From full-on sit down banquets to sharing platters for those after a drink and a chinwag, The Drift is an inviting restaurant in amongst the skyscrapers. This self-professed “sanctuary in the heart of the city” is a joint of quirky collectibles and hidden alcoves, and it's a frontrunner when it comes to relaxed dinner and drinks in east London.
Restaurants in East London
Scouting out the best places to eat in east London? We’re hardly surprised; the number of unique dining experiences, pop-up supperclubs and downright delicious hotspots out east continues to shoot through the roof. Have a scan of our recommended restaurants in east London and discover something delicious today, or check out our complete guide to eating out in London for further inspiration.
Stylish and relaxed, this restaurant in East London offers more than just a comfortable atmosphere. With delicious Italian food, a fantastic cocktail menu and even an on-sit gin distillery, it's an exciting addition to the Hackney dining scene.
London Steakhouse Co is both a stylish cocktail bar and a great restaurant near Liverpool Street. Serving up a mouth-watering range of British dishes, their steak cuts take pride of place on their menu, having been sourced from master butcher and Royal warrant holder Aubrey Allen.
Serving up traditional pub grub with a contemporary twist as well as an array of great craft beers and wines, The Cow has got it all going on pub-wise. The atmosphere is casual and friendly, and gets very buzzy upon a Saturday evening when a DJ arrives to spin some tunes. Placed right next to The Olympic Park, this is a fun little place in an unbeatable location.
Nestled along Brick Lane, Laboratorio Pizza specialises in authentic Neapolitan sourdough slices. Along with a few pasta dishes, the pizzeria cooks up doughy bites in their wood-fired ovens, with a whole host of classic and unusual toppings to choose from.
Looking for a great restaurant in east London? Make your way to Hoxton where Cocotte is serving up a wide range of salads and juicy rotisserie-style chicken alongside brunch specials like croissant waffles and eggs benedict with bottomless cocktails to wash it all down.
Aviary is located on the top of the new Montcalm hotel in Finsbury Square and as such has some incredible views of the city. Sit back and relax on their modern, spacious and stylish rooftop terrace or head to the restaurant which serves delicious British seasonal food; try the burger and thank us later.
Located a stone's throw from Old Street roundabout and Moorgate station, Lantana Shoreditch is a brilliant East London restaurant for boozy brunching, client lunches and chilled out after-work dinners. Explore their menu of Aussie meets world fusion plates and get stuck in.
Fancy dabbling in a little 1950s Americana at one of the most fun restaurants in east London? You'll need All Star Lanes - the restaurant, cocktail bar and bowling alley in the heart of Stratford's Westfield. Come hungry - there's a selection of melted grilled cheese, Dedham Vale burgers and mac 'n' cheese on the menu - trounce your mates at bowling on one of their 14 lanes and celebrate your victory with a couple of hard shakes in the bar afterwards. Always great fun and the perfect way to take the weight off after traipsing around the shopping centre!
At the bottom of the iconic Gherkin building, The Sterling is a sophisticated bar and restaurant where you can expect only the freshest, highest quality ingredients paired with seasonal cocktails and fantastic wines. With a focus on simple, quality food with big flavour. Start with some light nibbles, and move onto the more robust main meals with some classically British choices appearing on the menu like fish and chips, and sausage and mash with red wine and caramelised onion gravy. Book a spot at this venue and start enjoying the food on offer.
Situated on the buzzing Paradise Row in Bethnal Green, Arepa & Co is a vibrant Venezuelan eatery serving up traditional dishes in a cool setting. With a menu of pancakes, rice bowls and arepas to explore, swing by and indulge your pallete in a plethora of new treats.
For a slice of East London luxury, experience a Middle Eastern paradise of plush cushions, casual lounging and delectable Lebanese cuisine. Translating as the Arabic word for treasure, Kenza is quite literally a haven for trinkets, unique dining and touches that come straight from Morocco, you wouldn't know you're on Liverpool Street.
This place is a city favourite for some stylish after hours drinking and dining where you'll find affordable prices and a fun atmosphere every day of the week. The Gable is kind of 2 venues in one with a classic and sophisticated East London restaurant on the ground floor and then a basement bar underneath it all.
If you're looking for the perfect spot for after-work drinks or a gorgeous meal with a side of tunes, head to this City spot where you'll find just that. The menu leans towards quality British cooking, with grass-fed beef and fresh seafood as a staple, while live acts provide a soundtrack filled with jazz and soul.
Tank and Paddle is a City spot that is great for delicious pizza and a huge range of beers and ales. A few minutes away from Monument, the restaurant has a huge selection of stone-baked pizza including New-York inspired The Yankee, topped with pepperoni. Beer includes pints from local brewery Meantime and there's also a cracking cocktail menu. With a sister venue based in Bishopsgate, there's no excuse to miss out on the great home brewed drinks on offer.
