You know those days when you’re starving but you have literally no idea what you want to eat? Us too. Sometimes the best way to go is pick a cuisine and whittle it down from there. And the continent of Asia is a great place to start. Guaranteed to fill your hunger, Asian food is wide and varied, with something to suit every taste. So if you’re looking for Asian restaurants in London, but have no idea where to start, let us give some reccos.
Hare & Tortoise Bloomsbury
Sounding more like the kinda pub that has ales on tap and serves a great Sunday roast, Hare and Tortoise is actually one of the best places in London to grab some Japanese grub. Known for their great quality, fresh sushi, they also do a fine line in ramen, salads, and donburi (meat, fish, or vegetables simmered and served over rice.) There are a few Hare & Tortoises around London so if the Japanese-urge comes over you, you’ll know you’re never far from satisfaction.
A luvvie of the London Asian restaurant scene for a few years, Smoking Goat serves up dishes inspired by late-night Bangkok. Obviously, they have a small plates menu where you can choose all your dishes from, but there’s also a decent selection of main courses for people who don’t like to share. (We all have a Joey Trebianni in our group.) Our favourite dishes include the barbecue goat shoulder massaman curry, while the stir fried Cornish igreens and soy pair well with every dish on the menu. They also have an incredible sister restaurant, Kiln, which you can read about here.
With beautiful white tables, stripped back walls, and minimal decoration, this place feels like the kind of spot that is all about the food. And it is. This Vietnamese restaurant is part of the Vietnamese Kitchen group, which has three restaurants across London. Using the best quality ingredients, they serve up authentic Vietnamese cuisine, in the heart of the UK. Bring a crowd of pals and try out their sharing mains including claypot mekong catfish and slow braised lamb neck curry, or be greedy and get your own with Saigon Hawker rice, or Hanoi bbq pork.
Originating in a shipping container (as all cool Asian restaurants in London seem to do), Kricket now has three venues across the city. Their ethos is fresh, modern Indian food in a chilled out atmosphere, and it’s fair to say they’ve achieved that. There are no oily, over-spiced dishes here. Instead guests are treated to plates like butternut squash with fresh paneer, hazelnut crumb, and puffed rice, or torched mackerel with gooseberry chutney kasundi mustard (mustard made with fermented seeds and spices), and almonds. If you’re going with a group you can also book the downstairs communal table that comes with its own cocktail bar.
A restaurant with no trained chefs you say? That might normally strike fear into the hearts of Asian restaurants hunters, but trust us on this one. Founder Asma started holding supper clubs at home with fellow housewives, and the restaurant grew from there. The all-women team learned how to cook from their grandmothers or mothers, with Asma on hand to impart wisdom. Situated in the uber-cool Kingley Court, this place serves up feasts like prawn malaikari; spiced tiger prawns cooked in coconut milk, or kalonji paneer; Indian cheese in a creamy gravy, with fresh chillies and spiced nigella seeds. Go check it out. You’ll leave smiling.
Really can’t decide what you want? Bintang is your answer. Combining delicacies from Malaysia, China, Indonesia, Japan, Vietnam, and the Philippines, this place gives all of the cuisines without compromising on flavour. In an added plus, these guys do a happy hour where you can choose dishes like chicken satay, tom yum soup, katsu curry, and pad thai, at just £10 for two courses. Best of all, they do BYOB, making them the perfect spot if you’re looking for Asian restaurants in London.