down the street, taking a look at the menus of the many authentic restaurants, and you could almost be in the Middle East. If the weather permits, you’ll be greeted by men sitting outside smoking large pipes filled with various fruit flavoured tobacco.
Whatever food you’re looking for, you can find it in London. And there’s some wonderful fine dining to be had as well, and for those in the know, this might not have to cost the earth. Find some of the best London restaurants using The Good Food Guide or the AA guide.
Savvy diners will sign up with discount websites such as Groupon, Voucher Codes or Wowcher to get some fantastic discount codes. These change on a weekly basis, and might include 2 for 1 deals or a discount off your final bill. They’re definitely worth having, and can mean that you can eat out more often, simply because the bills are less.
The most popular British dish
This is a subject open to debate, as various newspapers continue to write differing opinions. However, it might surprise you to know that it’s clear that the favourite dish in the UK is not one of the traditional English recipes. In fact, it’s not a dish that hails from its own shores at all.
It seems that the meal that most Brits reach for on a regular basis is none other than….. chicken tikka masala. Or perhaps a Cantonese chicken stir fry. Or perhaps a Jalfrazi. Whichever it is, it’s either Indian or Chinese food that’s wormed its way into the psyche of the British people. So it should come as no surprise that this means that you can find some excellent Asian restaurants in London.
And for when you’re in a rush…
Sometimes, when speed is of the essence, then nothing can beat a take-out meal or a drive-thru. And London is certainly well equipped for both of these options. Indian, Chinese, pizza and other take-out options are available on almost every street. And if there’s not one in walking distance in London, then just pick up the phone as most offer free delivery.
And all the American fast food restaurants can be found, such as McDonalds, Burger King and Kentucky Fried Chicken etc. Many are open 24 hours, and most have a drive through. It might not be haute cuisine, but at least you know what you’re getting. And sometimes a Big Mac can just hit the spot….
Need more information?
Although food is an important aspect of any area in the world in which you choose to live, there’s plenty of other information that it’s vital to know. From Travel to Things to Do, House Hunting to the Cost of Living, MovingtoLondon.net provides you with the most up to date, current data that’s essential to know in order to ensure the transition to your new life in London is as stress free as possible.