When it comes to chicken in London, and East London at that, there's no better name than that of Absurd Bird. Heralded for their poultry bites, not only is the fried chicken on point here, their roster of cocktails is as impressive as their modern and fun interiors are.
Promising “an idyllic urban landscape, whatever the weather”, The Barge House is a beauty of a cafe, restaurant and bar on the edge of Regent's Canal. Head here and unwind in style, with those super-relaxed views of the water matched by a menu of soul-satisfying, seasonally changing food. You'll like it so much you'll be back for brunch come the weekends, where their signature Breakfast in Bread is served from 10am.
If you're looking for a rooftop restaurant in east London, head to Canary Wharf where Mthr is serving up unrivalled views with a side of cocktails, breakfast and all-day dining. Head 20 floors high for all this and more.
Bounce will take the headlines as one of the best ping pong bars in London, but there's also a cracking restaurant to this social hub below Old Street. The restaurant features an innovative bar food menu, premium canapes and some exciting a la carte options, with a stunning open-pizza counter restaurant that serves traditional Italian pizza and antipasti dishes.
One of our favourite restaurants in Shoreditch, the Jones Family Project serves an assortment of grilled meats and seafood comprising of the best in local produce. The same is true for the drinks list, with beers and gin sourced within a few miles of the restaurant. Enjoy some josper-grilled steak goodness washed down with creative signature cocktails.
If you like your dinner with a side of belly dancing, then you're in luck because this South Woodford spot is serving you exactly that. The menu is Lebanese with a sprinkling of French and Mediterranean twists, while the terrace is ideal for relaxing with shisha.
This cool and quirky pizza joint is located in a refurbished Victorian school, serving up sought-after slices of deliciousness. With their sourdough bases made from wild yeast and stone ground flour, they have a certain earthiness that's just darn good.
Head over to Limehouse where this gorgeous pub and restaurant offers one of the finest dining experiences in East London. Tuck into a plate of luxury pub grub washed down with some excellent wines or craft cocktails, and enjoy stunning views across the Thames.
Bringing fancy Filipino food to Hoxton comes the new Rapsa, a sexy little spot on the high street. With a moody interior and a head chef with Ottolenghi credentials, this restaurant will quickly become a favourite, especially when you see the range of seafood dishes on offer.
Catering for your every need and with a distinct devil-may-care approach to things, the Breakfast Club in Canary Wharf is always abuzz with energy and life. Decorated as a retro working man's club, the bar is framed by quaint antiques, colourful furnishings and a huge disco ball that hovers delicately over the entire venue. Full of character and life, and with a diverse menu of traditional British dishes and flavoursome comfort foods, this is a great place to escape the bustle of the city.
The closest you'll get to an American road trip this side of Route 66, Fugitive Motel brings a touch of the West Coast to the East End. Head down for the chance to stuff your faces with delicious sourdough slices, sample some seriously good craft beer and take on your friends in a few rounds of cornhole or shuffleboard.
Where do you get the best Italian food in East London? The definitive answer is up for debate, but you can't go far wrong with Gotta Trattoria. Sitting on the banks of the River Lee, they offer up a daily changing menu of delicious European and Italian treats served with a British twist. They're also known for their negronis – which they bottle for your convenience.
Bringing melt-in-the-mouth Texan BBQ, punchy bourbons and live blues tunes to the heart of Shoreditch, this is the place to kick back and embrace the meat sweats. Tuck into piles of pulled pork and teetering burgers, leave room for some of those signature buffalo wings then head to the dance floor, where live bands and DJs round things off with vintage funk and soul tracks into the night.
The Piano Works can be found in a Victorian listed warehouse at the heart of Farringdon. This place is part restaurant, part bar and part party, all with a great side of live music. Head this way if you're looking for something different from your night out; there's two pianists and accompanying musicians playing an exclusive playlist of songs requested by you, the audience. It makes for a jamming atmosphere that'll have you coming back time and again.
Andina is Shoreditch's hottest opening and is serving up a delicious taste of South America in a low-key and fun setting. From the same team as renowned Ceviche, this new bar and restaurant has a delicious menu of grill and street food classics, as well as a games room which can be hired for cooking classes or private parties.
Based in the ever-bustling Old Street, Ceviche is a fun South American restaurant that showcases the best flavours that Peru has to offer. From mouthwatering cuts of grilled meat to fresh ceviches dishes, the team of chefs use a range of fresh ingredients to recreate traditional recipes that all pack a punch. To complete the experience, guests can even enjoy hand-crafted cocktails made using a selection of fresh fruit and fiery spirits.
Smollensky's is something of an all-in-one where you can tuck into lovely nosh in their restaurant and then head downstairs to their dedicated bar area for some drinks. Located right next to Canary Wharf station, this East London restaurant is a favourite for alfresco drinking and dining where their menu of Modern American cuisine will do you right.