London's ethical food & fashion guide

London restaurants are, quite rightly, world-renowned for their creativity and innovation. Whether you’re looking for fine-dining in Mayfair, fast(ish) food in Brixton, a trendy Shoreditch opening or established Soho staple, the capital has all your culinary desires covered.

For meat lovers, the organic movement is bigger than ever and the nose-to-tail revolution offers a seemingly never-ending choice of dishes and interesting cuts sourced from farms who strive to provide truly superior animal husbandry. The options on offer for vegans and vegetarians has never been wider – with vegetable dishes even playing a starring role at restaurants that serve meat. Plus, new zero-waste and sustainable enterprises are now catering for the environment-conscious, too.

When it comes to the best restaurants we believe the recipe for success is a fairly simple one: sourcing top-quality ingredients and knowing exactly how to serve them (ideally with a friendly smile and a good wine recommendation)…

  • bobo

    BOBO SOCIAL

    Restaurants for meat lovers
    W1T

    You’ll feel like you’re dining in a friend’s kitchen in this burger restaurant in Charlotte Street.

    Even if their rare-bred beef burgers weren’t SO good it would be worth going for the starters and sides – salt & pepper crispy squid, chilli-chocolate latticed bacon, fillet steak strips…

    Order the alligator or kangaroo burgers if you’re in the experimental mood & wash them down with a couple of Old Fashioneds.

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  • Bonninghton

    Bonnington Cafe

    Top London restaurants
    Vauxhall, SW8

    Why go: Each night brings a different chef with a different menu to this vegetarian and vegan restaurant run by a collective of member cooks to Bonnington Square Community Centre. But every night holds the promise of good-value and a relaxed, bohemian atmosphere.

    Why else: Set amongst the beautiful community gardens of the square, candle-lit dinners and burning fires add to the intimate atmosphere. Plus it’s bring your own bottle, and no corkage is charged.

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  • Carnevale

    Carnevale

    Top London restaurants
    Barbican, EC1Y

    Why go: This independent Mediterranean restaurant offers a warm welcome and hearty selection of dishes in the City. Options include marinated helium and fig kebabs, aubergine and red pepper harissa casserole, and chickpea, lentil and spinach curry.

    Why else: If you a like cosy restaurants and home-style cooking then this is the restaurant for you.

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    DAYLESFORD

    Restaurants for meat lovers
    Various Locations

    You don’t get a much more simple farm-to-plate journey than these two cafes-come-delis in Notting Hill & Pimlico. The meat, bread & cheese comes from Daylesford’s two incredible organic farms in the Shires.

    I challenge you to arrive for brunch and leave without a bag full of goodies for ‘later’.

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  • Ethos II

    Ethos

    Top London restaurants
    Oxford Circus, W1

    Why go: Deliciously different is Ethos’, well, ethos. From the bright Scandi-style interior with trees dotted around the room, to the extensive, colourful menu which is inspired by dishes from around the globe, they have achieved just that. It’s self-service and pay by weight, but don’t let this put you off –  relaxed it may be, but their approach to food is anything but lazy.

    Why else: Everything is made from scratch in their kitchen from locally-sourced products and about half of their dishes are vegan. Plus, they serve wine and beer.

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    GBK

    Restaurants for meat lovers
    Various Locations

    When you’re in an unfamilar part of town, a familiar name and menu is never a bad thing.

    With 56 restaurants all over the UK, Gourmet Burger Kitchen is perfect for a casual catchup or quick bite.

    The only burger I can recommend here is the Buffalo burger, which comes from organic and biodynamic farm Laverstoke Park in Hampshire, which was started by Jody Scheckter who had aims to produce the “best-tasting, healthiest food without compromise”.

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  • Hawksmoor

    HAWKSMOOR

    Restaurants for meat lovers
    Seven London restaurants and one in Manchester

    Did you know that the best beef in the world originates from British breeds?

    The guys who started Hawksmoor do, which is why their steak comes from cows bred using traditional farming methods. They also know that a good steak goes best with good sides, good wine & good company- including the servers.

    Expect to waltz in & waddle out of any of the seven restaurants across London.

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  • 20-microsite-3-hix-soho-1-landing-top-banner-1-1600x768

    HIX

    Restaurants for meat lovers
    Various Locations

    Hix Soho has one of the coolest basement bars in London. If you’re the grazing type then its bar ‘snax’ are as exciting as its cocktails. Upstairs, the restaurant menu changes weekly, offering fresh & seasonal British food.

    There are Hix outposts across the capital, each offering something slightly different but all underlined by the same quality.

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  • Itadaki Zen

    Itadaki-zen London

    Top vegetarian restaurants
    Kings Cross, WC1X

    Why go: Itadaki-zen cuisine is based on the healing qualities of plants and food – Itadaki means ‘to take the food life’; Zen means ‘to fix, to mend’. Their sushi, tempura, noodles and soups are vegan and organic.

