British, Traditional Restaurants in Covent Garden
1. Rules British, Traditional restaurant in Covent Garden 35 Maiden Ln - WC2
“It could so easily be a tacky tourist trap and is a bit pricey”, but there remains a whole lot of love for this Dickensian landmark in Covent Garden (London’s oldest restaurant to operate continuously on the same site – since 1798). The “beautiful” period dining room is “steeped in West End history and character” and the menu is “proper old-school” too – “no surprises, nothing extraordinary, but well-cooked and professionally served” grills, game, pies and puds. “And they do wonderful cocktails upstairs” too in the “splendid bar”. Top Menu Tip – “well worth it for old favourites like steak ’n’ kidney pudding followed by sponge pudding”.
2. Simpson's in the Strand British, Traditional restaurant in Strand 100 Strand - WC2
“The roast beef commands attention!” – carved at the trolley in this famous grill room near The Savoy, serving “quintessentially British cooking in very generous portions”. Its performance has been very inconsistent in recent times and it was closed for an extended period over Covid, making it hard to recommend unequivocally, other than as a ‘slam dunk’ for entertaining foreigners on business.
3. The Savoy Hotel, Savoy Grill British, Traditional restaurant in Strand Strand - WC2
In Thatcher’s day, this was London’s power dining scene par excellence, and this “luxurious, opulent and dark” panelled chamber, just off the hotel foyer, remains “a fabulous room”, especially in which to do business. Run by Gordon Ramsay since 2003, it has ploughed a safe-if-unexciting culinary course in recent times, focused on classics such as Beef Wellington and Lobster Thermidor, with results being consistently decent, if unexceptional. But reports this year took a dive due to concerns about the very poor level of value. Even a positive account hailing “outstanding Arnold Bennett soufflé starters and a superb all-round experience” noted that “the eye-watering bill makes it one just for a special occasion”. For more sceptical souls, “the food is fine, but certainly not worth the price tag put on it”. In particular, critical wine buffs feel the “list is borderline robbery, with incomprehensible mark-ups that seem extreme even for the capital… and unfortunately there aren’t as many oligarchs around now daft enough to pay such prices!”
4. Cork & Bottle British, Traditional restaurant in Covent Garden 44-46 Cranbourn St - WC2
“Hidden right next to the horrors of Leicester Square!”, this 50-year-old wine cellar rates highly for its “really special ambience” and “knowledgeable and helpful” service. Will Clayton still runs the place on the lines laid down by founder Don Hewitson, although “the food offering has improved over time – not gourmet, but always a good pairing for the wine”. This year will see the millionth serving of the famous cheese & ham pie that is always on the menu.
5. Café in the Crypt, St Martin in the Fields British, Traditional restaurant in Covent Garden Duncannon St - WC2
Tucked away in the crypt beneath St Martin-in-the-Fields, this “handy” self-service cafeteria occupies a “fantastic space which always feels welcoming” and its no-frills soups, salads and hot plates are just the job for a “quick bite and coffee/glass of wine” when you visit the National Gallery across the road.
View full listings of 5 British, Traditional Covent Garden Restaurants
Popular Covent Garden Restaurant Searches
Covent Garden Restaurant News
Top Covent Garden Restaurants
Hot Newcomers & Coming Soon