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Private dining room for a Christmas Party at Quality Chop House Courtesy of The Quality Chop House

13 Restaurants for an Unforgettable Christmas Party

Ditch the dry turkey breast and take workmates somewhere worth celebrating

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Are there three more ominous words in workplace parlance than “team Christmas lunch”? It usually means choosing between paying a premium for a souped-up turkey TV dinner or suffering a strained “festive” interpretation of the venue’s standard fare (Christmas tapas, anyone?) It needn’t be like this, though. Plenty of London’s best restaurants are doing seasonal feasting menus over the next four weeks that are the equals of their regular offerings, and many have private rooms to cater for larger groups. So here it is: Eater’s list of places in London to have a work shindig — without a sprout in sight. Well. Perhaps a few.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. The Quality Chop House

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88-94 Farringdon Rd, Clerkenwell
London EC1R 3EA, UK

A delightfully Dickensian Christmas beckons in Clerkenwell, courtesy of Shaun Searley. Eat either in the dining room or book the private room upstairs and order from the December “feasting” menu (£54). It features options of the Dexter beef or Mangalitza pork that made the kitchen’s name, plus a range of bar-raising starters like pastrami-cured salmon or smoked cod’s roe with chicory and walnuts. Fosse Meadows turkey is the centre piece, which is served with beautifully executed and arranged trimmings.

2. Salon Brixton

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18 Market Row, Brixton
London SW9 8LD, UK

Salon’s seasonal offering didn’t disappoint when it was just one menu in previous years, and now it’s received an upgrade, with three different casts of dishes available at £39, £49, or £69. The centrepieces are as follows: a chicken and chanterelle pie; porchetta, rolled with citrus and served with fennel; and roast duck with a honey, thyme, and lavender glaze.

3. Trullo

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300-302 St Paul's Rd, Highbury
London N1 2LH, UK

Trullo’s serene, unfussy but celebratory Italian cooking is perfect for the season: a private room offers bright castelfranco salad with clementine, or some truly moreish shallot fritti; then across a range of price points, perhaps some hake, Hampshire pork, or the much-lauded T-bone steak with crispy potatoes and gorgonzola fonduta.

4. St John Bread and Wine

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94-96 Commercial St, Shadwell
London E1 6LZ, UK

Feasting is of course the name of the game at St. John Bread and Wine, with menus themed around game, fish, beef, and, for the larger groups, an entire suckling pig designed to feed 12 or 18. There’s also a menu that consists literally of goose, followed by goose, followed by goose, for those wishing to have a gander.

5. Gloria

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54-56 Great Eastern St, Shoreditch
London EC2A 3QR, UK

Maximalism is the memo at Big Mamma Group’s Gloria, and with a menu as yet unreleased expect to follow in the wildly extra pasta in wheels of cheese, towering meringue pies, and tiramisus more of largesse than finesse that has made this Shoreditch hotspot so irresistibly popular.

6. Black Axe Mangal

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156 Canonbury Rd, Highbury
London N1 2UP, UK

Black Axe Mangal does “boozy weekday lunches” and weekend parties, so it’s the perfect place to hire if in search of a little less traditional festive feast. A new set menu structure following reopening has left its raucous precision undimmed, with smoked spiced duck with quince; a baked Tunworth cheese, Lyonnaise onions, and white truffle flatbread; beef and bone marrow; and a by-now institutional deep-fried mince pie clocking in at £49.99 apiece.

7. Forza Wine

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The rooftop, 133 Rye Ln, Peckham
London SE15 4ST, UK

A rooftop bar might sound like an unlikely place for a December event, but given a heated terrace and the fact that inside space exists, Peckham’s Italian darling’s combination of just-one-more snacks, smart cocktails, and irreverently welcoming vibe makes it just the ticket for a wintry night out.

8. Sabor

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35-37 Heddon St, Mayfair
London W1B 4BR, UK

Sabor has a counter and a tapas bar, but the Christmas feasting should happen at the Asador, with whole suckling pig, prawn croquetas, Galician octopus, and more on offer for groups of four or more. Some tapas downstairs to kick things off wouldn’t hurt either.

9. Holborn Dining Room

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252 High Holborn, Holborn
London WC1V 7EN, UK

Groups of 10 and above can go trad with a side of exquisite pastry at Holborn Dining Room, with turkey, cured salmon, and clementines — well, mandarins — represented across a hearty feasting menu. That’s the £70 affair; a £90pp menu brings in the big guns, with lobster thermidor tart, pate en croûte, and an onion squash with spelt risotto and Spenwood cheese. Yes, it’s a pastry premium, but with Calum Franklin on the dough, it’s one worth paying.

