Generally, Covent Garden is an area that us Londoners tend to avoid. But, believe it or not, there are some hidden (or not-so-hidden) gems in this neck of the woods.
1. Milk Train
Ice cream served on beautiful clouds of candyfloss. What could possibly look better on your Instagram feed?
Find Milk Train at 44 Bedford St, WC2E
2. Bunga Bunga
This is the story all about how… Bunga Bunga’s patron, Silvio Berlusconi, went from Italian Prime Minister to an international scandal – all told through the medium of burlesque and pizza.
Find Bunga Bunga at 167 Drury Lane, WC2B 5PG.
Sticks’n’Sushi serve seriously beautiful sushi, with a bit of a Nordic touch. They have plenty of sharing plates, salads and yakitori sticks – and even a selection of dishes for those who aren’t so keen on fish.
Find Sticks’n’Sushi at 11 Henrietta St, WC2E 8PY.
The Porterhouse is the biggest bar in London and is split across TWELVE different levels. It’s the offshoot of a genuine Irish brewery with genuine Irish beers (including the finest stout in the world, true story) without the cringey Irish-pub-that’s-not-in-Ireland vibe.
Find The Porterhouse at 21-22 Maiden Lane, WC2E 7NA.
5. Clos Maggiore
There’s a reason this French restaurant in Covent Garden is continuously voted the most romantic restaurant in London. With a glass roof showing off a starry night sky and enough twinkly lights and greenery to make you feel like you’re eating in a fairy kingdom, it’s not surprising that a meal at Clos Maggiore often ends with an engagement ring… no pressure. When you book, be sure to specify if you want to be seated in the fairy room, otherwise you could end up disappointed.
Find Clos Maggiore at 33 King Street, WC2E 8JD
6. La Bodega Negra
From the outside, Bodega Negra looks like a shifty sex shop, but enter the restaurant and you’ll be greeted by excellent Mexican food and a huge range of tequila and mezcal.
Find Bodega Negra at 16 Moor Street, W1D 5NH
7. La Goccia by Petersham Nurseries
Petersham Nurseries is an internationally prized garden centre in Richmond, known for their glasshouse restaurant and wide selection of plants. Buuuut they’ve opened up a brand new floral space in Covent Garden with a beautiful Italian restaurant that serves a bunch of Italian small plates and botanically-inspired cocktails. Besides the restaurant, this new floral paradise–which occupies 16,000 sq ft–also includes a home and garden store, a delicatessen/wine cellar and a florist.
27-31 King Street, WC2E 8JB
8. Neal’s Yard
Neal’s Yard is without a doubt one of London’s most instagrammable locations. It’s beautiful, colourful buildings include the Wild Food Café, an amazing raw and wholefood veggie cafe, and Homeslice, the undeniable Gods of pizza.
9. Champagne + Fromage
Oui nous savons, what a combination! Join Champagne + Fromage in their magnifique French bistro for an evening of cheese and charcuterie, all washed down with a classy glass of champers. The focus is on délicieuse cuisine (excuse our French) so expect lots of camembert, saucisson and other delicious French stuff. Bon appétit!
Find Champagne + Fromage at 22 Wellington St, WC2E 7DD
10. London Transport Museum
Follow up a nerdy museum visit with a London Underground latte or a cupcake. Because the only thing better than learning about the tube roundel is eating it…
Covent Garden Piazza, WC2E 7BB
Rules was established in 1798, making it the oldest restaurant in London. It serves proper British grub and specialises in classic game, oysters, pies and puddings. The tables of the famed Covent Garden restaurant have sat some pretty important people, including Charles Dickens and H.G. Wells. It’s also appeared in various novels by the likes of Evelyn Waugh and Penelope Lively.
Find Rules at 34-35 Maiden Lane, WC2E 7LB
12. Rock & Sole Plaice
Besides having one of the greatest names in the London restaurant index, Rock & Sole Plaice also serve some pretty rockin’ fish and chips.
Find Rock & Sole Plaice at 47 Endell Street, WC2H 9AJ