El Pastor, Borough

Our favourite new restaurants

There are so many delicious restaurants to choose from in London that it’s hard to keep up with all the latest and greatest openings.  Here are our current favourites:

Sardine is a lovely restaurant specialising in Southern French cooking from chef Alex Jackson in association with Stevie Parle of The Dock Kitchen (whom he trained with).  It’s small, so booking is advised and the food is baked or wood-fired.  Dishes are generous, delicious and if you’re the sort of person who wants to eat cassoulet for breakfast (we have been known), then this is the place for you. 15 Micawber Street, N1 7TB

If you’re fans of The Palomar, you’re sure to love The Barbary.  Not only is it from the same owners, but some of the food is definitely reminiscent of their first opening with hits such as Baba Ganoush on offer again and, like The Palomar’s popular walk-in bar, you sit around an open kitchen on bar stools.  The food here though is from the former Barbary Coast (Morocco, Algeria, Libya and Tunisia) with highlights such as the wonderful Jerusalem bagel and lemon chickpeas.  The food is mouth-wateringly good and the service excellent. 16 Neal’s Yard, WC2H

We’ve quite a soft spot for The Hart Brothers and their brilliant tapas restaurant, Barrafina (not to mention Quo Vadis) so we were super curious to see their take on the tortilla. The name El Pastor is taken from the ‘al pastor’ taco that Sam Hart and friend Crispin Somerville (who also co-owns the restaurant) enjoyed when they ran a nightclub in Mexico City during the late 90s.  Like Barrafina, you can’t make a reservation but, trust us, you won’t mind queuing for the 24 hour marinated pork tacos or the roast squash quesadillas. 7a Stoney Street, Borough, SE1 9AA.

Former head chef at Pitt Cue, there isn’t much that Neil Rankin doesn’t know about grilling and barbecuing meat.  He’s certainly put that knowledge to good use at Temper, where you sit around a smokey open kitchen and see the cooks hard at work.  We particularly liked the aged cheeseburger taco and the Lincoln Red beef but whilst there are a few veggie options on the menu, this restaurant is definitely for the meat-minded. 25 Broadwick Street, W1F 0DF

Such was the success of the Indian pop-up restaurant Kricket, set in a tiny 20-seat shipping container in Brixton, that the two British owners have now opened up in Soho.  You’ll find the same tasty, dense Indian dishes (inspired from working in Mumbai) served tapas style as you sit around the bar – it’s primarily a walk-in restaurant, although you can make reservations for parties of 4 or more downstairs.  Our top picks?  The duck leg kathi roll and the butter garlic crab. 12 Denman Street, W1D 7HH


— Francesca
22nd February 2017