10. The Camberwell Arms

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65 Camberwell Church St, Camberwell
London SE5 8TR, UK

Groups of four and above can enjoy the plentiful, family style affair at this south London institution, with crispy sprouts and pickled onions a noble starter and an overnight osso bucco the grandstand main. As with this pub’s esteemed Sunday roasts, it’s the sides — celeriac dauphinoise; roast potatoes with herbs and garlic — that look set to steal the show.

11. OMBRA Bar & Restaurant

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1 Vyner St, Cambridge Heath
London E2 9DG, UK

Mitshel Ibrahim’s Ombra excels when measuring for generosity as much as quality, with its restless menu very much suited to sharing in the winter. A shared quintet of starters includes duck and mandarin terrine; the pneumatic gnocco fritto here with wild boar mortadella and winter truffle; and Jerusalem artichokes with chestnut, while the main event is either trout with radicchio, potatoes, and cime di rapa or a luxurious slow-cooked egg with potato and porcini. Tiramisu is the obvious supplement dessert to a mandarin pannacotta.

12. 40 Maltby Street

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40 Maltby St
London SE1 3PA, UK

This Bermondsey wonder always runs a Christmas menu in the few days before the big one, and it’s always pretty secretive about what is actually on it. With no reservations and, it is guaranteed, a crowd of disciples, this is the reliable winter wildcard for smaller groups. Diners might not know exactly what dishes to expect, but carefully cooked vegetables, peerless pastry, and warming, agreeable desserts will definitely be on offer.

13. Honey & Co. Bloomsbury

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54 Lamb's Conduit St
London WC1N 3LW, UK

Sarit Packer and Itamar Srulovich have always favoured communal feasting and sharing as the best way to experience their impeccable mezze, grills, and pastry work, so a Christmas party at Honey & Co is always going to be a winner. A winter menu features poached quince with curd cheese, cinnamon falafel, and pot-roasted beef with pumpkin, and these dishes are likely to be at the heart of a Christmas menu served on platters to share.

1. The Quality Chop House

88-94 Farringdon Rd, Clerkenwell, London EC1R 3EA, UK

A delightfully Dickensian Christmas beckons in Clerkenwell, courtesy of Shaun Searley. Eat either in the dining room or book the private room upstairs and order from the December “feasting” menu (£54). It features options of the Dexter beef or Mangalitza pork that made the kitchen’s name, plus a range of bar-raising starters like pastrami-cured salmon or smoked cod’s roe with chicory and walnuts. Fosse Meadows turkey is the centre piece, which is served with beautifully executed and arranged trimmings.

88-94 Farringdon Rd, Clerkenwell
London EC1R 3EA, UK

2. Salon Brixton

18 Market Row, Brixton, London SW9 8LD, UK

Salon’s seasonal offering didn’t disappoint when it was just one menu in previous years, and now it’s received an upgrade, with three different casts of dishes available at £39, £49, or £69. The centrepieces are as follows: a chicken and chanterelle pie; porchetta, rolled with citrus and served with fennel; and roast duck with a honey, thyme, and lavender glaze.

18 Market Row, Brixton
London SW9 8LD, UK

3. Trullo

300-302 St Paul's Rd, Highbury, London N1 2LH, UK

Trullo’s serene, unfussy but celebratory Italian cooking is perfect for the season: a private room offers bright castelfranco salad with clementine, or some truly moreish shallot fritti; then across a range of price points, perhaps some hake, Hampshire pork, or the much-lauded T-bone steak with crispy potatoes and gorgonzola fonduta.

300-302 St Paul's Rd, Highbury
London N1 2LH, UK

4. St John Bread and Wine

94-96 Commercial St, Shadwell, London E1 6LZ, UK

Feasting is of course the name of the game at St. John Bread and Wine, with menus themed around game, fish, beef, and, for the larger groups, an entire suckling pig designed to feed 12 or 18. There’s also a menu that consists literally of goose, followed by goose, followed by goose, for those wishing to have a gander.

94-96 Commercial St, Shadwell
London E1 6LZ, UK

5. Gloria

54-56 Great Eastern St, Shoreditch, London EC2A 3QR, UK

Maximalism is the memo at Big Mamma Group’s Gloria, and with a menu as yet unreleased expect to follow in the wildly extra pasta in wheels of cheese, towering meringue pies, and tiramisus more of largesse than finesse that has made this Shoreditch hotspot so irresistibly popular.

