The capital has no shortage of fine restaurants, but lush green spaces can be more of a rarity. A great way to be at one with nature is by dining in a restaurant with a garden. Though limited, London has a handful of eateries boasting an oasis, ranging from manicured lawns to rose adorned walls. Here’s our pick of the best restaurants with gardens in the capital.
Why we like it: Proudly independent, this all-day eatery is a dependable alternative to Spitalfield’s pervasive chains and is home to its gorgeous covered garden dressed with hanging plants, vines and pretty potted plants. While soaking up the atmosphere, guests can enjoy the likes of cray fish and confit chicken ballotine and chorizo bites for starters, before diving into mains such as spiced Scottish salmon, spring lamb cutlets, or Gresham duck breast.
Where: 65a Brushfield Street, E1 6AA
Bourne & Hollingsworth Buildings, Clerkenwell
Why we like it: In its imposing corner building behind Exmouth Market, this expansive all-day bar and brasserie has its own garden room to satisfy any guests in need of a splash of nature, as the room is adorned with hanging plants, vines and floral upholstered chairs. While enjoying the scenery, diners can nibble on the likes of honey glazed quail, carrot and coriander soup, or chargrilled miso aubergine before tucking into a dessert of Earl grey crème brûlée.
Where: 42 Northampton Rod, EC1R 0HU
Brinkley’s, West Brompton
Why we like it: A local hang out, Brinkley’s tried-and-tested-formula of matching crowd-pleasing food with cut-price fine wines attracts a well-groomed Chelsea set, who throw generous helpings of buzz and glamour into the mix. The real crowd pleaser, however, is its garden, housed in what used to be its Wine Gallery. Sat amongst posh locals and ivy clad walls, tuck into nibbles such as deep-fried brie, a spicy halloumi and courgette burger, or crispy confit duck.
Where: 49 Hollywood Road, Little Chelsea, SW10 9HX
Chiltern Firehouse, Marylebone
Why we like it: Chiltern Firehouse is decorated with a selection of gorgeous flowers, plants and vines that drape across windows from their above potted roots. Its courtyard, however, is the real attraction, as it’s an ideal suntrap on a summer’s day and comes complete with cosy blankets for cooler evenings. While there, dine on a selection of savoury dishes, from chargrilled cauliflower to grilled Galician octopus.
Where: 1 Chiltern Street, W1U 7PA
Coq d’Argent, City
Why we like it: Home to gorgeous roof gardens complete with pristinely manicured lawns and sharply cut topiary, Coq d’Argent has earned its status as an all-time favourite in business diaries. In the terrace gardens, you can order directly from the restaurant’s grill menu, which boasts French classics including six escargots in garlic butter, and filling mains such as a prawn and lobster sandwich, and olive and rosemary braised beef cheeks with ratatouille.
Where: 1 Poultry, EC2R 8EJ
Dalloway Terrace, Bloomsbury
Why we like it: The Bloomsbury Hotel made a canny move in converting its terrace into a restaurant, but the result is beautiful as the building’s side is dressed with twinkling fairy lights and foliage, albeit plastic, for an added charm. Early birds can enjoy a breakfast menu of pancakes, omelettes and classic fry-ups, while latecomers can tuck into the all-day menu which boasts bites from Maldon rock oysters to green pea falafel, or an order of risotto with truffle, white asparagus and green peas.
Where: The Bloomsbury Hotel, 16-22 Great Russell Street, WC1B 3NN
El Parador, Regent’s Park
Why we like it: You’ll rarely hear a bad word spoken about El Parador, where classic flavours, effervescent vibes and rustic good looks combine to make one seriously seductive Spanish venue. While drinking in the sunshine on the restaurant’s beautiful courtyard garden, indulge in the tasty menu which features a wide selection of savoury tapas options with a twist, including boquerones (anchovies with garlic oil and parsley) and patatas harra pan-fried with harissa, rosemary, caramelised leeks and roasted cherry tomatoes.
Where: 245 Eversholt Street, NW1 1BA
Why we like it: An Islington classic, this eatery is impressive both inside and out. The airy interior is dapper, while the open and spacious garden is perfect for watching the sun set. While sitting alfresco, dine on the likes of gazpacho to start, before diving into lamb loin served with gnocchi, red pepper salsa and French beans, or beetroot gnocchi with goat’s cheese and baby leeks. Finish off with a pudding of banana cheesecake with dulce de leche ice cream or tiramisu.
Where: 106 Islington High Street, Camden Passage, N1 8EG
The Ivy Chelsea Garden, Chelsea
Why we like it: Richard Caring’s eye for opulence is obvious in this Ivy branch, which is housed in a vast Edwardian building. For alfresco diners, this outpost’s manicured garden covered in shrubbery, sporadic pops of colour in the form of flowers, and, you guessed it, ivy, are ideal for a leisurely summer’s evening. Fans of The Ivy’s menu can rest easy, however, as the kitchen at this location delivers dishes that stay true to the eatery’s trademark eclectic menu, ranging from fish & chips and steak tartare, to baked quinoa and chickpeas.
Where: 197 King’s Road, SW3 5ED
The Petersham, Covent Garden
Why we like it: This is the first sibling to the Petersham Nurseries in Richmond, and this King’s Court location keeps in line with the floral themed original with lots of flowers, hanging crystal chandeliers and indoor trees which reach the ceiling. With foliage as your dining company, enjoy dishes such as native lobster salad with quinoa, shaved cucumber, fennel and crème fraiche, or a lighter dish of steamed courgettes with Amalfi lemon.
Where: 27-31 King Street, WC2E 8JB
If you want to discover more of what the capital has to offer, check out our full list of London’s best outdoor restaurants here.