Us Londoners are proud of our drinking and dining options. And with restaurants and cocktail bars that are frequently showered with acclaim from across the UK and abroad, we’ve got every right to be. Now we’re holding steady on the international front by laying claim to two spots in this years World’s 50 Best Restaurants rundown. Coming in at 35th and 49th place, respectively, are Shoreditch stalwart The Clove Club and St James’s institution Ikoyi.
With a list encompassing 38 cities and towns, and 23 countries, London was one of only 8 cities with multiple inclusions. By country, Spain and Italy dominated the World’s 50 Best Restaurants, with 7 and 6 inclusions respectively. Meanwhile, by city, Copenhagen, Lima, Tokyo, and Paris were at the top with 3 restaurants making the list each.
The Clove Club, Shoreditch (#35)
A frequent inclusion on the list, London gourmands will no doubt be very familiar with The Clove Club. Maybe it’s on your ever-growing list of places to try out in London, or maybe you’ve already been and never forgotten about it. Or maybe you’re lucky enough to be able to regularly eat there – in which case we are incredibly jealous.
The Clove Club is housed in Grade II-listed Shoreditch Town Hall. They’ve perfected the classic, laid-back East London vibe, matched by casual, but not at all inattentive, service. They serve a constantly evolving tasting menu of 8 dishes for £195, or a shorter tasting menu of 6 dishes for £155. Both menus also offer wine pairings for an additional cost. With a focus on modern British food, and seasonal produce, you might not know what’s on offer until you arrive, but you’ll be in very, very good hands.
Ikoyi, St James’s (#49)
Ikoyi is hidden away on a neighbourhood corner in St James’s, but it’s well worth seeking out. Their menu is spice-based and leans on micro-seasonal ingredients: all ingredients are served at the peak of their flavour. They also draw from the cooking traditions and ingredients of sub-Saharan West Africa. Easily their signature dish is their smoked jollof rice, which is almost always on the menu in some guise.
While the full evening tasting menu costs in the realm of £200 per person, with drinks pairings available for a further cost, Ikoyi does also offer up a relatively affordable £75 lunch menu on Thursdays and Fridays. Get in quick, though, as they’ll be closing for the summer from the middle of August to September 1.
Both Clove Club and Ikoyi have also been awarded Two MICHELIN Stars. Act quickly to secure a booking as they’re both sure to be even more popular than they already are! Head to Ikoyi’s website or The Clove Club’s website to secure a booking.