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Pies at the Pie Room at Holborn Dining Room in the Rosewood Hotel, one of the best places to eat pastry in London Calum Franklin

15 Great Pies to Eat in London This Winter

From 100 year old East End pie (and mash) to Calum Franklin’s works of modern art

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It’s high time (pie time?) for London to start getting real about dinner — those faffy small plates aren’t going to cut the mustard any longer. The capital is sliding towards the depths of winter and, as is always the case, will be at its grim and inhospitable worst for months. Outsiders might make fun of all the mashed potato, but it’s a vital second line of defence against the all-consuming drizzle and gloom. The first? Pie.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Beef and onion pie at Manzes

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76 High St, Walthamstow
London E17 7LD, UK

Been kicking it in east London for years but still haven’t been to a traditional pie and mash shop? Sort it out. L Manze opened in 1929 and thanks to its racing green and white tiles, mahogany booths and “exceptionally complete interior”, it’s got a Grade II listing. Classic meat pies come with a big smush of mash, and a ladleful of liquor (parsley sauce) — all for a fiver. The pies are quite shallow those, so the truly hungry might need to double up.

Instagram — kirstluckin.xo

2. Curry pie at Young Vegans

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60 Camden Lock Pl
London NW1 8AF, UK

No-one leaves this vegan truck feeling short-changed or gravy-deprived. It’s proper. The coconut oil pastry is thick and full of flavour and the fillings are cleverly imagined and delicious. The curry pie contains gently spiced butternut squash and kala chana peas (black chickpeas), and is served with mash and mango chutney on the side. Inspired.

Instagram — hello_annabel

3. Chicken and tarragon pie at The Drapers Arms

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44 Barnsbury St
London N1 1ER, UK

Beneath a hefty suet lid lurks an accomplished pie filling with a hint of bittersweet tarragon, which makes a pleasant change from all that leek (sorry to the leeks but they’re everywhere). This is a great weekend pie for people who like to go for Sunday roasts but not actually eat roasts, with some savoy cabbage and smoked chilli butter on the side.

Pie at The Drapers Arms, one of the best restaurants in Islington The Drapers Arms

4. Jerk chicken and porter pie at Piebury Corner – The Pie Bar

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3 Caledonian Rd, Kings Cross
London N1 9DX, UK

Whether or not the intersection of pie and Arsenal is worth caring about, this is a good spot for a casual pie. It started as a match day street stall, and now has a proper sit-down restaurant in King’s Cross. Pies used to be named after Arsenal players, but the links were mostly nonsensical, so they’ve dropped them (like Jack Wilshire). This fusion-ish jerk pie makes a spicy change. Pies can be eaten in, taken away hot, or bought to heat at home.

Piebury Corner

5. Beef shin, pickled walnut and onion pie at Marksman Public House

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254 Hackney Rd
London E2 7SJ, UK

Here at one of London’s dreamiest pubs, they have a way of making every dish feel like an event, not least this majestic circle of a pie that’s made to be shared. There’ll be just enough room on the table for a mustardy salad and those fried potatoes with burnt onion mayonnaise — a version of pie and chips that’s so good, Londoners barely deserve it.

Marksman Public House

6. Cheddar, sage and onion pie at Albion Shoreditch

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2-4 Boundary St
London E2 7DD, UK

Some days call for a hit of cheesy pastry and sometimes, it has to be enjoyed in situ (or Gregg’s would be the ticket). At Albion, substantial, tasty pies made with good cheddar from the Isle of Mull are best eaten with triple-cooked chips on the side (to dip in the cheesy filling — in for a carb, in for a pound of carbs) and a glass of wine (civilised!).

Albion

7. Pork pie at Holborn Dining Room

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High Holborn
London WC1V 7EN, UK

Anyone who has heard of the Internet has seen Calum Franklin’s masterpieces — a fish-shaped seabass en croute here, a flawlessly latticed wellington there. No big deal. All in a day’s work. One of his key concerns is the pork pie. He takes this (often bad and weird) British classic and makes it magnificent (and crown-shaped), with pork shoulder, pork leg, pancetta, smoked ham hock and fennel seeds.

