clock menu more-arrow no yes
Mince pie from Lyle’s
Lyle’s beef-mince mince pie
Lyle’s [Official Photo]

London’s Most Festive Mince Pies

Some rich and boozy, some light and tangy, some featuring actual mince

View as Map
Lyle’s beef-mince mince pie
| Lyle’s [Official Photo]

Mince pies are Marmitey (not literally; although, come to think of it...), adored and despised in equal measure. But 2020’s pies are available in so many guises — brothy and beefy versus citrus-aromatic, suet versus almond meal, macro versus micro — that even the ambivalent can find a room that appeals at the inn. As ever, the trend is away from domestic goddess twee towards savoury, suety, and distinctly medieval. Here’s where to find them.

Read More
Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Ottolenghi Notting Hill

Copy Link
63 Ledbury Rd, Notting Hill
London W11 2AD, UK

If there is such thing as a sleeper-hit mince pie, this might be it, with a booze-soaked fruit filling that hangs together rather than glooping, and exceptionally friable pastry.

2. Bread By Bike

Copy Link
30 Brecknock Rd, Kentish Town
London N7 0DD, UK

The only ancestral mince pies in the city. Bread by Bike’s 2020 mince pies are filled with a mincemeat fed by that of 2019, which adds a seriously adult depth of flavour to an already brandy-soaked interior. Sweet pastry doesn’t always work, but it’s exactly what this filling needs — a hit.

3. Jacob the Angel

Copy Link
16A Neal's Yard
London WC2H 9DP, UK

Baked fresh every day throughout the festive season, this pocket-sized Covent Garden bakery’s mince pies punch well above their weight. A thin yet buttery crust gives way to a rich, almost jammy apple and caraway mincemeat filling. Available to eat in or to takeaway.

4. Fortitude Bakehouse

Copy Link
35 Colonnade, Bloomsbury
London WC1N 1JA, UK

Long-fermented mincemeat pies from the Bloomsbury-based sourdough cake crew. Suet-free mince has an adult, sour-sharp acidity and tang, and is shot through with long tendrils of bright zest. Available to order in bulk.

5. The Quality Chop House

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

Pies topped with a candied wheel of orange and a layer of almond frangipane, which is an inspired textural twist. These are citrusy, aromatic, and probably even release little clouds of essential oils on their way up from the oven downstairs. A softer set on the mincemeat here, all limpid, barely-suspended fruit and boozy liquor. A very refined and luscious little pie — available in multiples to order, too.

6. St John Restaurant

Copy Link
St John Restaurant, 26 St John St
London EC1M 4AY, UK

Available across all their sites, but really to be paired with a glass of something spirited to cut through their weight. Marc say, or Vieille Prune. Size of a pork pie, more crust than crumb, the shortcrust pastry fired to an almost biscuit texture and the filling as staunch as a plum pudding — or as thick as tar, depending on the eater’s view. A pie to work or sleep on.

7. Flor

Copy Link
1 Bedale St
London SE1 9AL, UK

Anna Higham’s rightly celebrated mince (as in, real mince) pie may now be without its creator, but it lives on in the custody of Flor’s bakers in Borough Market. It’s dense with beef from butcher Philip Warren, shredded to a treacly, booze-bound paste, and there’s also a vegetarian version made with quince. Pastry is a friable, demerara-studded shell that caves in to fatty shards. Take away from Borough Market, Wednesday — Saturday.

8. Esters

Copy Link
55 Kynaston Rd, Stoke Newington
London N16 0EB, UK

Rightly famed for London’s best cookie, Esters is also a contender for the best mince pie. Playing rough-hewn off against lacy on the pastry front, these interim-sized pies will leave behind a dusting of pastry shrapnel in just the manner a good croissant would aspire to. A saltier, rather than sweeter number, which is a good thing, and featuring plump fruit-flecked aged mince. Small numbers daily, with an appearance on the counter around 9 a.m.

9. 40 Maltby St

Copy Link
40 Maltby St
London SE1 3PA, UK

Another mince pie taking its name seriously: yes, more meat. Beefy, brothy mincemeat with an edge feral tang; a deep bowl of textbook pastry that’s both fatty and frugal; a moat of yellow jersey cream. Savoury and sublime.

10. Violet

Copy Link
47 Wilton Way
London E8 3ED, UK

Diminutive mouthfuls of almond-rich pastry under a snowdrift of confectioners sugar, which gives these a softer, biscuit-like texture. More about the pastry than the filling at this size, so one for the mincemeat agnostics out there.

11. Tetote Factory

Copy Link
12 S Ealing Rd, Ealing
London W5 4QA, UK

This year’s chaotic lawful mince pie comes from Ealing bakery Tetote Factory, which follows in the footsteps of its tomato and garlic roll (pizza) and barbecue chicken bun (fried chicken) by invoking just enough of the festive tradition to permit otherwise laughing in its face. A brioche casing is filled from bottom to top with custard cream, mincemeat, and Bramley apple, before being topped with a dainty pastry star dusted with icing sugar. The Christmas tribute hiding the chaos within.

12. The Dusty Knuckle Bakery

Copy Link
Abbot St, Dalston
London E8 3DP, UK

One of the most consistent pies in the city, this Dalston bakery packs its pastry lids to the rafters with dark, sticky mincemeat, to the point that the hefty dusting of icing sugar is almost a necessary corrective to the maturity of the fruit.

