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Zetter Townshouse

Where to Eat and Drink on Christmas Day in London

Save on the washing up and maybe knock back some eggnog, too

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A London Christmas is a miraculous thing. It covers, even encourages, all manner of sins including the mandatory sloth and gluttony (as well as inciting the avarice that Santa might view somewhat less favourably). Come Christmas Day, the city offers an array of dining options to entice even the most Grinch-like relatives off the sofa, as long as the right booking is made. So whether it’s wanton luxury, a long-savoured escape from roast poultry, or a curry that will fill loved ones’ hearts with festive bliss, it’s all here — just don’t leave it till the last minute.

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The Zetter Townhouse Clerkenwell

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For anyone that won’t manage to escape home — or other — dining arrangements, but wants a suitably festive haven to escape to post-feasts, or to have a preprandial cocktail at, the Zetter will be open all day and serving up its famed Eggnogg (off menu, so just ask).

Holborn Dining Room

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Nokx Majozi’s legendary pies join the menu in Holborn Dining Room’s opulent central London setting, which makes good on the promise of Christmas cheer. An ingenious chicken, sage, and onion paté en croute is the starter highlight, while turkey is naturally the main event alongside a salmon en croute for the turkey agnostics. £195 per person, including snacks and an interstitial thermidor-glazed scallop, as it should be.

Tayyabs

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There’s no law that dictates Christmas Day dining. So if all one desires is to leave the house for a couple hours, without booking ahead, or any additional fuss, head over to cult stalwart Tayyabs for a class curry chosen off a menu that is exactly the same as it is every other day of the year. 

Bob Bob Ricard

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The ideal choice for smaller child-free parties — or pairs — that envisage Christmas as an excuse to guzzle distinctly adult treats, let’s say: caviar, oysters, steak tartare, followed by lobster macaroni cheese and truffle fries, all washed down with gallons of champagne (ordered by pressing a button, obviously).

La Dame de Pic London

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Anne-Sophie Pic’s glam Four Seasons site is serving up a swish five- or seven-course tasting menu. It includes a fragrant celeriac and lovage dish with caviar; a pasta course that features Pic’s signature dish of Berlingots, here with watercress, ivy oil, and black truffle; and a centrepiece of French chicken with sweet clover.

From above, sweet triangles plated around deep green sauce.
Berlingot “sweets” at La Dame de Pic
Cris Barnett

Min Jiang Restaurant

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If a slick, modern Chinese banquet is required to refresh the family’s Christmas spirit, nab a table atop the Royal Garden Hotel and gaze out over Hyde Park while sharing a feast that includes dishes like venison puffs and asparagus rolls in barbecue sauce, steamed crab with black truffle and XO sauce fried rice, and stir-fried garlic sprouts, shimeji and enoki mushrooms. Seeing as it’s Christmas, it’s probably worth going all out by pre-ordering a whole or half Beijing (Peking) duck, too.

The Pem

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Sally Abé’s newest restaurant is serving up a classic three courses in Westminster, for £150 a head. Guests can opt between smoked trout and crab mousse or a glazed ham for a starter, with beef Wellington or a truffled turkey breast. A Christmas pudding soufflé sounds a majestic culmination.

The Alexandra

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A special case: The Alexandra in Wimbledon offers a free Christmas dinner to anyone spending Christmas Day alone, under whatever circumstances. A place of spirit, refuge, and generosity.

The Zetter Townhouse Clerkenwell

For anyone that won’t manage to escape home — or other — dining arrangements, but wants a suitably festive haven to escape to post-feasts, or to have a preprandial cocktail at, the Zetter will be open all day and serving up its famed Eggnogg (off menu, so just ask).

Holborn Dining Room

Nokx Majozi’s legendary pies join the menu in Holborn Dining Room’s opulent central London setting, which makes good on the promise of Christmas cheer. An ingenious chicken, sage, and onion paté en croute is the starter highlight, while turkey is naturally the main event alongside a salmon en croute for the turkey agnostics. £195 per person, including snacks and an interstitial thermidor-glazed scallop, as it should be.

Tayyabs

There’s no law that dictates Christmas Day dining. So if all one desires is to leave the house for a couple hours, without booking ahead, or any additional fuss, head over to cult stalwart Tayyabs for a class curry chosen off a menu that is exactly the same as it is every other day of the year. 

Bob Bob Ricard

The ideal choice for smaller child-free parties — or pairs — that envisage Christmas as an excuse to guzzle distinctly adult treats, let’s say: caviar, oysters, steak tartare, followed by lobster macaroni cheese and truffle fries, all washed down with gallons of champagne (ordered by pressing a button, obviously).

La Dame de Pic London

Anne-Sophie Pic’s glam Four Seasons site is serving up a swish five- or seven-course tasting menu. It includes a fragrant celeriac and lovage dish with caviar; a pasta course that features Pic’s signature dish of Berlingots, here with watercress, ivy oil, and black truffle; and a centrepiece of French chicken with sweet clover.

From above, sweet triangles plated around deep green sauce.
Berlingot “sweets” at La Dame de Pic
Cris Barnett

Min Jiang Restaurant

If a slick, modern Chinese banquet is required to refresh the family’s Christmas spirit, nab a table atop the Royal Garden Hotel and gaze out over Hyde Park while sharing a feast that includes dishes like venison puffs and asparagus rolls in barbecue sauce, steamed crab with black truffle and XO sauce fried rice, and stir-fried garlic sprouts, shimeji and enoki mushrooms. Seeing as it’s Christmas, it’s probably worth going all out by pre-ordering a whole or half Beijing (Peking) duck, too.

The Pem

Sally Abé’s newest restaurant is serving up a classic three courses in Westminster, for £150 a head. Guests can opt between smoked trout and crab mousse or a glazed ham for a starter, with beef Wellington or a truffled turkey breast. A Christmas pudding soufflé sounds a majestic culmination.

The Alexandra

A special case: The Alexandra in Wimbledon offers a free Christmas dinner to anyone spending Christmas Day alone, under whatever circumstances. A place of spirit, refuge, and generosity.