SLMan’s Best New London Restaurants Of 2022

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From long boozy lunches with friends to snappier pre-theatre dinners, the festive break offers plenty of chances to try some of the capital’s newest restaurants. Whether you fancy a multi-course, Michelin-worthy extravaganza or just some excellent grab-and-go pizza, here are 13 of our favourite openings from the last 12 months.
Photography RESTAURANT ST BARTS; MIZNON/OLLIE GROVE; FLAT EARTH PIZZA; STEVEN JOYCE

Miznon, Soho

Miznon – meaning Kiosk in Hebrew – first opened in Tel Aviv in 2011 and has since expanded to Paris, Vienna, New York, Melbourne, Singapore and Boston. This summer it landed in Soho. Founded by celebrity chef Eyal Shani and renowned for its modern take on Israeli food, hit dishes include its well-loved whole roasted cauliflower, a seasoned lamb kebab filled with grilled tomato, onions, tahini and pickles; and the ‘Minute Steak Plate’, which is served with tahini, salsa and tomatoes. When it comes to drinks, Miznon serves four homemade bottled cocktails, giving customers the option to pimp them with either Gin Miznon – which has notes of sage, juniper, coriander, licorice, angelica, sumac and pistachio – or Miznon Vodka, which is infused with sage. Can’t get a table? The team has just launched a pita hatch in Notting Hill. 

Visit Miznon.co.uk

Restaurant St Barts, Smithfield

The team behind Nest in Hackney and Fulham’s Fenn has launched Restaurant St Barts, an inventive space that played host to Gary Lineker and Giles Coren the night we visited. Diners are guided through an outstanding 15-course tasting menu championing seasonal produce from across the British Isles. It all begins at the bar, with snacks like poached oyster and pea with lovage granita, and Welsh wagyu bellini with Exmoor caviar. You’re then led through to the main dining room: overlooking the cloisters of hidden gem St Bartholomew-the-Great church, you might try cured red mullet kohlrabi terrine; Cornish lobster with preserved peppers; and cod loin poached in mushroom stock topped with pickled Wiltshire truffle-infused butter sauce. A Hackney honey and lavender dessert rounded off our meal, followed by petit fours and a classic British cheeseboard with fruit loaf and pickled prunes. A must-visit.

Visit Restaurant-StBarts.co.uk

Cycene, Shoreditch

Blue Mountain School in London’s East End swapped Mãos for a fresh concept this autumn. Cycene is headed up by chef Theo Clench, who previously cooked at excellent African restaurant Akoko. Cycene spans two floors of the restored townhouse, with a diners-only bar on the ground floor offering cocktails, minimal intervention wines and kombuchas. Guests are then led upstairs and behind the pass into the 16-seat restaurant for a 10-course meal, where dishes might include Carlingford oyster with cucumber and kaluga caviar; and slow-cooked turbot with lettuce sauce, sake and oscietra caviar. Private dining is offered in an adjoining hearth room, which seats up to six guests around a bronze wishbone dining table.

Visit BlueMountain.School

Lisboeta, Fitzrovia
Miznon, Soho
OLLIE GROVE

Tatale, Waterloo

Supper club superstar Akwasi Brenya-Mensa recently opened Tatale at The Africa Centre. On Great Suffolk Street, just around the corner from The Cut's restaurants and theatres, Tatale is a beautiful space filled with sandy clay plaster walls, intricately carved timber furniture, vivid woven fabrics and artwork from pioneering African artists. Taking its name from a Ghanaian plantain dish, the restaurant serves excellent small plates such as black-eyed bean hummus with plantain chips; chichinga buttermilk fried chicken wings with dill emulsion; ackee croquettes, and Brenya-Mensa’s signature mashed rice and groundnut soup. Perfect for a relaxed dinner with mates.