    Why else: You can learn more about the food and agriculture of Japanese cuisine at the free workshops held at the restaurant. Plus, look out for live music nights.

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  • f9b4e8_5e138ef1fde347fc87a6d34690184518

    JOSE PIZARRO

    Restaurants for meat lovers
    EC2M

    Good things come in threes, and the quality tapas-style offerings from acclaimed Spanish chef José Pizarro are testament to that.

    You can’t book at the intimate José Tapas Bar in Bermondsey Street, but you can at Pizarro Restaurant across the road and the newly launched José Pizarro in Broadgate Circus – a slick operation for the city crowd, with good ethics at its heart.

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  • Manna

    Manna

    Top London restaurants
    Primrose Hill, NW3

    Why go: With restaurants in London and LA, Manna’s ethos is healthy dishes with ‘connoisseur taste and gourmet presentation’. Expect dishes such as spaghetti and veatballs, polenta tarts, maki rolls and arancini.

    Why else: Everything at this vegan restaurant is made in-house, including the bread. All ingredients are sourced from socially responsible producers and even the wines and beers are organic and vegan.

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  • Mildreds

    Mildreds

    Top London restaurants
    Soho, Camden, Kings Cross

    Why go: The people behind Mildreds have been reinventing the vegetarian scene since 1988, offering a variety of salads, curries and cakes in trendy and lively settings.

    Why else: They use organic ingredients and small businesses for their supplies.

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  • Nativerestaurant

    Native

    Restaurants for meat lovers
    Covent Garden, WC2

    Why go: Native offers a seasonal British eating experience that is so fresh and wild they warn you might even find a piece of shot on your plate.

    Native has separate lunch and dinner menus, or guests can choose from a two- or three-course dinner set menu. Whichever you opt for, you can be sure to find the UK’s best foraged food and game.

    Centrally located in a quiet corner of Covent Garden, in Neal’s Yard bustling streets, their menu will appeal to both meat-lovers and vegetarians.

    Why else: Even their drinks menu is seasonal. There's a strong selection of wines and craft beer, plus they offer their very own foraged cordials and juices, too.

    Native's founders have strong links to the Great British Outdoors, one of the founders started at River Cottage HQ so has a passion for natural produce, and the other has turned her hand from falconry to wild food.

    They are so waste conscious that your receipt will be emailed to you, rather than printed.

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  • paradisegarage

    PARADISE GARAGE

    Restaurants for meat lovers
    E2

    Opened in July 2015, this is the latest venture from chef Robin Gill & his hotshot team.

    The modern take on British cuisine & nose-to-tail philosophy includes dishes such as lamp rump, charred cabbage, sour preserved lemon skin & sweetbread (offal).

    Order ten between you to share… & be prepared to stay for a couple of hours as you won’t be able to resist the cocktails & desserts.

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  • Poco

    Poco

    Best of the UK restaurants
    Bristol

    Why go: Multi-award winning Poco is open all day, every day. It offers both a brunch and lunch menu, plus a light tapas selection. Whatever time you're visiting an array of fresh, seasonal ingredients, will emerge from the kitchen. Food is inspired by world travel experiences, including Moroccan harissa and home-made chorizo and merguez sausages.

    The menu is completely organic and more than 90% of ingredients are sourced within 50-100 miles of the restaurant.

    Poco purchase all their ingredients from the source, and know exactly where the ingredients in the kitchen and liquids lining the bar are from. Their carefully selected English wines, Poco’s collaboration beer from Bristol Brewery, Wiper & True and their homemade liquors, infused with foraged and herbal ingredients are well worth a sample.

    Why else: With renowned ethical chef, Tom Hunt, at its helm it's no wonder Poco's ethical credentials are top notch. Poco monitor their kitchen wastage to avoid squander, meaning 95% to 100% of food waste is composted and recycled. Even the restaurant itself is built out of recycled materials and reclaimed timbers.

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  • Sagar

    Sagar

    Top London restaurants
    Covent Garden, Hammersmith, West End, Harrow

    Why go: South Indian vegetarian cuisine proudly cooked by chefs from Udupi, a small town in the coastal region of the Western Ghats. The colourful and flavoursome curries are served alongside rice dumplings with sambar and coconut chutney, soft lentil doughnuts, rice and lentil spicy pancakes.

    Why else: Whatever your dietary requirements – vegan, nut-free, garlic- and onion-free, wheat-free – this restaurant group has got it covered.

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  • SiloBrighton

    Silo

    Best of the UK restaurants

    Meaning: A Silo is a large, round tower on a farm for storing grain or winter food for cattle. It’s also a part of a system that does not communicate with, understand, or work well with other parts.

