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Maria Luisa Riascos-Solis’ fried chicken at La Barra in Elephant and Castle is some of the city’s best

The Best-Value Restaurants in London

90 restaurants, every postcode, and over 30 cuisines

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The Best-Value Restaurants in Central London

Maria Luisa Riascos-Solis’ fried chicken at La Barra in Elephant and Castle is some of the city’s best

The Best-Value Restaurants in London

90 restaurants, every postcode, and over 30 cuisines

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The Best of the Best-Value Restaurants in London

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The Best-Value Restaurants in West London

These restaurants span all the neighbourhoods and cuisines that define London. They’re the places to visit two, three times a week for cooking that tends towards home and comfort. They’re a reminder that “great value” sometimes just means ... Great.

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The Best-Value Restaurants in South West London

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The Best-Value Restaurants in South East London

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The Best-Value Restaurants in East London

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The Best-Value Restaurants in North London

London is obsessed with finding a bargain, but the increasing importance of terms like ‘budget’ and ‘cheapness’ brings with it some problems. What is a cheap eat: Something that costs £20 for a meal? £10 for a lunch? £5 for a snack? This fixation on price means that the “cheap eats” are often relegated to a lower rung than more feted restaurants — best of the rest, a last resort for that last weekend before pay day.

But cheapness can be suggestive of other, more important qualities too. It suggests value — a virtue in scarce supply in a city of rising rents and costs. It suggests community, for those cafes and restaurants have chosen to serve the needs of the local — often a working class or immigrant — population. It suggests generosity, and the primacy of the idea that a restaurant should leave its guests fuller and happier than when they arrived.

The Eater London 38 is a guide to the most innovative and essential restaurants in London, the restaurants that have turned London into a destination food city and the most vital place to eat out in Europe. Every restaurant in the six guides below is essential in another way: for Londoners, these restaurants span all the neighbourhoods and cuisines that define the city. They’re the places to visit two, three times a week for cooking that tends towards home and comfort.