The National Café

National Gallery, Trafalgar Square , London, WC2N 5DN


020 7747 5942

The National Cafe interior
Peyton and Byrne at The National Cafe
Grapefruit salad
Cocktails at The National Cafe
Bavette steak
The bar at The National Cafe
The restaurant at The National Cafe
Steak Tartare
Lunch on Trafalgar Square
Orange cocktails
Spaghetti Vongole
Afternoon Tea London
Doughnuts at The National Cafe

SquareMeal Review of The National Café

bronze award


After a reboot in spring 2017, Peyton & Byrne's café at The National Gallery is an appropriately pretty space, using a pastel colour palette Monet would approve of. The high-ceilinged dining room and cocktail bar has no windows at eye-level, which muffles the tourist throng outside but also mutes the restaurant’s iconic surroundings, which will please those seeking soothing minimalism. The seasonal, European menu starts the day with the likes of freshly made crumpets with black pudding and Marmite. Lunch and dinner follow with an assured selection, the stand-outs during our visit including simply presented squid drizzled with olive oil, and deeply buttery and pungent Devonshire crab ravioli. There’s a quintessential afternoon tea offering too, while you’ll find plenty of interest by the glass on the short wine list. Prices are modest, but with so much similarly-priced competition in the West End, we’d recommend this for a classy breakfast or lunch stop only.

The National Café Location

National Gallery, Trafalgar Square , London WC2N 5DN


020 7747 5942

Opening times

Mon-Fri 8am-10pm (Mon -7pm Fri -10.30pm) Sat-Sun 9am-6pm (Sat -7pm)

Private Dining

The Trafalgar Room at The National Cafe Private Dining
Steak Tartare
Cocktails at The National Cafe

The Trafalgar Room at The National Café is a calming space decked out in sea blues and light greys. An ocean blue tiled floor adds a touch of pizazz, as does the accomplished European menu, which features dishes such as fish pie with spring leeks, and desserts including salted caramel and cinnamon doughnuts with warm toffee sauce.

The Trafalgar Room Capacity: 30

The National Café's Reviews


Food & Drink: 8.0


Service: 8.0


Atmosphere: 8.0


Value: 8.0


Food + drink: 4

Service: 4

Atmosphere: 4

Value: 4


Bronze Reviewer
12 August 2017

There are two sections of the National Café, one is self-service, which offers the most delicious selection of cakes that I have seen in a long time, however, where we were eating is the table service part of the café, where it is possible to making a booking. There is a set lunch with two or three courses which had enough variety for us all and an excellent vegetarian option. Particularly delicious were the salted caramel and cinnamon doughnuts with toffee sauce. Not only was the food delicious, but it was also extremely good value for money. The staff were lovely and the service excellent without disturbing us. Highly recommended, will be back.

Book a table

Party Size
You won't be charged for this service.
Collect 100 with this booking