Choosing the right restaurant for a special occasion isn’t easy at the best of times but, come Valentine’s Day, the pressure tends to be feel higher than ever.
Thankfully, I’ve eaten my way around the city’s very best (and worst) restaurants, to make that decision a little bit easier.
Whether you’re interested in Asian cusine, Nordic cuisine, or something in between, here is a helpful guide to the best luxury date nights in London for Valentine’s Day 2023.
This gorgeous townhouse-turned-elevated Indian restaurant is one of the city’s very best hidden gems. At any time of year. Chef Rohit Ghai’s contemporary twists on traditional classics (like the buttery-soft tikka masala) earned it the title of Restaurant of The Year in 2022, and they’re offering a special six-course menu for Valentine’s Day at £75pp, featuring a showstopping Seabass Moilee (pan-seared with curry leaf, coconut, and served with Tadka Dal). The vegetarian menu is packed with incredible options, too, including Gooseberry Morels (with white turmeric and papad).
10 Lincoln St, London, SW3 2TS
Studio Frantzén, Harrods
If you’re looking for luxury, you have to look towards Harrods. Particularly Studio Frantzén. Launched just two months ago, the restaurant is six Michelin-starred chef Björn Frantzén’s first entrance into the UK, offering neo-Nordic dining at its best. Don’t miss the superbly-curated selection of oysters, caviar and crudites or incredible raw starters (like the tuna and red deer tartare, served with Kalix verdace roe, white kombu, wasabi-infused cultured cream, fermented Mirabelle plum, and warm ginger butter).
Fifth Floor, 87-135 Brompton Road, London, SW1X 7XL
Perched high in the sky on the 37 and 38th floor of Novotel London Canary Wharf, Bokan serves epic views and even more epic food. I’d suggest kicking things off with a cocktail on the rooftop terrace before settling in downstairs to enjoy Bokan’s seven-course tasting menu (featuring sweetheart cabbage, sauerkraut, and burnt mayo; ox cheek, ras el hanout, lemon condiment; short ribs, parsnip, shitake mushroom, and more). Don’t worry—the views are 360 degrees down there, too.
Floor 37-39, 40 Marsh Wall, London, E14 9TP
Kerridge’s Bar and Grill
The great Tom Kerridge’s only London restaurant has something unique to offer couples who really love their food in the form of rotisserie sharing menus. All you have to do is choose between the 1.2kg dry-aged Tomahawk steak, slow-reared chicken stuffed with truffles, or 1kg whole Dover Sole. Each of the succulent options is cooked to perfection on the restaurant’s open theatre rotisserie grill and served with an assortment of delectable sides and sauces. (Note: guests must pre-order 48 hours in advance at email@example.com.)
10 Northumberland Ave, London, WC2N 5AE
Aqua Restaurant Group’s latest opening, Shiro in the City, has just launched after massive success in Hong Kong—and they’ve brought their signature Crystal Sushi with them. Instead of a traditional seaweed wrap, these crystalline creations are topped with hand-crafted jellies—like the scallop and caviar option’s kimchi jelly—which pack intense flavour and balance the mirin, sake and soy perfectly. Throw some robata and sake-based cocktails in the mix, and you’ve got yourself a very luxurious date.
100 Liverpool St, Broadgate Circle, London, EC2M 2QS