Holborn Dining Room

8. Chicken and leek pie at The Wigmore

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15 Langham Place, Regent Street, Marylebone
London W1B 3DE, UK

This pie is a beautiful, fully-formed thing — as much a “pub pie” as this swish establishment is a “pub”. It’s got a thick, rich pastry outer (not just a lid), and the richest, most delicious filling laden with chicken and sweet, buttery leeks. It’s served with possibly the smoothest mash on this list, and a personal pot of mustard.

The Wigmore

9. Pie of the Day at Quo Vadis

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28-29 Dean St, Soho
London W1D 3LL, UK

This Soho icon, with its stained glass and golden light, seems an elaborate choice for a no-reason mid-winter dinner, so pare it right back to their pie of the day; it’s all one could ever need. Pie fillings tend to be brothy, stocky and loaded with multiple meats (chicken, duck and bacon or beef and venison). As Christmas approaches, stay on high alert for goose pie.

Quo Vadis

10. Steak and kidney pie at The Windmill

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6-8 Mill St, Mayfair
London W1S 2AZ, UK

For those who like pie and ale, plain and simple, this Mayfair pub is the one. As traditionalists, they’re particularly good at suet pastry. There’s a Christmas pie in the no-holds-barred style of the Christmas sandwich (turkey, ham hock, stilton, cranberry), but the steak and kidney is a “three times national championship pie”.

Windmill Mayfair

11. Chicken, mushroom and champagne pie at Bob Bob Ricard

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1 Upper James St, Soho
London W1F 9DF, UK

It’s not just a pretty face (or rather, an ornate, scalloped, golden pastry crust), although that does help — those who subscribe to the “too pretty to eat” school of dinner might find it difficult to tap through this illustrious lid. But those who like rich, creamy pie fillings will find it easy. This pie is best with a glass of champagne on the side, but in these digs, that’s a given.

Bob Bob Ricard

12. Fish pie at J Sheekey

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28-32 St Martin's Ct
London WC2N 4AL, UK

Fancy people have been lunching on this legendary pie (and champagne) for a hundred years and it turns out they’ve been right to do so. The pie is an individual, golden, breadcrumbed beauty to be worked through alone. Under a cheesy mashed potato top, there are chunks of white fish and salmon in a creamy, mustardy sauce. No egg, though — a possible point of contention.

13. Partridge, trotter, and prune pie at Rochelle Canteen at The ICA

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The Mall, St. James's
London SW1Y 5AH, UK

If anyone knows pie, Arnold and Henderson know pie. They’ll do magical, super-seasonal things with pie, like put chicken with girolles or wild garlic. And at their new ICA location, they’ve perfected these alluring, wintry, gamey numbers. This (or sometimes maybe a pheasant version) is on the menu until at least Christmas.

Rochelle Canteen

14. Pork, caramelised onion and black pudding pie at The Ginger Pig

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Borough Market, Borough High St
London SE1 1TL, UK

Everyone’s favourite bougie butcher makes bits and bobs for its bakery in the traditional style, because — it says — historically, pastry was a way of making meat go further (see also: Yorkshire puddings). They do sausage rolls and hot pies, but the picnic pies are where it’s at. The ingredients in this one are layered up a treat inside a hot water crust, with jelly made the old-fashioned way (with pigs’ trotters).

Ginger Pig

15. Beef and onion pie at M.Manze

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105 Peckham High St
London SE15 5RS, UK

The Manze family knew they were on to something, so they divided and conquered. Michele Manze was Luigi’s brother and his legacy is in the south — in Peckham, Tower Bridge and Sutton. His places’ pie games are just as strong, too.

