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Chefs Pepe Belvedere and Will Gleave cooking; manager Phil Bracey, far right, at P. Franco
Ben McMahon

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The Top Restaurant Standbys of 2017

In another year of relentless new openings, where did Londoners keep going back to?

It is the tradition at Eater to end the year with a survey of friends, rovers of the industry, critics and professional eaters. This year, the group were asked eight questions, spanning meal of the year to biggest dining grievance. Their answers will appear throughout this week. Responses are related in no particular order; cut, pasted, and unedited below. First up, it's time for restaurant standbys of the year.

Grace Dent, former ES Magazine — and soon-to-be The Guardian — restaurant critic: Brasserie Zedel, Smokestak, The Laughing Heart, Singburi in Leytonstone and Zia Lucia.

Adam Coghlan, Eater London editor: Koya Soho, Marksman, P Franco, Delhi Grill, Noble Rot, Roti King, Xi’an Impression, St. John (both the bar at Smithfield and Bread and Wine), Lyle’s.

George Reynolds, Eater London contributor: Oldroyd. BAM continues to go from strength; Noble Rot is still an immensely civilised place for pretty much whatever mood you find yourself in. And P Franco (duh).

Victoria Stewart, food writer: Bar Douro; Saba: Taste of Ethiopia (street food 'restaurant' on Brixton Station Market); Casa Andita; Smokestak.

James Hansen, food writer, editor and Eater London contributor: P Franco, a fixed joy in a turning world, in spite of the spirit of change that makes it the unique place that it is; St. John Bread & Wine, which, to appropriate one of Henderson’s famous phrases, is nothing less than steadying, and Santa Maria — for my money the best pizza in London, either enjoyed in its snug of a restaurant, or fresh out a blue/silver branded hotbox.

Koya in Soho, the perfect breakfast spot, that forms part of the best 24 hour restaurant travel itinerary for London — where to eat with one day in the city
Shuko Oda at Koya Bar
Ola Smit/Eater London

Emma Hughes, freelance food writer and Eater London contributor: Kiln, Bao Fitz, Temper Soho, Llewellyn's, Lorne, Xu, Humble Grape in Islington, Perilla, Morito Exmouth Market's breakfast, Noble Rot, Quo Vadis forever and always.

Josh Barrie, food writer and Eater London contributor: Still not bored of Hakkasan, Zedel (lol, obvs), Lyle's even.

Suze Olbrich, freelance food writer and Eater London contributor: P Franco, Brawn, The Marksman, Ombra, Rochelle, Elliot’s, Legs, Club Mexicana, The Typing Room, El Pastor (I like the tuna : p), Luca (bar). (I need to leave the east more, eh?)

lamb offal flatbread at Black Axe Mangal, one of London’s most iconic dishes
Flatbread, terrine and chicharron at Black Axe Mangal
Ola Smit/Eater London
Noble Rot restaurant is opening a new wine bar in Soho on the site of the Gay Hussar
Slipsole, soup and bread at Noble Rot
Ola Smit/Eater London

Zeren Wilson, restaurant discoverer and author of Bitten & Written: A. Wong, Winemakers Deptford, Black Axe Mangal, Westerns Laundry, Grand Trunk Road, The River Café, Bombetta, Pide, Skewd.

Chloe Scott-Moncrieff, food writer and co-founder of the YBFs: If I don’t want to try anywhere new, I’d fall back on: Moro, St. John, Anglo, The Quality Chophouse.

Sophie Brown, freelance food writer: This will be a very good reflection of my refined (basic) dining preferences: Breddos, Padella and my eternal favourite; Ciao Bella on Lamb's Conduit Street.

Felicity Spector, Channel 4 News writer and pastry lover: Honey and Co, Oldroyd, Quo Vadis, Clipstone, Salon.

Laurel Ives, former food editor of The Sunday Times The Dish: I found myself in Noble Rot again and again. I love the relaxed atmosphere and the retro charm of Lambs Conduit Street. Sometimes I treated myself to Paul Weaver’s top flight food in the restaurant, but mostly I would prop up the bar with friends, nursing a serious glass of wine and a standout cheese plate. I often found myself drawn to comfort food: Dishoom with the family, Padella for a quick pasta lunch, Honey & Co for middle eastern magic, Quo Vadis for the best of British and Kiln for a fiery Thai kick.

Delhi Grill

21 Chapel Market, , England N1 9EZ 020 7278 8100 Visit Website

Santa Maria

11 Bond Street, , England W5 5AP 020 8840 4998 Visit Website


88 Saint John Street, , England EC1M 4EH 020 3859 3000 Visit Website

St. John

26 Saint John Street, , England EC1M 4AY 020 7251 0848 Visit Website


120 Morning Lane London E9 6LH, London, 440203 441 8765 Visit Website


32 Exmouth Market, , England EC1R 4QE 020 7278 7007 Visit Website


19 Ganton Street, , England W1F 9BN 020 3019 8680 Visit Website


593 High Road Leytonstone, , England E11 4PA 020 8281 4801 Visit Website


1731 New Hampshire Avenue Northwest, , DC 20009 (202) 964-6790 Visit Website

El Pastor

6-7A Stoney Street, , England SE1 9AA Visit Website

Black Axe Mangal

156 Canonbury Road, , England N1 2UP Visit Website

Winemakers Deptford

209 Deptford High Street, , England SE8 3NT 020 8305 6852 Visit Website


8 Hanway Place, London, W1T 1HD Visit Website

Typing Room

Town Hall Hotel, Patriot Square, London, E2 9NF Visit Website


5 Clipstone Street, , England W1W 6BB 020 7637 0871 Visit Website


12 Upper St Martin's Lane, , England WC2H 9FB 020 7420 9320 Visit Website

Humble Grape

2 Battersea Rise, , England SW11 1ED 020 3620 2202 Visit Website

The River Café

Rainville Road, , England W6 9HA 020 7386 4200 Visit Website

Roti King

40 Doric Way, , England NW1 1LH 020 7387 2518 Visit Website


Unit 1 Station Approach Snaresbrook London, E11 1QE, London, 440203 871 0890 Visit Website


83 Rue De La Gauchetière Ouest, Ville-Marie, QC H2Z 1C2 (514) 875-1388


53 Foy Lane, , NSW 2000 (02) 8099 8799 Visit Website

Quo Vadis

26-29 Dean Street, , England W1D 3LL 020 7437 9585 Visit Website

Noble Rot

51 Lamb’s Conduit St, London, Greater London WC1N 3NB +44 20 7242 8963 Visit Website


18 Market Row, , England SW9 8LD 020 7501 9152 Visit Website


344 Upper Street, , England N1 0PD 020 8617 9010 Visit Website


49 Columbia Road, , England E2 7RG 020 7729 5692 Visit Website

Westerns Laundry

34 Drayton Park, , England N5 1PB 020 7700 3700 Visit Website


34-36 Exmouth Market, , England EC1R 4QE 020 7833 8336 Visit Website


6 Southwark Street, , England SE1 1TQ Visit Website


30 Rupert Street, , England W1D 6DL 020 3319 8147 Visit Website


76 Wilton Rd, London, Greater London SW1V 1DE +44 20 3327 0210 Visit Website


254 Hackney Rd, London, Greater London E2 7SJ +44 20 7739 7393 Visit Website

P Franco

107 Lower Clapton Road, , England E5 0NP Visit Website


35 Sclater Street, , England E1 6LB 020 3873 1733 Visit Website

The Laughing Heart

277 Hackney Road, , England E2 8NA 020 7686 9535 Visit Website