So we’ve put our collective heads together and jotted down some of our favourite restaurants in East London — we’ve come up with 10 exceptional spots that deserve a place on your must-visit list.
Think we’ve missed some? Let us know.
Traditional, explosive Indian food with a bold, modern twist. Designed as a social experience, the small plates and sharing dishes will have you fighting over the last bite by the end.
And if that’s not enough to convince you, Gunpowder has Michelin Bib Gourmand status. Not quite a star, this award means they’re offering an exceptional experience at a reasonable price. Plus they offer meal kits and their cookbook to enjoy the taste of Gunpowder in your own home so it’s a win win.
A modern European bistro in a bright, converted warehouse. Bistrotheque gives you exquisite food in an unusually romantic setting — especially after the sun goes down. With a surprising selection of quirky cocktails and an array of meat and veggie treats on offer, there’s something to tickle everyone’s taste buds at Bistrotheque.
If you’re looking for a proper night out with dinner and a show, the Cockatoo is a new theatre downstairs at the restaurant — with a lineup of acts like fireball cabaret and a man to pet, it’s bound to be a good time. Or if you don’t fancy changing out of your pjs, they deliver locally too (obvs).
A stone’s throw from Spitalfields Market and Brick Lane, Som Saa is a stylish restaurant in an old fabric warehouse serving old school Thai cuisine and intriguing drinks. Once just a pop-up stall, the restaurant is a roaring success with a buzzing atmosphere — and the food has a real kick.
Som Saa also sells a range of ingredients at Raya Grocer in Borough Market and ‘cook at home’ boxes so you can (attempt to) recreate their flavours at home. May the odds be ever in your favour.
A spell-binding selection of authentic Burmese small and sharing plates in an eye-catching setting. The founder and head chef both have Burmese heritage and are the relentless driving force behind their customers’ growing love for Myanmar flavours.
The menu doesn’t fall in reams to the floor, but it does offer a big punch in the face (taste wise, of course). And with plenty of gluten-free and vegan options, it’s a great shout for a group.
East Mediterranean roots with modern, London spirit. The menu will make you delirious with delicious options so best of luck making a decision by the time the friendly waiting staff arrive. From dawn to dusk, Amber Restaurant delivers exceptional choices — and don’t get us started on the bottomless breakfast.
The concrete walls and high ceilings give the place a trendy, chic feel but the atmosphere and service are unbeatable.
Nose-to-tail cooking, nothing less and nothing wasted. Manteca has a small focus but it knows what it’s good at. With an eye for whole-animal butchery, hand-rolled pastas and wood-fired breads, it’s an Italian-inspired taste explosion to remember — plus the wine list is something else.
And it’s almost impossible to leave without treating yourself to something from their in-house salumeria (literally all the cold meats and sexy cheese you can imagine).
A small corner of Italy in the middle of Shoreditch with bright colours and bold dishes. This explosive menu mixes old Italian classics with incredible produce directly from 180 small producers in Italy.
On top of 50 barolos, you can choose from Gloria’s twist on well-loved cocktails like a You’re Mint Blitz and a Watermelon Sugar Mojito. And now they have a great delivery service, Napoli Gang, to fulfil all your Italian dreams from home.
The one-michelin-starred restaurant boasts high ceilings and rustic Spanish vibes, with an open wood fire grill at the heart of it.
The simple menu is executed to the highest standard and your mouth will be watering as soon as you step inside. BRAT is a must if you’re in the area and want a meal to remember.
Entering The Light Bar is unlike anything else you’ll have experienced. At home in an old Victorian power station, enormous windows and gorgeous brickwork will have you gazing around the room all evening. Thankfully the food will keep you focused.
Under new ownership, The Light Bar specialises in local produce and centres around seasonality — and that counts for their drinks too.
Delicious Peruvian flavours in a chilled atmosphere with a popular Pisco bar. Pachamama serves up harmony between Chinese and Peruvian cuisine in a spectacular selection of small dishes and sharing plates — delivered to you in groupings of sand, sea or soil. For an extra treat, Pachamama offers a tasting menu with vegan and vegetarian options for all to enjoy.