Instagram — mrspbtt

1. Beef and onion pie at Manzes

76 High St, Walthamstow, London E17 7LD, UK
Instagram — kirstluckin.xo

Been kicking it in east London for years but still haven’t been to a traditional pie and mash shop? Sort it out. L Manze opened in 1929 and thanks to its racing green and white tiles, mahogany booths and “exceptionally complete interior”, it’s got a Grade II listing. Classic meat pies come with a big smush of mash, and a ladleful of liquor (parsley sauce) — all for a fiver. The pies are quite shallow those, so the truly hungry might need to double up.

76 High St, Walthamstow
London E17 7LD, UK

2. Curry pie at Young Vegans

60 Camden Lock Pl, London NW1 8AF, UK
Instagram — hello_annabel

No-one leaves this vegan truck feeling short-changed or gravy-deprived. It’s proper. The coconut oil pastry is thick and full of flavour and the fillings are cleverly imagined and delicious. The curry pie contains gently spiced butternut squash and kala chana peas (black chickpeas), and is served with mash and mango chutney on the side. Inspired.

60 Camden Lock Pl
London NW1 8AF, UK

3. Chicken and tarragon pie at The Drapers Arms

44 Barnsbury St, London N1 1ER, UK
Pie at The Drapers Arms, one of the best restaurants in Islington The Drapers Arms

Beneath a hefty suet lid lurks an accomplished pie filling with a hint of bittersweet tarragon, which makes a pleasant change from all that leek (sorry to the leeks but they’re everywhere). This is a great weekend pie for people who like to go for Sunday roasts but not actually eat roasts, with some savoy cabbage and smoked chilli butter on the side.

44 Barnsbury St
London N1 1ER, UK

4. Jerk chicken and porter pie at Piebury Corner – The Pie Bar

3 Caledonian Rd, Kings Cross, London N1 9DX, UK
Piebury Corner

Whether or not the intersection of pie and Arsenal is worth caring about, this is a good spot for a casual pie. It started as a match day street stall, and now has a proper sit-down restaurant in King’s Cross. Pies used to be named after Arsenal players, but the links were mostly nonsensical, so they’ve dropped them (like Jack Wilshire). This fusion-ish jerk pie makes a spicy change. Pies can be eaten in, taken away hot, or bought to heat at home.

3 Caledonian Rd, Kings Cross
London N1 9DX, UK

5. Beef shin, pickled walnut and onion pie at Marksman Public House

254 Hackney Rd, London E2 7SJ, UK
Marksman Public House

Here at one of London’s dreamiest pubs, they have a way of making every dish feel like an event, not least this majestic circle of a pie that’s made to be shared. There’ll be just enough room on the table for a mustardy salad and those fried potatoes with burnt onion mayonnaise — a version of pie and chips that’s so good, Londoners barely deserve it.

254 Hackney Rd
London E2 7SJ, UK

6. Cheddar, sage and onion pie at Albion Shoreditch

2-4 Boundary St, London E2 7DD, UK
Albion

Some days call for a hit of cheesy pastry and sometimes, it has to be enjoyed in situ (or Gregg’s would be the ticket). At Albion, substantial, tasty pies made with good cheddar from the Isle of Mull are best eaten with triple-cooked chips on the side (to dip in the cheesy filling — in for a carb, in for a pound of carbs) and a glass of wine (civilised!).

2-4 Boundary St
London E2 7DD, UK

7. Pork pie at Holborn Dining Room

High Holborn, London WC1V 7EN, UK
Holborn Dining Room

Anyone who has heard of the Internet has seen Calum Franklin’s masterpieces — a fish-shaped seabass en croute here, a flawlessly latticed wellington there. No big deal. All in a day’s work. One of his key concerns is the pork pie. He takes this (often bad and weird) British classic and makes it magnificent (and crown-shaped), with pork shoulder, pork leg, pancetta, smoked ham hock and fennel seeds.