Visit TataleAndCo.com

Caia, Notting Hill

Caia is a wine bar, restaurant and music venue just off Portobello Road. Founded by locals Rishabh Vir and Tim Lang – two of the team behind the brilliant Fiend, which has sadly just closed its doors – Caia offers a huge list of wines from interesting and young producers alongside a seasonally changing menu of dishes cooked on a custom-made, open-fire grill. Head chef Jessica Donovan, who used to cook at The Pem, has created a menu of moreish sharing dishes, such as garlic and sesame brioche with salted honey butter; asparagus with smoked onion and crispy chicken skin; cured seabream with tomato dashi and bottarga; and grilled artichoke with cured egg yolk. If you’re looking for a small party space, a 10-seat wine room is the ideal spot to try some of the bar’s best bottles. Meanwhile, the basement – which features a Kuzma R record player and Auditorium R-25 A speakers – will take guests from the heyday of rare jazz, funk, tropical and disco right up to current hits.

Follow @Caia.London

Flat Earth Pizzas, Bethnal Green

After two years of successful pop ups and residencies, Sarah Brading and Rich Baker finally opened a permanent restaurant on the fringes of Broadway Market this year. Focusing on provenance and seasonality, the duo have garnered a serious following for their meat-free food and an ethical ethos which has been incorporated into everything at the new place. Occupying a light-filled space in Bethnal Green, the restaurant is open all day, serving a popular selection of vegetarian and vegan dishes. As well as pizzas – we’d go for ‘The OG Hackney Hot’ topped with sweet pickled beetroot, three Somerset cheeses, organic tomato passata and chilli – the restaurant serves Climpson & Sons coffee, kimchi shakshuka, granola and fruit compote, and various delicious-sounding things on toast. When it comes to drinks, there’s draught beer from The Kernel and 40ft in Dalston, and white, red and orange wine on tap or in reusable bottles, which can be refilled to takeaway after a meal.

Visit FlatEarthPizzas.com

Caia, Notting Hill
STEVEN JOYCE

Arcade Food Hall, West End

We loved Arcade Food Theatre when it launched at the bottom of brutalist Tottenham Court Road landmark Centrepoint. Now it’s reopened with nine new concepts created by one of London’s most exciting restaurant groups, JKS. The team has brought together some of the capital’s best-loved names, creating an atmospheric space that combines open kitchens, chef’s tables and canteen-style seating. New brands include Plaza Khao Gaeng, a southern Thai restaurant; Hero Indian Fast Food, serving up North Indian street food classics; and Middle Eastern shawarma kitchen Shatta & Toum. There’s also American diner-style food at Manna; Indonesian street food from Bebek!Bebek!; day-to-night deli Arcade Provisions; a Japanese sushi and omakase experience from Sushi Kamon; and Nepali street food from Tipan Tapan. Make your last stop the ‘Benham & Froud Jelladrome’ from dessert pioneers Bompas & Parr.

Visit ArcadeFoodHall.co.uk

The Aubrey, Knightsbridge

One of the most anticipated launches this year, The Aubrey opened at Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park following a huge fire at the hotel in 2018. Joining the ever-popular Dinner by Heston, and replacing Bar Boulud, the atmospheric restaurant aims to create a fully immersive experience focused on art and design, but we mostly rate it because it’s an izakaya, with menus showcasing traditional Japanese cooking techniques and sustainable produce – think A3 wagyu beef and Hokkaido crab. In the same space, two bars offer distinctive cocktail menus – make ours a Rotasu (Ginger Toki whiskey, Laphroaig 10, umeshu, lemon, honey, pear and oolong tea).

Visit MandarinOriental.com

Lisboeta, Fitzrovia

Nuno Mendes returned to London back in the spring, bringing with him some discoveries and secrets from Lisbon’s food and wine scene. The menu begins with a selection of snacks, such as morcela sausage, scarlet prawn toast and spiced prawn rissois, a traditional Portuguese turnover that Nuno fondly remembers making with his grandmother. There’s an array of small plates to follow, including grilled cuttlefish with braised pig trotters and coriander coentrada sauce. In the afternoon, a dedicated snack menu features sweet and savoury dishes that honour Lisbon’s café culture, including Lisboeta’s take on the traditional pastel de nata and a ‘bifana’ – an acorn-fed black pork sandwich. We also love the Adega wine cellar, a private space offering an intimate, elevated dining experience.

