After a week of intensive reader voting, today we announce the winners of the eighth annual Eater Awards celebrating the chefs and restaurants that made the biggest impression on all 24 Eater cities over the past twelve months.
Here now are the places — from a Taiwanese fine-dining restaurant and new-wave wine bar to NYC imports and innovative delivery-only concepts — that have taken the London food scene by storm this year. Thank you to everyone who voted last week, and congratulations to the winners of both the readers’ choice and editor’s choice awards. Read on to learn more about this year’s best of the best.
Restaurant of the Year 2017
The carousel of rotating chefs at this new-wave Hackney wine bar and shop have, for the last twelve months, been responsible for some of the best modern gastronomy in London. This has been the pared-back playground for a quartet of unusually innovative and well-travelled chefs. It is remarkable that the means given to said chefs is but two induction hobs at the back of the shop’s central sharing table. William Gleave, Tim Spedding and Giuseppes Lacorazza and Belvedere have collectively positioned P. Franco as one of the most unpredictably brilliant and exciting places to eat in town. And to drink. Manager Phil Bracey’s enthusiasm for (natural) wine is infectious.
Reader’s Choice Restaurant of the Year — XU
Chef of the Year
Andrew Wong, A. Wong
For ages, the area around Victoria station was considered a culinary desert. Five years ago, at the vanguard of what is now a neighbourhood renascent, Andrew Wong has reimagined modern Chinese cooking. But it was this year that his outstanding lunchtime dim sum (which can be ordered by the individual piece) and equally intricate plates at dinner, went up a notch, and finally earned the restaurant its first Michelin star. In October the chef also announced that, together with his wife Natalie, he would be opening a second restaurant — reportedly called Madame Wong — in the Bloomberg Arcade early in the new year.
Reader’s Choice Chef of the Year — David Gingell, Westerns Laundry
Design of the Year
Juan Santa Cruz’s clubby Mayfair restaurant not only looks magnificent, it feels special. Its dark wood, gold fixtures and Napoleonic blues lend the room a moody decadence too rarely given to new sites.
Readers’ Choice Design of the Year — XU
Restaurant Expansion of the Year
Rochelle Canteen at the ICA
Margot Henderson and Melanie Arnold run one of London’s most revered (and semi-secret) restaurants: Rochelle Canteen, on Arnold Circus in Shoreditch, has been a place to eat for those in the industry or in-the-know, always an exhibition of minimalist, seasonal British cooking. In October, the duo took the concept to a bigger, altogether more public space at the Institute of Contemporary Arts on The Mall, near Trafalgar Square. Taking over the cafe, the succession could not have been more seamless: Rochelle Canteen 2.0 sets a new benchmark for gallery dining in London.
Readers’ Choice Restaurant Expansion of the Year — Red Rooster
Food Via Delivery of the Year
Motu’s curry house classics (chicken tikka masala and lamb shank roganjosh) have been the outstanding addition to London’s booming restaurant delivery scene this year. Its success ought not to be a surprise, since its creators — JKS Restaurants — operate not only two Michelin-starred South Asian restaurants (Gymkhana and Trishna) but also Hoppers, the Sri Lankan stunner in Soho that doubled its own portfolio this year. Motu is one of the founding members of the Deliveroo Editions programme, the so-called ‘dark kitchens’ that see restaurant operators run delivery-only initiatives from shipping containers in car parks.
Readers’ Choice Food Via Delivery of the Year — CHIK’N