British, Steak·
Silver Award

SquareMeal Review of Rotunda

Silver Award

Long before Coal Drops Yard upped King’s Cross’s cool factor, Rotunda was drawing in the crowds with its farm-to-table ethos and charming canal-side terrace. The restaurant underwent refurbishment in the summer of 2018 and while most of the cosmetic changes are subtle (splashes of orange in the colour scheme, a new hanging cabinet on display near the entrance), the biggest difference is the introduction of a buzzy chef’s counter. With much of the kitchen moved from downstairs into the restaurant, diners can now watch the chefs at work, while asking for their cooking tips of course.

Rotunda makes full use of its owner’s farm in Northumberland, while all beef and lamb on the menu is dry-aged, hung and butchered on site. Seasonally changing specials are also a fixture: on our visit, we devoured a tremendously decadent baked camembert, drizzled with honey and truffle oil and served with St John bread.

The kitchen’s commitment to process is evidenced in triumphs such as the 8oz beef burger. So often an uninspiring choice on restaurant menus, this perfectly cooked burger is gratifyingly greasy without overdoing it and is complemented by toppings of smoked bacon and Ogleshield cheese. If you’d rather eat fish, try the likes of fleshy, citrusy grilled Cornish scallops slathered in seaweed butter and topped with crispy samphire.

Things get a little odd come dessert, with some rather random combinations on offer (blueberry Eccles cake with espresso coffee choc pot anyone?). Nonetheless, our more conventional chocolate and almond lava cake with cherry compote was a warm, comforting end to a delicious meal.

Friendly staff and a fairly-priced wine list are further reasons to take a trip to King’s Place – it might have more competition now, but Rotunda’s still got it.


Good to know

Average Price
££££ - £30 - £49
British, Steak
Glamorous, Lively, Traditional, Unique
Food Occasions
All day dining, Bottomless brunch, Brunch, Dinner, Lunch, Sunday roast
Alfresco And Views
Great views, Outside seating, Terrace, Waterside
Special Features
Counter dining, Dog friendly, Vegetarian options
Birthdays, Dates, Group dining [8+], Special occasions
Food Hygiene Rating


Can you book Rotunda?

Yes, booking in advance is recommended. However, walk ins are also accepted.

Helpful? 0

Does Rotunda have a dress code?

There's no official dress code, but we would recommend a smart, casual look.

Helpful? 0

Does Rotunda serve brunch?

Yes, brunch is served, on both Saturday and Sunday, 11am-3pm.

Helpful? 0

This venue also offers

Private Group Dining


Location for Rotunda

Kings Place, 90 York Way, King's Cross, London, N1 9AG

020 7014 2840


Opening Times

Mon-Sat 12N-3pm 5-10.30pm Sun 12N-6.30pm

Reviews of Rotunda

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6 Reviews 

Miranda F

26 July 2019  
Wonderful setting with outside terrace and next to the canal. They have their own farm so the meat is first class, lovely atmosphere and excellent service.

Dorian A

01 August 2015  
Food & Drink 1.5
Service 3
Atmosphere 2.5
Value 2.5
Oh dear!
Has the management or the chef changed recently? Originally we thought Rotunda was very good, but our last visit was a big disappointment. Delicious ingredients ruined by bad cooking. Is it so difficult to bake a beautiful lemon sole without drying it out and leaving is crisp and chewy? In two minds whether we'll make the trek to Rotunda again. Very sad!

Tomi I

22 January 2014  
Food & Drink 3
Service 3
Atmosphere 3
Value 2.5
Overall it as okay. Orders got a little mixed up, but maybe that's because we had a late lunch (2:45pm ish) on a Saturday, so perhaps the rota was changing…

Harry P

20 March 2012  
Food & Drink 4.5
Service 4.5
Atmosphere 3.5
Value 3.5
Popped in a few times now for their Sunday Roast and i've yet to be let down. Yet to try anything else on the menu but if you're in the mood for a relaxed Sunday lunch next to a hidden gem of a canal then you'll enjoy this place. Waiters are friendly and knowledgeable, the live music sets a nice atmosphere and if the sun's out the waterside setting is lovely. Will venture their soon to see how they handle a busy Friday night but so far, so very good.

Gareth H

07 April 2009  
Food & Drink 4
Service 4.5
Atmosphere 3
Value 3
Rotunda is a smart addition to the limited Kings Cross restaurant scene. Its smart design and outlook over the canal, coupled with the sleek bulk of the Kings Place arts centre make it an attractive destination. Service while we were there was excellent, very attentive and generous. Food had a British slant and seemed hearty on the menu but quite small when it arrived. My lamb was very good and a chocolate brownie with vanilla ice cream to finish delicious. Food was well priced but wine seemed expensive. Being offered it two wine glass sizes, plus 500ml carafes was a nice touch. My one real gripe is the lighting. They have made a classic mistake of trying to light a restaurant entirely from the ceiling. This never works and only low, soft localised lighting makes a place feel cosy. The cold lighting from the ceiling coupled with the blue upholstery gives a rather austere feeling at night. I recommend a few candles to sort that out. Overall a nice place and worth checking out – Can be casual or used to impress.

Guilherme B

02 March 2009  
Food & Drink 3.5
Service 4
Atmosphere 3.5
Value 3
Anyone who knows York Way will know that this is not the sort of neighbourhood that shouts “great eating”. However, the Rotunda is in a new building with interesting spaces and concert venues which could do something to change my perceptions. The restaurant itself is built facing the Canal which I believe is the same one which goes along the North side of Regent's Park, to Camden Lock and onwards. Given the urban setting, the view is attractive, as is the decor and design of the whole place. My wife and I wanted to see the sculpture casting business in the same building and wandered in looking for a light meal on a Sunday lunchtime in late February 2009. The lady who greeted us seemed genuinely warm and interested and, actually smiled ! I asked if I could go off menu and after enquiry in the kitchen I was able to obtain a platter of cheese, cold cuts and salad leaves with fresh and interesting bread. We had one of the house white wines which was absolutely fine – crisp and light, which went well with the food. Everything was efficient, yet unhurried. We aim to go back one evening for a “proper” meal to be enjoyed as the evenings get longer as Spring sets in.
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