Located in a prime spot right next to London’s Old City, along the easternmost border of the West End, Covent Garden – or WC2 to the locals – is far from the public facility its nickname implies. After working up an appetite browsing amongst one of several open-air markets, or taking in a street performance in Covent Garden Square, visitors have a huge range of high quality eateries to choose from. Prominent among places to eat in Covent Garden are over 60 pubs and bars, many of which are located near the shopping area of the Old Market.
Some of the best restaurants in Covent Garden are to be found in the famous Opera Quarter, doubtless a hot place to visit when seeking world-class dining or entertainment. Some of London’s most ancient pubs are in the Opera Quarter, as well as award-winning specialist food emporia. It has been singled out as a place to eat in London – with good reason – not only do Covent Garden restaurants offer top quality food within walking distance of some of the best theatres in the world, but they all offer special pre- and post-theatre menus.
Covent Garden is a great place to come for breakfast, award-winning coffee, sweets and ice cream. And, don't forget, shopping. Located at the convergence of seven streets, with a huge number of shops, restaurants and theatres packed into its modest space, the village of Seven Dials is a mecca for the adventurous (and cashed-up) traveller. Alongside exclusive boutiques and genteel British brands, shoppers will find cutting edge and modern London eateries, from artisan pizza to new-concept Japanese. On-trend is the rule when it comes to these Covent Garden restaurants.
Surrounded by plush theatres, galleries and luxury hotels, a strong concentration of some of the best Covent Garden restaurants can be found along the handful of blocks that stretch the length Catherine Street. Take a relaxed stroll before or after catching a show, follow your nose (don’t forget your wallet), and take your pick from one of many four- and five-star (including prestigiously Michelin-starred), award-winning restaurant dining rooms. It’s a little quarter but it’s a high-class answer to the question, ‘where to eat in Covent Garden?’
Seeking authentic London pub experiences? Many restaurants in Covent Garden are in fact officially listed heritage pubs with historical significance. Since the 1970s, CAMRA (Campaign for Real Ale) has been lobbying to preserve and protect traditional English pubs and the ales they serve. CAMRA includes several Covent Garden pubs in its national inventory of protected establishments. Whether it’s a ploughman’s lunch under the low ceilings of one of London’s oldest dives, or share plates and designer draughts that you’re after, Covent Garden has a watering hole warm your cockles.
A night out in Covent Garden is often centred on pre-theatre eating besides theatre itself, and Covent Garden restaurants have you covered. No matter what your tastes or price range, most restaurants in Covent Garden will offer a pre-theatre menu which features a set course at a special price. They pump out these quick meals so those rushing to make curtain-up can still eat at a somewhat civilised pace and with minimal menu-perusal time. Many restaurants will feature share plates and tapas to minimise preparation times and encourage large theatre-going parties.
You step out onto the sidewalk into the fresh air, after just having seen an edgy, independent play or maybe a star-studded opera at the Royal Opera House. Your ears are all Wagnered out. It’s been hours since you ate those pre-show tapas, and the intermission drinks have left you more than a little peckish. You’re ready for more action, but hunger calls – time for some serious post-play snacks. Take your pick. You are at a food and theatre epicentre, so nearly all restaurants in Covent Garden will feature a special post-theatre menu.
Discussion of where to eat in Covent Garden is incomplete without mentioning its markets and squares. Shopping’s hungry work. Between visits to Seven Dials’ boutiques or St Martins Courtyard’s stores, pop into a brasserie for some French fare, grab sushi, an espresso, something sweet to keep you going until the next stop. Craving fish and chips for axle grease? At Quandoo we know you can't get enough – you can find them here, too. Whatever your tastes, there are restaurants in Covent Garden that will fuel your fire.