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London’s most interesting restaurants of 2018: Etles in Walthamstow
Etles’ Uyghur food is coming to Finchley Road this weekend
Andrew Leitch/Eater London

Where to Eat When Canvassing in Finchley and Golders Green

From Iranian and Jewish sandwiches to some of London’s very best Japanese and Chinese food

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Etles’ Uyghur food is coming to Finchley Road this weekend
| Andrew Leitch/Eater London

The bulk of Finchley and Golders Green used to be solidly blue, returning Margaret Thatcher majority after majority ever since she took up the seat in 1959. After the boundary changes in 1992 the seat has acted as a bellwether to judge the mood of the nation: Labour in 1997 and Conservative in 2010. In 2019, unusually, three parties have a chance of taking the seat, meaning canvassers are out in force. Luckily it also has some of the best food options of any constituency in London: from Iranian and Jewish sandwiches to some of London’s best Japanese and Chinese food.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Gokyuzu Restaurant Finchley

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1 Leisure Way, Finchley
London N12 0QZ, UK

Lads it’s Gokyuzu

2. Caspian Lounge

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427 High Rd, Finchley
London N12 0AP, UK

Another Tehrani sandwich shop called Caspian (the other is in Ealing), this takeaway specialises in Iranian pizza and subs. Skip the pizzas and stick to exceptional sandwiches full of delicious wobbly things like livers, tongue, beef salami, and brains.

3. Izakaya Japan

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356 Regents Park Rd, Finchley
London N3 2LJ, UK
020 8371 1652

Bar Mayfair, no area has such a concentration of Japanese restaurants as Finchley (which is where many of the community live). Izakaya is not an izakaya exactly but one of the best spots for sashimi, yakitori, and katsu kari. A good all rounder.

4. Atariya Foods Golders Green

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15-16 Monkville Ave
London NW11 0AL, UK

Maybe the strangest location of all the Atariyas, this outpost by the North Circular looks like a produce shop from the outside (and is), but it is also possible to sit down at the bar and eat good sushi at a discount price. 

5. The Salt Beef Bar

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2 Monkville Ave
London NW11 0AL, UK
020 8731 7375

A mix of Greek Cypriot owners and Ashkenazi Jewish traditions have kept this small cafe alive for the past couple decades, quietly serving some of the best salt beef in the city. Get a mix of salt beef and tongue, and don’t forget to order a latke on the side to untraditionally insert inside it. 

6. Balady

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750 Finchley Rd
London NW11 7TH, UK

Just about the best falafel in London, so herby the insides look like emeralds, with hot crusts that crack on teeth. Don’t miss the sabich as hefty as cannon balls, fluffy pitta soaking up freshly fried aubergine, hard boiled eggs, hummus, chilli sauce, mango pickle, and chips. Vegetarian only, except for when the Sabbo boys cook their Moroccan grandmothers fish recipes on weekends.

7. Hummus Bar

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82 Golders Green Rd, Golders Green
London NW11 8LN, UK

One of the new wave kosher restaurants, like the new wave halal cafes in other parts of London Hummus Bar repackages the traditional into a fun, bright space, and genre-hopping menu that appeals to the whole family. Choose between sandwiches, burgers, baos, small plates, big plates and, of course hummus. 

8. Cafe Japan

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626 Finchley Rd, Golders Green
London NW11 7RR, UK

Recently taken over by fish wholesaler Atariya, Cafe Japan is now an open secret among London’s sushi obsessives as one of the best in the game (Andy Hayler even giving it that coveted 14/20 rating). Try to sit at the counter and get omakase for a parade of thoughtfully prepared sushi of the chef’s choosing.

9. Sun of China

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28 N End Rd, Golders Green
London NW11 7PT, UK

In the former Local Friends location, Sun of China is carrying on the Golders Green Hunan tradition, saving one side of its menu for slowly braised Chairman Mao’s pork with buttery fat, or dry wok dishes of brisket, tripe and tongue. 

10. Reindeer Cafe

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2, Wing Yip Business Centre, 395 Edgware Rd
London NW2 6LN, UK
020 8450 3330

Tucked inside the Cricklewood Wing Yip, Reindeer Cafe is a very Hong Kong daipaidong, of the type that is dying out in Chinatown. Many dishes exceed what is available in Soho, particularly the clarity of an excellent wonton soup, bobbing with fat prawn-sweet dumplings. It’s also a chance to grab some of the more unfashionable HK dishes, like cha chaan teng-style macaroni breakfasts with ham or sausage, or the simple textural pleasure of a bowl of curry soup filled with fish balls, pork rinds and turnip.

11. Etles Uyghur Restaurant

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424 Finchley Rd, Childs Hill
London NW2 2HY, UK
020 7431 5698

Yes, that Etles. Now taking over when Karvon Uyghur used to be, this second branch of the Walthamstow restaurant will open this Friday with a 20 percent discount on food. Those looking for a ganban chaomian fix or steaming large plates of da pan ji can now come straight to Finchley Road.

