In the few short weeks of warm and sunny weather that we have in London, the crowds descend on the few restaurants who have tables outdoor. We all want to reminisce about our summer holidays in Greece, Spain and italy where al freco dining is de riguer. Tables under shady trees to while away a Sunday afternoon with a long tall cool drink and watch the world go by.
Of course, the most obvious places are decent local pubs with a large beer gardens but there are lots of other places with terrific food too. In London, we have majestic terraces overlooking the Thames, canal side restaurants with a few tables over the water, quiet gardens with an abundance of summer flowers to hidden courtyards in unexpected areas.
New St Grill, Broadgate, London EC
Just off Broadgate in the City, you would not expect to find somewhere that is quiet and they serve unlimited Bloody Mary’s on Sunday. Food choices are manly, with lots of steak and the like but you get a choice of Sunday roast too. They only have a few outside tables so it might be wise to book ahead.
The New Street Grill
16a New Street,
London EC2M 4T
020 3503 0785
The Hampshire Hog, Hammersmith, London W
For a relaxed and unhurried weekend lunch in West London check out the Hog. This gastro pub has a massive beer garden and sometimes live music in the evenings. It is a venture by the former team at the Engineer in Primrose Hill and it has been a welcome addition to sparse decent dining options in that area. The menu choices are along the lines of standard gastro pub fare.
The Hampshire Hog
227 King St London
London W6 9JT
020 8748 3391
Iberica La Terraz, Canary Wharf, London E14
If you are around the Canary Wharf area, then Iberica’s summer pop up on the Terraz is a must visit. Enjoy top tapas, spanish wines, a jug of sangria in hte middle of Canada Square. It is probably one of the more unique venues in London this summer.
Iberica La Terraza Restaurant
London, E14 4QQ
0207 6368 650
Tom’s Terrace, Somerset House
Michelin Starred Tom Aitken’s outpost at the back of Somerset House is in a terrific location. Tables set under shady umbrellas with unobstructed views overlooking the Thames is a rarity in this town. I’ve added this place for the location and the view and would suggest it as a good spot for a pre dinner drink. Together with Tom’s reputation and his consultancy on the menu, this makes for a very popular choice for lunch or even dinner. I have only been there for drinks and can’t vouch for the food. The food reviews have been mostly unfavourable, so proceed at your own risk.
020 7845 4646
St Christopher’s Place
There are a lot of restaurants in this pedestrian zone just off Oxford St and they have al fresco tables all year round. Even in winter the tables outside Turkish Restaurant Sofra are packed with people braving the cold under the gas heaters.This area is a respite from the throngs of Oxford Street and offer a few choices of food from a French Creperie to the Italian chain Caruluccio and the Turkish Sofra.
St Christophers Pl,
London W1U 1LT
The Victoria Pub and Hotel, Sheen, Richmond
Slightly away from the centre of town, there is a brilliant pub and the restaurant is run by Paul Merrett.
It is a pub with a few stylish contemporary rooms and is a big hit with locals. The menu reads more like a contemporary bistro than that of a pub. The dishes are very well executed and the portions are very generous. The outdoor space is dominated by the biggest patio umbrella I have seen and even when the weather is not that great, you can sit outside without getting wet. They regularly host weddings and parties in this outdoor space. If you have not been here, it would be well worth a trip to explore.
The Victoria Pub and Hotel,
10 W Temple Sheen
London SW14 7RT
020 8876 4238
If you have some other favourite al fresco dining spaces that I have not listed here, do share in the comments below.
This post was sponsored by Barclaycard