Visit Lisboeta.co.uk

The Aubrey, Knightsbridge
@LATEEFPHOTOPGRAPHY

Caravel, Regent’s Canal

This year saw the arrival of Caravel, a restaurant and bar from Fin and Lorcan – the sons of The French House and Sessions Art Club's Jon Spiteri. On the banks of the Regent’s Canal, the brothers have restored an old working barge with the help of Holborn Studios. The result is a stylish 40-seater dining room with an open kitchen. Lorcan’s menu is inspired by his time at Quo Vadis, Oldroyd and Studio Kitchen. Expect starters such as sesame prawn toast with spiced tartare; confit duck rissoles; and violet artichoke with kohlrabi. Main dishes span British, Italian and French classics, with white crab tagliatelle with fennel and garlic joined by hearty plates such as crispy pork belly with green beans and anchoïde, and roasted hake with confit potatoes and curry sauce. Desserts nod to Lorcan’s childhood favourites – look out for blood orange jelly with honeycomb, joined by almond cake with salted caramel ice-cream. New for winter 2022, the brothers have launched Bruno’s, a floating cocktail drinking den beside Caravel.

Visit TheStudioKitchen.co.uk

Mount St Restaurant & Rooms, Mayfair

Artfarm – the company behind the Fife Arms in Braemar, and Roth Bar & Grill in Somerset – has opened Mount St Restaurant & Rooms and The Audley Public House, a 200-year-old Mayfair landmark that’s been transformed into a next-level pub. Upstairs is the striking restaurant, which comprises four beautifully designed spaces bringing together food, drink and world-class modern art – including original pieces by Lucien Freud, Andy Warhol and Henri Matisse – and a show-stopping central bar made from enamelled lava stone with a crackle finish and curved glass panels. Championing British craftsmanship, management uniforms have been designed by Savile Row master tailor Kathryn Sargent using fine British wool; tableware is from Richard Brendon; and the wine glasses are part of a collaboration between Brendon and Jancis Robinson. Downstairs is the gorgeous wood-panelled pub. It’s the perfect place for a pint, or something stronger, and half a dozen oysters.

Visit MountStRestaurant.com

Tatale, Waterloo
Caravel, Regent’s Canal

Elis, Bethnal Green

Rafael Cagali, the chef and owner of two-Michelin-starred Da Terra in Bethnal Green, launched his second restaurant this autumn. Named Elis, the new space is a tribute to his mother, whose first restaurant and jazz bar in São Paulo was itself named after famed Brazilian musician Elis Regina. Elis offers a more relaxed interpretation of Cagali’s Brazilian-Italian heritage. Dishes on offer include cod fritters, gnocco fritto, crab tagliolini verde and baby monkfish tail with black tucupi glaze. The wine list offers a concise selection of 10-12 bottles curated by Keeling Andrew & Co, creators of Noble Rot. Seating 30 guests, Elis is in the historic Town Hall Hotel, with bespoke design elements in collaboration with Studio Nathan Miller.

Visit RestaurantElis.co.uk

Straker’s, Notting Hill

Thomas Straker – the chef best known for his popular cooking videos and comforting recipes on TikTok – opened his debut restaurant at the end of October. Just off Portobello, Straker’s brings Thomas’s ethos of ‘food you want to eat’ into this permanent space. The menu is heavily influenced by the Italian approach to cooking and the buzz around most dinner tables in Italy – expect to see a number of ‘primi’ pasta dishes such as pillowy potato gnocchi and ragù alongside larger plates of roasted turbot with buttered chanterelles and chives. For anyone after an aperitif or cocktail with dessert, a small but concise menu of contemporary classic cocktails offers negronis made with a blend of vermouths made in house or – our pick – a clarified margarita.

Visit Strakers.London

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