Where to eat the best seafood in London
From oysters to lobster spaghetti, decadent seafood platters to fish croquettes, these are London's best seafood restaurants
Gorgeous and glamorous with its vintage painted tiles, this oyster bar on the ground floor of South Kensington's iconic Michelin building is an enclave of civility and exemplary seafood.
Dining choices here are more informal than Claude Bosi's two Michelin starred haute gastronomy upstairs, but they usually involve a decadent platter of shellfish. Their langoustine are particularly notable and there's a fine retro prawn cocktail with properly plump, juicy prawns and Marie Rose sauce.
Hot dishes include an authentic fish soup with all the correct rouille and gruyere accoutrements, and a generous fish pie of impeccable quality and taste.
Breakfast, a recent addition, includes a full Bibendum or eggs Royale with smoked salmon and toasted sourdough.
Dinner for two including drinks £80Read more ...
A fishmonger with a restaurant attached, what could be a better catch? This prize hook up can be found next door to Moxon’s much-loved, ethical fishmongers in East Dulwich.
Robin Moxon's cosy fish restaurant serves up a greedy choice of piscean small plates.There's the option of splurging on a whole fish, perhaps John Dory or skate served straight in its prime.
The beautifully presented small plates offer a lot of choice: from pickled herrings, delicately aromatic with piquant roe and celeriac remoulade, mustard and dill sauce; to a mussel, red mullet, white bean, tomato and saffron broth of mesmerising depth.
Don’t leave without ordering the properly tangy lemon tart with the finest pastry and elegant caramelised 'skin'.
Book well ahead for weekends.
Dinner for two with drinks £80Read more ...
The spiced shrimp crumpet at Cornerstone, much feted on instagram, is well worth the schlep to Hackney Wick.
Cornerstone is the most exciting new seafood opening in the past year. Chef Tom Brown's love of the coast and all things crustacean shines through in his cooking, which has beautiful clarity and a balance of flavours. Brown's credentials are impeccable: he trained with Nathan Outlaw in Devon and ran Outlaw at The Capital, which is moving with a whole new restaurant to The Goring Hotel in Victoria this summer.
Oysters are served with pickled cucumber and horseradish, a clever original combination that enhances the briny sweetness. Such purity is manifest too in the tartare dishes and creative mains, such as tempura monkfish that’s been marinated in the juice from prawn heads, served with Marie Rose sauce made from smoked tomato ketchup and reduced shellfish stock.
Beautiful pink desserts include seasonal rhubarb pavlova with clotted cream and ginger.
Dinner for two with drinks £120Read more ...
Oysters were the making of Wright Brothers, who started out supplying them to restaurants. Brother-in-laws Ben and Robin believed there were so many interesting and incredible quality oysters that weren't reaching diners.
Fast-forward and they continue to supply oysters and seafood to restaurants around London, while running their own superlative seafood restaurants. The newest is at Battersea Power Station's riverside promenade, which has impressive views from inside whilst the huge terrace has plenty of space for larger parties.
Oysters, unsurprisingly take a starring role. Be sure to try the Ostra Regal from Bannow Bay, Ireland oysters which are an extraordinary mix of briny, nutty and sweet – probably the best oysters available anywhere. Staff often offer an impromptu oyster masterclass with advice on how to taste and eat and a round the coast guide.
Besides impeccably sourced fruits de mer platters of mostly British seafood, there's an enticing choice of small plates. The standout dish is the Josper cooked octopus with a melting texture and subtle smokiness. Or share a whole fish: sea bream and hake are readily available presently, and are best prepared simply to let the produce shine.
There's also good advice on the best wines to drink with oysters and other seafood.
Dinner for two with drinks: £80.00Read more ...
Jackson Boxer and Andrew Clarke of Brunswick House and St Leonards restaurants are on a culinary roll. Their newest restaurant focusses on seafood (and other ingredients too) from the Outer Hebridean Western Isles of Scotland, where Jackson has spent all his holidays since childhood.
The platters of oysters, langoustines, and more from the Outer Hebrides are served raw or sometimes cooked momentarily over woodfire. There are also massive scallops with celeriac and shitake, a daring tuna and beef tartare, and cod wrapped in oyster leaf. And Instagram has been going crazy for the shallot, comte and truffle vol au vent.
The interior is all vintage oak and washed, distressed paint finishes, giving it a boho lived-in look. There's an outstanding wine list with plenty on tap besides gems from the Boxer's own cellars.
Dinner for two including drinks: £150Read more ...
Seafood restaurants come in all shapes and sizes: from the super swanky Sexy Fish to the endearingly boho, no-frills Roe. Upstairs, within converted sea container Pop Brixton, where 32 seafood loving diners can squeeze in along shared benches and counter seats for some of the most thoughtful and sustainable seafood in town.
Playing to his Irish roots, chef Simon Whiteside makes the soda bread of dreams with Guinness and served with a with a choice of seaweed butter, oyster and sorrel emulsions. There is a beautiful citrus inflected ceviche and cuttlefish arancini with pecorino foam, that sounds an odd combination yet works incredibly well with a strong hit of both iodine and umami.
Dinner for two including wine: £80Read more ...