    Brighton

    Why go:  Silo’s ‘real food’ will nourish your body and your soul. They choose food sources that respect the natural order, with minimum processing, and create beautiful, tasty plates.

    They cater to your every need, serving breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner, from their on-site bakery, coffee house and brewery. Think bacon and crispy seaweed, sourdough, mussels and pork belly (but not all at once, obviously).

    Silo

    Why else: Located in a centuries old warehouse, Silo is an industrial-chic zero-waste restaurant. Their furniture is upcycled – tables made from industrial floor tiles, plates made from plastic bags – their deliveries arrive in re-usuable crates and they operate a nose-to-tail philosophy when it comes to meat.

    They could’t be further from a silo in the business sense, offering the services of their aerobic digester (to create compost) to their residential and commercial neighbours to help reduce waste across the local community.

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  • DukeofCambridge

    The Duke of Cambridge

    Restaurants for meat lovers
    Angel, N1

    Why go: Being the only certified organic pub in London is no small feat. The Duke of Cambridge takes pride in ethical food menu offering everything from a full-blown Sunday roast to sumptuous curries, vegetarian dishes, and tasty salads. Menus change seasonally, meaning the best organic vegetables are used from their partner farm, Riverford, in Devon. They also celebrate small independent breweries and independent wine merchants at the bar. And, there's always the options of a hot Fairtrade cuppa.

    The Duke of Cambridge's attitude to traceability is consistent with all their produce: their fish is sourced from Fish by Kernosashimi in Cornwall, whilst their Venison, pork and game is from Rhug Estates.

    Why else: Riverford at the Duke of Cambridge is run by an organic pioneering, married couple – Geetie Singh, founder of the Duke of Cambridge and Guy Watson, whose family owns organic farming company Riverford. Even the furniture which you sit on is either second hand, repurposed or recycled and their food waste is collected for generating energy.

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  • The Ethicurean

    The Ethicurean

    Best of the UK restaurants

    Meaning: Derived from the term Epicurean – the hedonistic philosophy of Epicurus which was devoted to sensual pleasures, especially food and drink – an ethicurean is a person who attempts to eat ethically without depriving oneself of taste.

    Bristol

    Why go: The Ethicurean serves modern British cuisine, locally and ethically sourced, in the magical Barley Wood Walled Garden in Bristol.

    The award-winning kitchen garden restaurant is founded on 'a sense of place', the idea of having a connection with the native land and the community who grow seasonal food upon it.

    They offer everything from three- to five-course set menus, Sunday lunch and morning as well as afternoon tea. They serve meat but veg is the star of The Ethicurean show. Plus they have a wonderfully experimental bar (and seasonal soft drinks).

    The Ethicurean

    Why else: You'll learn something new. Co-founders, two brothers Matthew and Iain Pennington, are keen foragers and aim to put at least one foraged garnish on each meal.

    “A lot of what we do is to try to help people understand the process behind food production,” says Matthew. “Guests commonly say ‘I had no idea you can eat that – it’s all over my garden and I thought it was weeds’.”

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  • The Gate

    The Gate

    Top London restaurants
    Hammersmith,W6 and Islington, N1

    Why go: ‘Indo-Iraqi Jewish’ is how the owners of The Gate describe their cooking, a blend of Indian and Arabic cuisines with  traditional Jewish food and a touch of European influence – think mezze platters, lentils, and aubergine schnitzels.

    Why else: It’s been going for 25 years and is somewhat of a London institution owned by two brothers, Adrain and Michael  Daniel, who have stayed true to their roots.

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  • The-Joint-London-meat-restaurant

    THE JOINT

    Restaurants for meat lovers
    SW9

    When mains include baby back ribs, 16-hour slow cooked pulled pork, or slow cooked shredded chicken, and the sides are BBQ riblets, Chilli Riblets, BBQ wings and hot wings, you know you’re in the right place for meat lovers.

    It just happens to be very convenient that you’re in the right place for lovers of beer and cocktails, too.

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  • Vanilla Black

    Vanilla Black

    Top vegetarian restaurants
    City of London, EC4

    Why go: Michelin-recommended Vanilla Black offers beautifully-presented modern vegetarian cuisine in a stylish setting.

    Why else: The restaurant comes highly recommended by critics and diners alike for special occasions.

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  • Wild Food Cafe

    Wild Food Cafe

    Top vegetarian restaurants
    Covent Garden, WC2

    Why go: If your vibe is a healthy diet then this raw-centric cafe is for you. The nutrient-rich dishes are created with passion and served with a smile. Come to eat or come to learn and share ideas with like-minded people.

    Why else: Supporters of independent businesses, ingredients are sourced from local independent suppliers and organic producers, with foraged items thrown into the mix.

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