We’ve rounded up some of London’s best al fresco dining areas for a weekend of fabulous food and frivolity in the sunshine
Words Helen Brown
As al fresco fever sweeps the city, we’ve rounded up the best of London’s outdoor dining areas, guuaranteed to whisk you away to the sunny shores of the Mediterranean. Here are a few of our favourites…
The Ivy Chelsea Garden
Located on the desirable King’s Road, The Ivy Chelsea Garden brings sophisticated all-day dining to the heart of Chelsea. This outpost comes complete with an abundance of pots and plants, as well as a pergola and water feature.
The Grain Store opens its terrace for the warmer months so that diners can enjoy the bustling atmosphere of Granary Square. On hot days this sun trap is a magnet for city slickers looking for the ultimate in alfresco dining, with wine and prosecco on tap.
Both Dishoom Shoreditch and Carnaby have verandahs with retractable roofs for summer. The terrace at Dishoom Shoreditch evokes the faded elegance of Bombay’s old verandas.
Coppa Club is a place for eating, drinking, meeting and unwinding. The central brass bar is open on all sides and is a bustling hub for post-work socialising. Outside, there’s a large, south-facing terrace that catches the sun all day. The seating is designed to make the most of the view over the river. Dine on European small plates and snacks, grilled mains, sourdough pizzas and salads.
Head to Little Venice for an authentic taste of the Mediterranean. The Summerhouse is a bright, unfussy restaurant with a tantalising seafood-heavy menu. It affords canal-side seating, perfect for whiling away summer weekends watching the boats float by.
The Lido Café
The Lido Cafe is one of south east London’s best-kept secrets. This eatery is tucked away in Brockwell Park not far from Brixton and offers breakfasts, brunches and lunches throughout the week, as well as summer al fresco dining in the evening. The pool is pretty chilly but a welcome treat in the heights of a London heatwave.
Barrafina Drury Lane
This Barrafina site serves its signature tapas from a large open terrace. Order the salt cod with sofrito and a great glass of wine and you’ll be whisked away to the sunny shores of Spain. Fingers crossed for the Spanish sunshine.
Named after the eponymous character created by Virginia Woolf, Dalloway Terrace is a quintessentially English eatery. It’s a beautiful indoor-outdoor space set in the heart of Bloomsbury, London’s literary centre. Dalloway Terrace boasts a light, elegant and beautiful alfresco area with a daily-changing menu. This summer they’ve launched the Dalloway Summer Estate in partnership with Ramsbury, maker of single-estate spirits Ramsbury Gin & Vodka.
Summer is bustling over at Pitch Stratford. The venue features a range of cinema screenings, music events and supper-clubs throughout the summer. Inspired by bright Moroccan themes, the space has had a revamp. Street-food vendors include Pakistani cuisine whilst a drinks menu has been curated by The Umbrella Project.