1. Gokyuzu Restaurant Finchley

1 Leisure Way, Finchley, London N12 0QZ, UK

Lads it’s Gokyuzu

1 Leisure Way, Finchley
London N12 0QZ, UK

2. Caspian Lounge

427 High Rd, Finchley, London N12 0AP, UK

Another Tehrani sandwich shop called Caspian (the other is in Ealing), this takeaway specialises in Iranian pizza and subs. Skip the pizzas and stick to exceptional sandwiches full of delicious wobbly things like livers, tongue, beef salami, and brains.

427 High Rd, Finchley
London N12 0AP, UK

3. Izakaya Japan

356 Regents Park Rd, Finchley, London N3 2LJ, UK

Bar Mayfair, no area has such a concentration of Japanese restaurants as Finchley (which is where many of the community live). Izakaya is not an izakaya exactly but one of the best spots for sashimi, yakitori, and katsu kari. A good all rounder.

356 Regents Park Rd, Finchley
London N3 2LJ, UK

4. Atariya Foods Golders Green

15-16 Monkville Ave, London NW11 0AL, UK

Maybe the strangest location of all the Atariyas, this outpost by the North Circular looks like a produce shop from the outside (and is), but it is also possible to sit down at the bar and eat good sushi at a discount price. 

15-16 Monkville Ave
London NW11 0AL, UK

5. The Salt Beef Bar

2 Monkville Ave, London NW11 0AL, UK

A mix of Greek Cypriot owners and Ashkenazi Jewish traditions have kept this small cafe alive for the past couple decades, quietly serving some of the best salt beef in the city. Get a mix of salt beef and tongue, and don’t forget to order a latke on the side to untraditionally insert inside it. 

2 Monkville Ave
London NW11 0AL, UK

6. Balady

750 Finchley Rd, London NW11 7TH, UK

Just about the best falafel in London, so herby the insides look like emeralds, with hot crusts that crack on teeth. Don’t miss the sabich as hefty as cannon balls, fluffy pitta soaking up freshly fried aubergine, hard boiled eggs, hummus, chilli sauce, mango pickle, and chips. Vegetarian only, except for when the Sabbo boys cook their Moroccan grandmothers fish recipes on weekends.

750 Finchley Rd
London NW11 7TH, UK

7. Hummus Bar

82 Golders Green Rd, Golders Green, London NW11 8LN, UK

One of the new wave kosher restaurants, like the new wave halal cafes in other parts of London Hummus Bar repackages the traditional into a fun, bright space, and genre-hopping menu that appeals to the whole family. Choose between sandwiches, burgers, baos, small plates, big plates and, of course hummus. 

82 Golders Green Rd, Golders Green
London NW11 8LN, UK

8. Cafe Japan

626 Finchley Rd, Golders Green, London NW11 7RR, UK

Recently taken over by fish wholesaler Atariya, Cafe Japan is now an open secret among London’s sushi obsessives as one of the best in the game (Andy Hayler even giving it that coveted 14/20 rating). Try to sit at the counter and get omakase for a parade of thoughtfully prepared sushi of the chef’s choosing.

626 Finchley Rd, Golders Green
London NW11 7RR, UK

9. Sun of China

28 N End Rd, Golders Green, London NW11 7PT, UK

In the former Local Friends location, Sun of China is carrying on the Golders Green Hunan tradition, saving one side of its menu for slowly braised Chairman Mao’s pork with buttery fat, or dry wok dishes of brisket, tripe and tongue. 

28 N End Rd, Golders Green
London NW11 7PT, UK

10. Reindeer Cafe

2, Wing Yip Business Centre, 395 Edgware Rd, London NW2 6LN, UK

Tucked inside the Cricklewood Wing Yip, Reindeer Cafe is a very Hong Kong daipaidong, of the type that is dying out in Chinatown. Many dishes exceed what is available in Soho, particularly the clarity of an excellent wonton soup, bobbing with fat prawn-sweet dumplings. It’s also a chance to grab some of the more unfashionable HK dishes, like cha chaan teng-style macaroni breakfasts with ham or sausage, or the simple textural pleasure of a bowl of curry soup filled with fish balls, pork rinds and turnip.

2, Wing Yip Business Centre, 395 Edgware Rd
London NW2 6LN, UK

11. Etles Uyghur Restaurant

424 Finchley Rd, Childs Hill, London NW2 2HY, UK

Yes, that Etles. Now taking over when Karvon Uyghur used to be, this second branch of the Walthamstow restaurant will open this Friday with a 20 percent discount on food. Those looking for a ganban chaomian fix or steaming large plates of da pan ji can now come straight to Finchley Road.

424 Finchley Rd, Childs Hill
London NW2 2HY, UK

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