In the heart of Covent Garden, Parsons has some brilliantly original yet simple seafood dishes that are impossible to tire of.
Think potted shrimp croquettes, judiciously spiced, and trout tartare with a delicate Bloody Mary. Regulars praise the chowder; redolent with prawns, haddock, potato and parsley. There are whole fish too, though many prefer the side dishes, especially lobster mash.
Dinner for two with drinks: £80Read more ...
A veritable temple to seafood with a distinctive scallop shell adorned altar/bar and a beautifully high ceilinged, dusky pink dining room: Neptune really lives up to its name. It is being hailed London's hippest seafood restaurant thanks to chef Brett Redman.
Order the exquisitely dressed crab to try the plump and utterly moreish baby muffins and dulse butter that accompany them.
Fish main dishes, such as a splendid whole lemon sole with almond and sorrel pesto, can be cooked over wood-fire, adding a fantastic subtle smokiness.
Weekend brunch is served at Neptune too, for an especially luxurious start to the day. Start with an oyster and Bloody Mary shooter and add a crab omelette or Neptune's take on congee with char siu bacon, soy marinated egg, spring onions & nduja XO.
Dinner for two including drinks: £140Read more ...
Seafood in a burger? Why not relish the challenge, especially when it is a veritable stack including soft shell crab, fishcake, chips, anchovy cream and fried egg.
It is a gloriously messy and immensely satisfying way to eat and makes for an excellent Saturday brunch, preceded by a few oysters chosen at the bar with an appealing choice of Asian inspired dressing.
On Fridays, there's fish and chips with a beer/cider for £10 plus there are enticing offers on oysters and champagne.
Saturday brunch is £25 for three courses.Read more ...
On the cusp of Carnaby Street, former street food trader Claw brings affordable seafood to Soho in the now familiar guise of small plates.
Our favourites include squid with twice fried aubergine, mojo and szechuan pepper; jerk giant shrimp with pineapple chow; and irresistible crab mac n'cheese with Ogleshield gratin. For a speedy lunch, there's a crab brioche roll, fries and salad for £10.
Dinner for two including wine: £80Read more ...
Both fishmonger and restaurant, with a sister restaurant in Padstow, Prawn on the Lawn unsurprisingly source from day boats in Devon and Cornwall, ensuring the freshest of fish dishes. The signature dish – an open sandwich ultra prawn cocktail – is the taste of summer.
The restaurant, which looks like a rather smart seaside shack, might incude Porthilly mussels, clams and manzanilla sherry, skate with olives or a whole Padstow caught lobster with lime and coriander butter.
Thursday to Saturday, their next door cafe is open late serving seafood tapas, often with an Asian twist.
Dinner for two including drinks: £80
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Making J Sheekey Atlantic Bar even more glamorous a seafood destination than ever, fashion designer Erdem has designed an extravagant new silver-plated Plateau du mer stand for the restaurant. This arrives laden with a resplendent selection of lobster, crab, langoustine, clams, mussels, oysters and more (costing £59) with the suggestion of a glass of Veuve Cliquot Yellow Label champagne to accompany such riches.
Inspired by Japanese illustrations of koi fish and delicate flowers that mirror Erdem's fashion design details, sharing this Plateau de Mer must surely be the ultimate romantic seafood gesture.
In the heart of theatre-land, veteran J Sheekey dates back to 1896, and has always been a favoured (ever so slightly louche) hideaway for thespians and celebrities whose portraits decorate the four adjoining rooms.
Besides an impressive choice of crustaceans – crab is served as a whole cock crab, dressed, or as risotto, whilst razor clams are a fixture, with chorizo – there's a splendid roast seafood and sea vegetables platter, as well as the legendary Sheekey's fish pie.
Dinner for two including drinks: £150
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Victorian Bentley's tucked away close to Piccadilly Circus has had a new lease of life since oyster and seafood-loving Richard Corrigan took it over. Little has changed inside, there's still striking wood panelling, red leather, studded banquettes and a huge marble counter where you can watch some of the fastest oyster shuckers in town.
Besides raw native oysters, there are prepared oysters served classically Rockerfeller style or given more modish Asian treatments. Try too Bentley's iconic fish and chips, or the comforting and luxurious fish pie.
The large terrace is well heated and perfect for chewing oysters and imagining being actually by the sea.
Dinner for two including drinks: £100Read more ...
Refreshingly down-to-earth, Bucket evokes the seaside, serving prawns, whitebait and calamari in titular buckets. Mussels are served with four sauces: coconut chilli, lobster brandy, pancetta and tomato, or classic white wine. There are lobster toasties, crayfish burgers and seafood spaghetti options too. And to drink: seaweed martinis. This is a seafood restaurant that doesn't stand on ceremony.
The interior is seaside shack chic with a weatherworn yet rustic beach club vibe.
For small parties, book the ice bar table and have oysters shucked to order served with house signature Bloody Mary dressing, cucumber and dill, or lemon and caper. As an added incentive, there's Oyster Happy Hour (Mon-Fri 4pm-7pm and Sat 4pm-6pm) where sustainable oysters are only £1 each.
Dinner for two including drinks: from £60.00Read more ...
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