Bibendum Oyster Bar

Best Seafood Restaurants in London

Food & Drink /


Where to get your fresh fish fix in the capital

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A seafood platter paired with a crisp glass of wine evokes memories of seaside lunches in the Med – but fish restaurants are also a pivotal part of the British dining scene. The UK shores are home to an abundance of fresh fish, plus some of the world’s top seafood chefs – from Rick Stein to Nathan Outlaw. Here we highlight the best seafood restaurants in London, from long-standing institutions to neighbourhood newbies.

Best Seafood Restaurants in London

 

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Sexy Fish

Sexy Fish

Arguably the city’s most flamboyant restaurant, Richard Caring’s Sexy Fish is a sight to behold. Apparently it cost £15 million to produce – which won’t come as a surprise to anyone who has stepped inside. With bronze Damien Hirst-designed mermaids adorning the bar, a coral reef ceiling, a giant gold-plated crocodile on display and walls running with water, the space feels like some kind of mystical, underwater-inspired wonderland. The theme is continued in the Asian-inspired menu, which is suitably lavish. Think decadent seafood platters, sashimi and maki, plus a selection of small plates like tuna tataki, grilled tiger prawn skewers and prawn gyoza. Expect to splurge. sexyfish.com

Scott's

Scott’s

Back in 1851, a young fishmonger named John Scott opened an oyster warehouse in Haymarket. Over the years it evolved into a restaurant, relocating to its current site on Mayfair’s Mount Street in the ‘60s. Nowadays, Scott’s stands as one of London’s most famous seafood institutions – and one of the capital’s five oldest restaurants. It has always been a glamorous spot, though an extensive refurbishment spearheaded by Martin Brudnizki brought the venue back to life after a lull. Seasonal menus offer the finest seafood you could imagine, with perennial classics including the seared sea bass, the blackened miso salmon and the lobster thermidor. There’s a dedicated caviar menu – ranging from platinum to £875 oscietra – as well as a wide selection of oysters, calling to be washed down with a glass of fizz. scotts-restaurant.com

Carabineros Prawns BBQ Prawn on the Lawn

Prawn on the Lawn

This Islington fish restaurant began its life as a small fishmonger with an eight-cover seafood bar and no space for a kitchen. Yet before long, it became TripAdvisor’s best-rated restaurant in London. Eventually it moved to a bigger spot down the road, but the friendly, neighbourhood feel has never been lost. Prawn on the Lawn still serves as a fishmonger as well as a restaurant, meaning the menu changes daily depending on which fish is available. There’s a mix of small plates – think juicy Szechuan prawns, seared tuna with soy and Porthilly mussels – alongside whole or filleted fish for the table, cooked classic, Thai or Chinese style. Despite being bang in the middle of north London, the eatery has a seaside feel – though if you want the real deal, a second site has popped up in Padstow. prawnonthelawn.com

Angler Roof Terrace

Angler

Perched atop South Place Hotel, Angler’s 40-seat west-facing roof terrace boasts glorious views of the city. Chef Gary Foulkes heads up the Michelin-starred kitchen, which spotlights the best of British fish: at the moment that’s dishes like Cornish turbot with scallop stuffed courgette and Dorset crab with bouillabaisse sauce. This summer Angler has partnered with No. 3 Gin on a special cocktail menu – the Amalfi Spritz, mixed with elderflower liqueur and Sorrento lemon cordial, slips down rather well on a sunny afternoon. anglerrestaurant.com

Orasay

Orasay

The third venture from culinary duo Jackson Boxer and chef Andrew Clarke – the pair behind St Leonards in Shoreditch – is inspired by Orosay, a small tidal island in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland. In comparison to the spacious St Leonards, Orasay is a cosy, unpretentious spot with minimalist wooden tables, terracotta-cushioned benches and flickering candles. Seafood is the focus, with a seasonal menu based on what the fishermen send from their catch – recent dishes have included Brixham pollock with smoked pepper and grilled broccoli, and tagliatelle peppered with brown shrimp. orasay.london

Best Jazz Bars: Bibendum Oyster Bar

Bibendum Oyster Bar

If you’re craving oysters and champagne, Claude Bosi’s South Kensington hangout will not disappoint. Found on the ground floor of the refurbished Michelin Building – now named after the Michelin man, Bibendum – the restaurant is heaven for seafood enthusiasts. Naturally there are lots of oysters – choose from Jersey, Maldon, Irish and more – served with shallot vinegar, cereal bread and salted butter. But you can also get glitzy seafood platters (add native lobster if you’re feeling particularly decadent), grilled fish of the day and small plates like Cornish crab quiche and Scottish mussels. claudebosi.com

Chicama

Chicama

The second restaurant from the Pachamama group, Chelsea’s Chicama is a charming restaurant named after a coastal town in Peru – not the word chic, although that does describe it well. Unlike its sister, Chicama is meat-free, focusing instead on fish served small plates-style. Seafood is delivered daily from Cornwall and given a South American twist – the squid is marinated in garlic and ají panca, for instance, while the trout is cooked in banana leaf and served with red quinoa. Pisco Sours are the natural drink of choice, though the Spicy Margarita shouldn’t be overlooked. Eat al fresco on the plant-filled outdoor terrace, or watch the chefs working their magic up close from the pastel pink marble counter, which looks onto the open kitchen. chicamalondon.com

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