The Barbary

North African·
Silver Award

SquareMeal Review of The Barbary

Silver Award

The Barbary Coast evokes images of an exotic land of traders and pirates – and it provides inspiration for the second London restaurant from the team behind The Palomar. Like its big brother, The Barbary offers an enticing blend of Israeli cooking with Mediterranean ingredients, but also adds North African spices and cooking techniques. You’ll find a warm welcome and lively vibe in the cosy interior, which echoes a Middle Eastern courtyard with an open kitchen at its heart. No bookings are taken and there are just 24 counter seats. Breads are freshly baked: warm Jerusalem bagel comes with a traditional paper twist of za’atar spice for dipping. The short menu is divided into land (meat), sea (fish) and earth (vegetarian) dishes – all deftly spiced and seasoned, making flavours sing. We were transported to the Middle East with rich, tender Persian goat stew, slow-cooked for eight hours with turmeric, root veg and pomegranate juice. Perfectly grilled swordfish was simply served with capers, roast garlic and vine tomatoes. Desserts are sweet and fragrant – Beirut nights (semolina pudding with rose syrup) lives up to its name with enticing flavours – and another boon is the drinks list, encompassing trendy orange wines, vermouth and arak. 

Good to know

Average Price
££££ - £30 - £49
North African
Cool, Cosy, Fun, Lively
Special Features
Counter dining
Food Hygiene Rating


16 Neal's Yard, Covent Garden, London, WC2H 9DP

Opening Times

Mon-Fri 12N-3pm 5-10pm Sat-Sun 12N-10pm (Sun -9.30pm)


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12 Reviews 

Nick B

06 August 2019  
Great food, great atmosphere - always a treat.

Katie Y

29 July 2019  
The quality of the food and ingredients at the Barbary are outstanding. I recently tried the charred octopus and jaffa cauliflower, and finished it off with their legendary 'hashcake' which blew me away.

Brian R

28 July 2019  
Incredibly innovative and brilliant flavor profiles and combinations.

Gianfranco F

26 July 2019  
Laid back - best nan bread in london -.

Becky C

29 March 2019  
Really chilled, service is absolutely great, feels like you're at your mates house (in a good way) and the food is incredible. It's the kind of place you could eat at 3 times a week!

Brian R

03 August 2018  
Truly amazing experience, the food is outstanding and the service/ambiance are just perfect.

Nick B

10 July 2018  
Great food and great atmosphere.

Binita S

27 June 2018  
Love the counter top dining and the food is incredible. The restaurant always has a buzz and the chefs interact.

Jamina W

16 June 2017  
Absolutely amazing food - I didn't even have any meat and I was blown away. Definitely as good as The Barbary.

Carl J

18 March 2017  
Food & Drink 3.5
Service 1
Atmosphere 3.5
Value 1
Avoid if more than three people
The food and atmosphere is great (apart from one dish that was burnt), although my impression could potentially have been influenced by numbed senses from the excruciatingly long wait. I arrived at 8pm on a Friday, put my name down for a company of three and was informed it would take an hour or just over an hour - fine by me. Two hours later and we had still not been seated, odd given ALL other companies of two had been seated. When we finally got a place at the desk we were informed that basically half the menu had sold out and 30 minutes into our meal the chefs started to clean and shut down the kitchen. It would appear you cannot go to this place if you are more than two people. The Maître d’ appears to be utterly incompetent in seating people according to his wait list. To add insult to injury, I noticed said Maître d' sat down for a meal with some of the items that sold out - in the place were you are not allowed to order food - before we even had received or place at the bar.
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