A series looking at the best dining options within walking distance (1 mile) of city landmarks worldwide. Here, we offer our 5 IDEAL restaurants near London Victoria Station.
With over 75 million passengers passing through London Victoria annually, and the station’s main thoroughfare essentially one massive pasty passage, it’s no wonder hungry travellers are constantly bemoaning the lack of dining options within the station complex. Do they really need five Upper Crusts? An exaggeration maybe, but to eat well here, it’s best to step out and into the Westminster wilderness for a proper feed. Here are our favourite places close by; 5 of the best restaurants near London Victoria Station.
HAI CENATO (0.1 miles)
When a celebrity chef announces they’re taking on a sacred classic from another country, alarm bells ring. But Jason Atherton’s pizzas at New York-style eater Hai Cenato tick all the boxes; their slightly sour, chewy, thin and blistered bases (woodfired in a bespoke oven) are faithful to the Neapolitan design, yet toppings are inventive, modern but restrained.
The pastas and risottos are superb too, and at a remarkably low price for the quality (you’ll eat well for under twenty quid). It’s just a couple of minute’s walk away from the station, service is prompt, and the restaurant’s open from midday all the through to 10:30 pm; basically, it’s the perfect place for a quick bite if you’ve time to kill between journeys.
THE OTHER NAUGHTY PIGLET (0.3 miles)
The original Naughty Piglets, in Brixton, does small plates of a Modern British bent with flair and precision. The more recently opened sister restaurant, the Other Naughty Piglet, keeps this vibe going, but with more of a focus on the wine; all natural and mostly delicious.
The food menu here is a little longer, a little more varied (though despite the name, isn’t particularly porcine heavy) but the focus is still on fine ingredients cooked with respect and a touch of invention. We particularly loved their XO linguine with cured egg yolk; proper punchy, a load of umami, and a seductive mouth feel…superb.
Connected to the Other Palace Theatre, this is the perfect place for a pre-show meal; opening times accommodate accordingly, with tables and stools available from 5:15 pm, and a pre-theatre menu which is a steal at two or three courses for £18 or £22 respectively.
A.WONG (0.3 miles)
Now with a shiny Michelin star above the door, A.Wong has come a long way since its opening in 2013. This ‘upmarket Chinese eatery’ (their words) is actually refreshingly welcoming, inclusive and reasonably priced, considering the level of cooking going on here.
Dim sum takes centre stage at lunch with a dedicated menu of intricate and playful dumplings, all delivered with downright deliciousness at their heart. At dinner, the lights dim some, the mood gets a little more sultry and dishes more complex. On our last visit, the sea urchin udon was a particular highlight.
LORNE (0.3 miles)
If you’re looking for proper plates – the menu, in a revolutionary move, is laid out in sections of starters, mains, and desserts – of unpretentious yet utterly flawless French-ish grub, then Lorne will see you right.
It’s a reassuring space to spend time in; with a neighbourhood restaurant atmosphere, service on point – warm, gracious and knowledgeable – and the food generous and soulful. It’s not the cheapest, but you get what you pay for. A piece of fallow deer was beautifully cooked, with edge to edge pinkness and a good crust coming in at just the right level of bitter, paired with pomme puree and boudin noir. Yep, this is unapologetically traditional in its pairings, but sometimes, that’s exactly what you need, right?
DOMINIQUE ANSEL BAKERY (0.4 miles)
You’re probably already well aware of the foodie phenomenon ‘the Cronut’. And rest assured, it’s here, and as excellent as those queues at Dominique Ansel’s original New York outpost suggest. Though worth the trip for that cronut alone, there’s plenty more to feast on at this iconic pastry chef’s first London venture; loads of sweet treats, of course, but also a dedicated, savoury brunch menu and afternoon tea, too. Lovely stuff.