1. Ottolenghi Notting Hill

63 Ledbury Rd, Notting Hill, London W11 2AD, UK

If there is such thing as a sleeper-hit mince pie, this might be it, with a booze-soaked fruit filling that hangs together rather than glooping, and exceptionally friable pastry.

63 Ledbury Rd, Notting Hill
London W11 2AD, UK

2. Bread By Bike

30 Brecknock Rd, Kentish Town, London N7 0DD, UK

The only ancestral mince pies in the city. Bread by Bike’s 2020 mince pies are filled with a mincemeat fed by that of 2019, which adds a seriously adult depth of flavour to an already brandy-soaked interior. Sweet pastry doesn’t always work, but it’s exactly what this filling needs — a hit.

30 Brecknock Rd, Kentish Town
London N7 0DD, UK

3. Jacob the Angel

16A Neal's Yard, London WC2H 9DP, UK

Baked fresh every day throughout the festive season, this pocket-sized Covent Garden bakery’s mince pies punch well above their weight. A thin yet buttery crust gives way to a rich, almost jammy apple and caraway mincemeat filling. Available to eat in or to takeaway.

16A Neal's Yard
London WC2H 9DP, UK

4. Fortitude Bakehouse

35 Colonnade, Bloomsbury, London WC1N 1JA, UK

Long-fermented mincemeat pies from the Bloomsbury-based sourdough cake crew. Suet-free mince has an adult, sour-sharp acidity and tang, and is shot through with long tendrils of bright zest. Available to order in bulk.

35 Colonnade, Bloomsbury
London WC1N 1JA, UK

5. The Quality Chop House

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

Pies topped with a candied wheel of orange and a layer of almond frangipane, which is an inspired textural twist. These are citrusy, aromatic, and probably even release little clouds of essential oils on their way up from the oven downstairs. A softer set on the mincemeat here, all limpid, barely-suspended fruit and boozy liquor. A very refined and luscious little pie — available in multiples to order, too.

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

6. St John Restaurant

St John Restaurant, 26 St John St, London EC1M 4AY, UK

Available across all their sites, but really to be paired with a glass of something spirited to cut through their weight. Marc say, or Vieille Prune. Size of a pork pie, more crust than crumb, the shortcrust pastry fired to an almost biscuit texture and the filling as staunch as a plum pudding — or as thick as tar, depending on the eater’s view. A pie to work or sleep on.

St John Restaurant, 26 St John St
London EC1M 4AY, UK

7. Flor

1 Bedale St, London SE1 9AL, UK

Anna Higham’s rightly celebrated mince (as in, real mince) pie may now be without its creator, but it lives on in the custody of Flor’s bakers in Borough Market. It’s dense with beef from butcher Philip Warren, shredded to a treacly, booze-bound paste, and there’s also a vegetarian version made with quince. Pastry is a friable, demerara-studded shell that caves in to fatty shards. Take away from Borough Market, Wednesday — Saturday.

1 Bedale St
London SE1 9AL, UK

8. Esters

55 Kynaston Rd, Stoke Newington, London N16 0EB, UK

Rightly famed for London’s best cookie, Esters is also a contender for the best mince pie. Playing rough-hewn off against lacy on the pastry front, these interim-sized pies will leave behind a dusting of pastry shrapnel in just the manner a good croissant would aspire to. A saltier, rather than sweeter number, which is a good thing, and featuring plump fruit-flecked aged mince. Small numbers daily, with an appearance on the counter around 9 a.m.

55 Kynaston Rd, Stoke Newington
London N16 0EB, UK

9. 40 Maltby St

40 Maltby St, London SE1 3PA, UK

Another mince pie taking its name seriously: yes, more meat. Beefy, brothy mincemeat with an edge feral tang; a deep bowl of textbook pastry that’s both fatty and frugal; a moat of yellow jersey cream. Savoury and sublime.

40 Maltby St
London SE1 3PA, UK

10. Violet

47 Wilton Way, London E8 3ED, UK

Diminutive mouthfuls of almond-rich pastry under a snowdrift of confectioners sugar, which gives these a softer, biscuit-like texture. More about the pastry than the filling at this size, so one for the mincemeat agnostics out there.

47 Wilton Way
London E8 3ED, UK

11. Tetote Factory

12 S Ealing Rd, Ealing, London W5 4QA, UK

This year’s chaotic lawful mince pie comes from Ealing bakery Tetote Factory, which follows in the footsteps of its tomato and garlic roll (pizza) and barbecue chicken bun (fried chicken) by invoking just enough of the festive tradition to permit otherwise laughing in its face. A brioche casing is filled from bottom to top with custard cream, mincemeat, and Bramley apple, before being topped with a dainty pastry star dusted with icing sugar. The Christmas tribute hiding the chaos within.

12 S Ealing Rd, Ealing
London W5 4QA, UK

12. The Dusty Knuckle Bakery

Abbot St, Dalston, London E8 3DP, UK

One of the most consistent pies in the city, this Dalston bakery packs its pastry lids to the rafters with dark, sticky mincemeat, to the point that the hefty dusting of icing sugar is almost a necessary corrective to the maturity of the fruit.

Abbot St, Dalston
London E8 3DP, UK

Related Maps