Once a gastronomic punchline, London is now among the world’s most exciting and adventurous cities to eat out in, from food trucks to fine dining. Where else could you find octopus French toast, muntjac biryani or Jerusalem-inspired pork belly all within a couple of postcodes? Here Esquire celebrates the chefs and restaurateurs whose recent openings are helping to keep the british capital at the forefront of food.More
Founder Martin Morales
You may not be familiar with the cuisine of the Andes. Luckily, chef-proprietor Martin Morales is on a mission to acquaint London diners with the food of his native Peru. He opened Ceviche in Soho in 2012 to showcase coastal offerings, followed by Andina in Shoreditch in December last year, inspired by the food parcels he was sent as a kid by his Andean grandmother (“andina” means “lady from the Andes”). Eat and learn.
"Coming from the backgrounds I have [Morales previously worked for Apple and Disney], I can see how we can be innovative. The restaurant world is an industry that hasn’t had much innovation at all. I’m really excited about it."
1 Redchurch Street, London E2 .andinalondon.com
Executive Chef Nuno Mendes
If there’s a London restaurant to be seen in right now, it’s Chiltern Firehouse in Marylebone, which opened in February this year. Admittedly, its proprietor, André Balazs, who owns the Standard hotel group and Hollywood’s Chateau Marmont, has something of a track record, but after recruiting charismatic chef Nuno Mendes, formerly of Viajante, it has attracted a moths-to-a-flame flow of celebrity diners including Lily Allen, Kate Moss and David Cameron (you can’t win ’em all).
"When André and I first met, we both felt there was nothing in London like those big, buzzy, social-scene restaurants in New York. We wanted to bring that sort of American brasserie experience here but also really zhush up the food."
1 Chiltern Street, Loondon, W1U 7PA. chilternfirehouse.com