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We are now officially in August and in between travels, I’ve been eating and drinking my way around London for the past couple of months. I wanted to share my pick of the bars and restaurants, so that you can use this last summer month to try out a new place, or refresh your experiences from an old favourite.

In no particular order, here are a few of the spots I frequented:

Sketch, Mayfair

 

Sketch had been idling in my bookmarks for ages. I think I first saw it in a blog post about the best places for afternoon tea in London, but I’ve only been there for drinks. It has a few different areas, but my favourite is The Glade (pictured above). It has a very Alice in Wonderland vibe to it, with its walls painted to resemble an enchanted forest and some rotating mirrors on the ceiling that reflect the lights around the room.

Why I love it: The cocktails are expensive, but exquisite. Particularly the one with Pistachio and Tanqueray.
Best feature: the funky toilet pods.

Aqua Nueva, Soho

 

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I can’t even remember how we came across Aqua Nueva, but we went there for after-work drinks once, and we have been back more times than I care to admit! It is a Spanish restaurant with a lovely terrace bar, serving great cocktails in a cool, contemporary setting.

Why I love it: it’s central, yet not too busy.
Best feature: the city views from the terrace.

FLAT IRON, Denmark Street

 

This is actually the smaller branch (there’s another one in Covent Garden). I frequent Flat Iron in Denmark street as it’s easier to get seats there, but do bear in mind that if you’re happy to wait a bit longer at the other one, they give out free salted caramel ice-cream at the end of your meal. The Denmark Street one only serves complimentary popcorn (which is not half bad actually).

Why I love it: it’s got a very cosy interior, reminiscent of a cool Brooklyn loft.
Best feature: they make a mean steak (also try the creamed spinach side)!

ROKA

 

I am obsessed with Japanese food, and I can have it basically every day. My all time favourite is Tombo in South Kensington (read the post about it here) but I was recently introduced to the gem that is ROKA. I went to the one in Aldwych before a ballet performance in the Royal Opera House, and it was one of Β the most delightful meals I’ve had in a long time! The flavours were very intriguing, and the deserts were just sublime. The desert on the top picture was a creme-brule with sesame ice-cream, raspberries and matcha macaroons, and the one in the bottom picture is their signature dark chocolate and green tea pudding.

Why I love it: the varied menu and the awesome deserts definitely help!
Best feature: the open kitchen bar.

House of Peroni

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This is actually a temporary pop-up by House of Peroni – they’ve created a lovely summer venue out on the terrace of Somerset House. It’s only going to be there until the end of September, so make the most of it while it lasts!

Why I love it: the very Italian, al-fresco vibe.
Best feature:Β view of the Thames.

Canary Wharf + Zizzi

 

One of my closest friends in London lives in Southeast, and sometimes it’s easier to just go out in Canary Wharf. It’s great for shopping (none of the craziness of central!), and it has a few really nice restaurants and bars in the area. Zizzi might sound a little boring as it’s a chain, but actually their summer menu is quite good!

Why I love it: relaxed and less crowded.
Best feature: again, the view of the Thames, but with a lot more greenery thrown in.

Regent’s Park + Camden Lock Market

 

Photo credit: hannatalks

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Camden Lock is definitely one of my all-time favourites for eating out! A nice walk in the park followed by some killer Oli Baba’s halloumi fries drizzled with pomegranate seeds and a minty yoghurt sauce from the market. Top it all off with a chocolate honeycomb ice-cream from Chin Chin Labs and call it the perfect day.

I get excited by funky ice-cream combinations, so I should probably write a post about the best ice-cream parlours in London… Stay tuned!

What have you been up to this summer? Let me know your thoughts and any recommendations in the comments!

Thanks for reading,

xx Niya

 

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Out and about, London

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