High Holborn
London WC1V 7EN, UK

8. Chicken and leek pie at The Wigmore

15 Langham Place, Regent Street, Marylebone, London W1B 3DE, UK
The Wigmore

This pie is a beautiful, fully-formed thing — as much a “pub pie” as this swish establishment is a “pub”. It’s got a thick, rich pastry outer (not just a lid), and the richest, most delicious filling laden with chicken and sweet, buttery leeks. It’s served with possibly the smoothest mash on this list, and a personal pot of mustard.

15 Langham Place, Regent Street, Marylebone
London W1B 3DE, UK

9. Pie of the Day at Quo Vadis

28-29 Dean St, Soho, London W1D 3LL, UK
Quo Vadis

This Soho icon, with its stained glass and golden light, seems an elaborate choice for a no-reason mid-winter dinner, so pare it right back to their pie of the day; it’s all one could ever need. Pie fillings tend to be brothy, stocky and loaded with multiple meats (chicken, duck and bacon or beef and venison). As Christmas approaches, stay on high alert for goose pie.

28-29 Dean St, Soho
London W1D 3LL, UK

10. Steak and kidney pie at The Windmill

6-8 Mill St, Mayfair, London W1S 2AZ, UK
Windmill Mayfair

For those who like pie and ale, plain and simple, this Mayfair pub is the one. As traditionalists, they’re particularly good at suet pastry. There’s a Christmas pie in the no-holds-barred style of the Christmas sandwich (turkey, ham hock, stilton, cranberry), but the steak and kidney is a “three times national championship pie”.

6-8 Mill St, Mayfair
London W1S 2AZ, UK

11. Chicken, mushroom and champagne pie at Bob Bob Ricard

1 Upper James St, Soho, London W1F 9DF, UK
Bob Bob Ricard

It’s not just a pretty face (or rather, an ornate, scalloped, golden pastry crust), although that does help — those who subscribe to the “too pretty to eat” school of dinner might find it difficult to tap through this illustrious lid. But those who like rich, creamy pie fillings will find it easy. This pie is best with a glass of champagne on the side, but in these digs, that’s a given.

1 Upper James St, Soho
London W1F 9DF, UK

12. Fish pie at J Sheekey

28-32 St Martin's Ct, London WC2N 4AL, UK

Fancy people have been lunching on this legendary pie (and champagne) for a hundred years and it turns out they’ve been right to do so. The pie is an individual, golden, breadcrumbed beauty to be worked through alone. Under a cheesy mashed potato top, there are chunks of white fish and salmon in a creamy, mustardy sauce. No egg, though — a possible point of contention.

28-32 St Martin's Ct
London WC2N 4AL, UK

13. Partridge, trotter, and prune pie at Rochelle Canteen at The ICA

The Mall, St. James's, London SW1Y 5AH, UK
Rochelle Canteen

If anyone knows pie, Arnold and Henderson know pie. They’ll do magical, super-seasonal things with pie, like put chicken with girolles or wild garlic. And at their new ICA location, they’ve perfected these alluring, wintry, gamey numbers. This (or sometimes maybe a pheasant version) is on the menu until at least Christmas.

The Mall, St. James's
London SW1Y 5AH, UK

14. Pork, caramelised onion and black pudding pie at The Ginger Pig

Borough Market, Borough High St, London SE1 1TL, UK
Ginger Pig

Everyone’s favourite bougie butcher makes bits and bobs for its bakery in the traditional style, because — it says — historically, pastry was a way of making meat go further (see also: Yorkshire puddings). They do sausage rolls and hot pies, but the picnic pies are where it’s at. The ingredients in this one are layered up a treat inside a hot water crust, with jelly made the old-fashioned way (with pigs’ trotters).

Borough Market, Borough High St
London SE1 1TL, UK

15. Beef and onion pie at M.Manze

105 Peckham High St, London SE15 5RS, UK
Instagram — mrspbtt

The Manze family knew they were on to something, so they divided and conquered. Michele Manze was Luigi’s brother and his legacy is in the south — in Peckham, Tower Bridge and Sutton. His places’ pie games are just as strong, too.

105 Peckham High St
London SE15 5RS, UK

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