Comprising the area between Smithfield and Exmouth markets, there's an awful lot of promise tucked away in these back streets. But it's fairly easy to wander around the Farringdon area looking for that place that's a cut above the rest. But don't worry - here's where to find the best restaurants in Clerkenwell...
Mark Jarvis's modern British fine dining restaurant in the heart of Farringdon serves up seasonal, inventive food from a pared back dining room. It, deservedly, won critic plaudits from the get go.
This is an offshoot of Josh Katz's Berber & Q, and is something of a cut-down version of the main restaurant. Here you can find a combination of mezze, hummus and plenty from the grill - including the lamb shawarme of course - as well as rotisserie chicken. And make sure to hang around for their desserts.
Bleeding Heart is a London institution. Come here for classic French food with a modern touch and a vast amount of wine supplied by their wine cellar. Choose between the bistro or the tavern - and the private dining spaces are particularly atmospheric.
This was street traders-turned restaurateurs Breddos first restaurant. It serves up excellent tacos, tostadas, tortilla-based Mexican pizza tlayudas and more. Don't forget to give their mezcal list a try as well.
This is the original Caravan, where they built a reputation of creating some of the finest brunches in town. Having their own coffee roastery means the coffee are second to none.
This neighbourhood cafe in Clerkenwell is blessed with a hidden courtyard terrace which is a good-to-know alfresco option in this area. As for the food, they serve up ethically-sourced organic produce taking inspiration from both European and Californian cafes and a small regularly changing menu.
This Clerkenwell restaurant is from the team behind Michelin-starred and World's 50 Best restaurant The Clove Club. An Italian restaurant using British produce it's split between a more casual cafe at the front and more formal dining in the restaurant at the back.
Macellaio RC have a few sites across London where the main event is the steak, and you'll see plenty of this hanging in the restaurant. It's all Italian-style steak from a female Fassona breed. There is some pasta available too - but you'll really need to be trying as much from the grill as possible to do the place justice.
Moro has long been one of London foodie's favourite restaurants - think of this as Sam and Sam Clark's sibling tapas bar to the original - serving up super small plates with ice-cold glasses of fino.
Back in 1997 when Moro first opened, Exmouth Market was still a scruffy Clerkenwell street and this restaurant with its implausibly good looking bar staff and open kitchen was the second most exciting thing to happen to the area food-wise since The Eagle threw open its doors. Run by the marvellously-monikered Sam and Sam Clark, it's still turning out great food in a room that's packed every day of the week.
Want to be looked after to within an inch of your life? Well, this is the restaurant you come to. Properly old-school French, Otto's has carved out a niche for itself because of a serious bit of kit called the duck press and its fans are legion.
The Quality Chop House, which has been open since 1869, at one point looked in danger of disappearing forever before it was lovingly restored by Will Lander and Josie Stead. Now it's both a restaurant and wine bar featuring menus that are created in the morning based on what's been delivered. Come for the very best of British cooking, or just as easily pop in for charcuterie or wine or to pick something up from the adjoining butcher and deli.
This restaurant taking old over an old Grade II courthouse in Clerkenwell sees the return of Florence Knight to the London restaurant scene, with a menu that is a mix of British, French and Italian cooking. As befitting its protected status, it's also in one of the most beautiful dining rooms in London and it's also a wine bar and art gallery space.
Fergus Henderson's renowned restaurant, which just turned 25, is many critics' favourite in London. Its focus on "nose to tail" eating makes it a must visit for anyone looking for the very best in modern British cooking.
The tiny Sushi Tetsu is both one of the best sushi restaurants in town and also one of the hardest to get into. With only half a dozen seats inside, each item served to you will be almost a work of art. This may well ruin other sushi restaurants for you...
The Eagle in Clerkenwell is often credited as the first modern gastropub - with restaurant-quality food being served inside a pub. Many years down the line, it's still a reliable spot for a good meal, serving up a seasonal menu in a faintly ramshackle pub. The steak sandwiches are some of the best in town.
In a quiet part of Clerkenwell, The Green comes from the same people who also run The Culpeper in Shoreditch. Either take it easy in the pub downstairs or head up to the first floor restaurant and you'll find the pub serving modern British food from an ever changing menu. Also look out for a Sunday lunch where they concentrate on Beef Wellington and one key roast dish.
Russell Norman, the man behind Polpo, is back with this Farringdon restaurants (where Hix used to be). It takes its influences primarily from Northern Italy with a particular focus on Florence. So you'll find Italian snacks and pasta alongside huge T-Bone steaks. It's also part-bar, with an extensive list of cocktail classics, so will be very handy if you're looking for a decent bar in the area.
The best of Clerkenwell and Farringdon
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