London’s iconic food scene will help tackle the January blues

Whether you’re taking on the challenge of Veganuary or looking to celebrate the Chinese New Year, London’s restaurants cater to every taste and need, and will cheer you up in no time.

With al-fresco dining on beautiful rooftops and terraces to authentic restaurants, Visit London has pulled together the top London eateries that will help you tackle those blues this January and beyond (while keeping safe and social distancing). This list is curated as part of the Mayor of London’s ‘Let’s Do London’ campaign – launched by The Mayor of London, Visit London and the capital’s tourism and hospitality industry which looks to host visitors in the wonderful city of London in a safe manner.

London’s vegan hotspots

Giving Veganuary a go? If you’re a lover of pizza and worried the dairy-free version might not be one for you, look no further. Purezza is the UK’s first vegan pizzeria and their pizzas never disappoint! Even better, they’re dedicated to making sure all their products are high quality and sourced sustainably.

Ever have one of those days where you’re craving some deliciously greasy junk food? Well, you’re in luck. Biff’s can satisfy any cravings you might have. Living up to their motto ‘making vegan good for your bad self’, tuck into their signature and widely-famous jackfruit fried burger and wings – after trying these two award winning dishes, you will never look back.

If you’re someone who’s looking for a healthier vegan alternative, Mildred’s is the perfect place for you. While it’s known for its tasty plant-free menu all year round, this Veganuary, they’re bringing brand new specials to the menu, including a Katsu hot dog, Plum Tofu Gua Bao buns and White Miso broth. There’s even brand new mocktails for anyone doing dry Jan.

For those with a sweeter tooth, wander down to Vida Bakery on Brick Lane to be spoilt for choice by their delicious 100% plant-based cakes and mouth-watering sweet treats.

Chinese Lunar New Year

The Year of the Tiger is ready to roar to life at the end of the month. London is the perfect place to celebrate the Chinese Lunar New Year with the multitude of delicious eateries. If you’re looking to fully immerse yourself in an outstanding Chinese dining experience, look no further than Imperial Treasure on St James’ Place. Indulge in their award winning authentic Chinese delicacies, from Dim Sum to the best Peking Duck in London.

If you’re looking for something adventurous to get your taste buds tingling, then Barshu Restaurant in the heart of Soho may be the one for you. Praised with its very own Michelin star, Barshu offers Chinese cuisine Szechuan style. The delicious authentic dishes range from stir fried lamb to stir fried frog’s legs for those who fancy trying something different.

Located right off the buzz of Carnaby Street, Ping Pong is the place to visit for Dim Sum and cocktails. Ping Pong pride themselves on serving top notch food, living by the mantra ‘fresh, flavoursome and fun’. Their freshly crafted dishes offer everything from classic rice dishes to wonton soups and their widely raved about dumplings.

You simply cannot get away with visiting Chinatown without trying your luck getting a table in Duck and Rice . For what can only be described as game-changing food, Duck and Rice offers world class Cantonese cuisine all from a buzzy, atmospheric Soho London pub. Offering a variety of both cocktails and beers, their food is delicious yet adventurous with dishes from Kung Po chicken to venison puffs. Why not treat your family or friends to an evening of games during your dining experience, including bingo or drag queen quiz nights?

Looking for some delicious authentic Chinese food to round out your day? Why not try Plum Valley in Soho where you can make the most of the fresh innovative dishes in their outdoor and indoor areas. Pick from a wide array of dishes from Dim Sum to braised lobster, all labours of love by this family run establishment.  

Al fresco dining

London has plenty of options to help you stay safe while socialising. With a big coat, a toasty patio heater and warm conversation, it will feel like summer is just around the corner. 

For an evening of relaxation and sophistication whilst also maintaining social distancing guidelines, why not head over to The Dorchester Rooftop, Park Lane. Open to the public since April 2021, you can enjoy an evening of exceptional food from top chefs whilst watching the sunset over on Hyde Park. Try out the delicious menu of fresh and seasonal dishes, from afternoon tea to their tasting menu, whilst you sit out on the terrace with heaters and blankets.  

Fancy watching the sunset over The Shard surrounded by your closest friends? Then head over to Nine Lives Alley for a night of good vibes, delicious cocktails and Mexican food. This hidden gem is nestled within a cobbled alley with a heated terrace and seating – the perfect evening awaits you.   

Located in the heart of East London, Mare Street Market is the perfect cosy destination thanks to its gorgeous ambience of fairy-lit terraces, heated lamps and hearty comfort food from burgers to brunch. Spend your Saturday afternoon catching up with friends, drinking delicious cocktails and indulging in the extensive menu.