54-56 Great Eastern St, Shoreditch
London EC2A 3QR, UK

6. Black Axe Mangal

156 Canonbury Rd, Highbury, London N1 2UP, UK

Black Axe Mangal does “boozy weekday lunches” and weekend parties, so it’s the perfect place to hire if in search of a little less traditional festive feast. A new set menu structure following reopening has left its raucous precision undimmed, with smoked spiced duck with quince; a baked Tunworth cheese, Lyonnaise onions, and white truffle flatbread; beef and bone marrow; and a by-now institutional deep-fried mince pie clocking in at £49.99 apiece.

156 Canonbury Rd, Highbury
London N1 2UP, UK

7. Forza Wine

The rooftop, 133 Rye Ln, Peckham, London SE15 4ST, UK

A rooftop bar might sound like an unlikely place for a December event, but given a heated terrace and the fact that inside space exists, Peckham’s Italian darling’s combination of just-one-more snacks, smart cocktails, and irreverently welcoming vibe makes it just the ticket for a wintry night out.

The rooftop, 133 Rye Ln, Peckham
London SE15 4ST, UK

8. Sabor

35-37 Heddon St, Mayfair, London W1B 4BR, UK

Sabor has a counter and a tapas bar, but the Christmas feasting should happen at the Asador, with whole suckling pig, prawn croquetas, Galician octopus, and more on offer for groups of four or more. Some tapas downstairs to kick things off wouldn’t hurt either.

35-37 Heddon St, Mayfair
London W1B 4BR, UK

9. Holborn Dining Room

252 High Holborn, Holborn, London WC1V 7EN, UK

Groups of 10 and above can go trad with a side of exquisite pastry at Holborn Dining Room, with turkey, cured salmon, and clementines — well, mandarins — represented across a hearty feasting menu. That’s the £70 affair; a £90pp menu brings in the big guns, with lobster thermidor tart, pate en croûte, and an onion squash with spelt risotto and Spenwood cheese. Yes, it’s a pastry premium, but with Calum Franklin on the dough, it’s one worth paying.

252 High Holborn, Holborn
London WC1V 7EN, UK

10. The Camberwell Arms

65 Camberwell Church St, Camberwell, London SE5 8TR, UK

Groups of four and above can enjoy the plentiful, family style affair at this south London institution, with crispy sprouts and pickled onions a noble starter and an overnight osso bucco the grandstand main. As with this pub’s esteemed Sunday roasts, it’s the sides — celeriac dauphinoise; roast potatoes with herbs and garlic — that look set to steal the show.

65 Camberwell Church St, Camberwell
London SE5 8TR, UK

11. OMBRA Bar & Restaurant

1 Vyner St, Cambridge Heath, London E2 9DG, UK

Mitshel Ibrahim’s Ombra excels when measuring for generosity as much as quality, with its restless menu very much suited to sharing in the winter. A shared quintet of starters includes duck and mandarin terrine; the pneumatic gnocco fritto here with wild boar mortadella and winter truffle; and Jerusalem artichokes with chestnut, while the main event is either trout with radicchio, potatoes, and cime di rapa or a luxurious slow-cooked egg with potato and porcini. Tiramisu is the obvious supplement dessert to a mandarin pannacotta.

1 Vyner St, Cambridge Heath
London E2 9DG, UK

12. 40 Maltby Street

40 Maltby St, London SE1 3PA, UK

This Bermondsey wonder always runs a Christmas menu in the few days before the big one, and it’s always pretty secretive about what is actually on it. With no reservations and, it is guaranteed, a crowd of disciples, this is the reliable winter wildcard for smaller groups. Diners might not know exactly what dishes to expect, but carefully cooked vegetables, peerless pastry, and warming, agreeable desserts will definitely be on offer.

40 Maltby St
London SE1 3PA, UK

13. Honey & Co. Bloomsbury

54 Lamb's Conduit St, London WC1N 3LW, UK

Sarit Packer and Itamar Srulovich have always favoured communal feasting and sharing as the best way to experience their impeccable mezze, grills, and pastry work, so a Christmas party at Honey & Co is always going to be a winner. A winter menu features poached quince with curd cheese, cinnamon falafel, and pot-roasted beef with pumpkin, and these dishes are likely to be at the heart of a Christmas menu served on platters to share.

54 Lamb's Conduit St
London WC1N 3LW, UK

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