The Lighterman

British, Modern European·
Bronze Award

SquareMeal Review of The Lighterman

Bronze Award

An impressive, three-storey modernist addition to Granary Square, this new pub-cum-dining room is furnished in an inviting, understated style with abundant natural wood and stylish leather. It is owned by a sister company to upmarket pub group Cubitt House – as evidenced by a menu incorporating many gastropub favourites. Even on a Monday, the street-level bar was abuzz with chatter, though the first-floor restaurant is a more formal proposition with wraparound terrace, floor-to-ceiling windows and friendly staff. Fish & chips and lamb shank are main-course fixtures, but the wood-fired grill is clearly the intended star, producing various seared cuts of meat, seafood dishes and burgers. Starters are generous; our cured trout with cucumber, spring onion and spiced mayo was wonderfully fresh-tasting, if heavily spiced. Unfortunately, a main course of Aberdeen Angus beef fillet arrived distinctly less rare than requested, paired with an over-seasoned peppercorn sauce. Roasted cod with celeriac purée, fennel and pumpkin seeds fared better, being flavoursome and light. The large drinks list has an eye on current trends, encompassing orange wine, craft ales and seasonal cocktails. But in a space already hosting the dependable likes of Caravan, we reckon there are better gastronomic options than the albeit attractive Lighterman.

Good to know

Average Price
££££ - £30 - £49
British, Modern European
Eat at Home
Cool, Fun, Lively, Unique
Food Occasions
Brunch, Dinner, Lunch, Sunday roast
Alfresco And Views
Great views, Outside seating, Rooftop, Terrace, Waterside
Special Features
Dog friendly, Vegan options, Vegetarian options, Wheelchair access
Birthdays, Celebrations, Child friendly, Dates, Group dining [8+]


What’s on The Lighterman menu?

There are a few different menus to choose from at The Lighterman depending on the time or day you dine. For the most part you’ll be choosing from the main menu, but there is also a special Sunday menu, a Saturday brunch menu and a kids menu too. The modern British dishes have a light European touch woven through them, and you’ll have the choice of plates like Norfolk lamb and wild garlic pie or pan-seared salmon with crushed potatoes and a seaweed butter.

Helpful? 1

Does The Lighterman have a terrace?

Yes, The Lighterman is famous for its terraces, which stretch across the restaurant’s three levels at King’s Cross. All of the Lighterman’s terraces have parasols and heaters to cater for all weather conditions.

Helpful? 1

How to book a table at The Lighterman

You can book a table at The Lighterman directly using the widget above, which allows you to check availability for your chosen time and date.

Helpful? 1

The Lighterman is featured in

Location for The Lighterman

3 Granary Square, King's Cross, London, N1C 4BH

020 3846 3400


Opening Times

All day
Mon 12:00-23:30
Tue 12:00-23:30
Wed 12:00-23:30
Thu 12:00-23:30
Fri 12:00-00:00
Sat 10:00-00:00
Sun 10:00-22:30

Reviews of The Lighterman

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6 Reviews 


14 May 2022  
Food & Drink 1
Service 1.5
Atmosphere 1
Value 1.5
Obnoxious scary host

Most obnoxious host ever.
Attended today at 5.40 pm for dinner and drinks.
Host, Caucasian male, wearing a navy/black with thin white stripe polo shirt with shaved black hair, was so obnoxious. When I asked for a table on terrace he became rude and aggressive , arguing and "staring me out" I was so shocked and scared. I have never been treated so badly. Reported to manager and she was lovely and our drinks bill was waived. We chose not to eat there after such an awful experience and went elsewhere where the host was lovely and we had an amazing time.

Awful, awful man. Lighterman management- Please please ensure this awful man is not allowed to treat other customers this way.

Joanna H

08 May 2022   - Verified Diner
Food & Drink 5
Service 5
Atmosphere 5
Value 5

Amazing - a real find !


07 July 2021   - Verified Diner
Food & Drink 3
Service 4
Atmosphere 4
Value 3



07 July 2019  
Food & Drink 3
Service 3
Atmosphere 4
Value 3

I had one of the priciest meals, sirloin steak and half a garlic bulb , extra for chips! Steak way to dry , chips already salted and garlic cold. Not going back.

Chiara P

20 March 2018  
Food & Drink 3
Service 3
Atmosphere 3
Value 3
The good, the bad and the ugly
The good: We went for a sunday roast and the portions are sizeable, with nice touches such as 1) Lovely crispy crackling without so much salt that you're gasping for a drink 2) Tender, not overly fatty pork belly as sometimes it can be more fat than meat 3) The apple sauce was different which can often be a euphemism for "not good" but here really was! It tasted as though they has mixed it with horseradish or something which gave it enough of a kick to cut through the sweetness 4) Possibly the best sticky toffee pudding I have had in a long time, light not stodgy, none of the burnt taste that you can get when the toffee goes over The bad: 1) Overly salty gravy. Tasted like straight up Bisto. A good reminder to taste something before you drown your plate in it! 2) Roast potatoes that tasted as if they had been deep fried not roasted and (whisper it) a bit stale The ugly: I had a sizeable piece of pork left on my plate. I did ask the waitress to pack it but she must have not heard as when I reminded her later she had thrown it away. Lots of environmental resources have gone into cooking/rearing food, to throw it away wastes all of that. Please ask your staff to offer to pack things if there is lots left. It was mothers day and complimentary petit fours/ a drink for the mums wouldn't have gone amiss. Most other restaurants do this automatically when you book for a special occasion.

Nicole P

10 October 2017  
Food & Drink 4.5
Service 3.5
Atmosphere 4
Value 4.5
Favourite spot in Kings Cross
The Lighterman is my go-to lunch spot in Kings Cross. I absolutely love it here; it is a fantastic location for a quick stroll along the canal from our offices and for any business meetings, it is only a stones throw from Kings Cross. Summertime here is wonderful as the L-shaped, upstairs terrace affords great views of the canal or the fountains in Granary Square and is able to accommodate shade-seekers or sun-worshipers alike. Downstairs, especially on a Friday night, is buzzing and when they finally opened up the lower canalside this year, it was the perfect spot for an after work drink with friends, colleagues or even on a date! The food here is really good too - they do change the menus seasonally however, they keep firm favourites there, such as crispy squid for starters and the amazing steaks! I have actually tried all the squid and all the steaks on offer in Kings Cross and The Lighterman is by far the best. I like to go here at least twice a week if I can - in fact, I'm there again tomorrow! If I were to have one minor issue, I think that the service could be more attentive. Lovely and polite waiters/waitresses however, I do often have to call them over rather than them noticing I need their attention. I work as an Executive Assistant and I have taken various EAs from other companies there for lunch and now they are using it too as a great venue and amazing location. I look forward to many more lunches and dinners here!
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