London has seen a revolution in fast food dining in the past few years with gourmet burger and upmarket hotdog joints springing up at a dizzying pace. For tasty, affordable and junk-free food, you can’t beat these casual dining options:
If you fancy a bovine treat, London is bursting with gourmet burger bars. With three restaurants in Central London, MeatLiquor serves up a choice of eight spicy burgers, from Red Chilli Cheeseburger (£8.50) to Buffalo Chicken Burger (£8.50), all of which can be washed down with a heavenly mix of milkshakes like Maple Bourbon (£7.50) and Jagermeister (£7.50), which combines Jagermeister and vanilla. The no-reservations policy means you should be prepared to queue at peak times.
Sited in trendy Shoreditch, Honest Burgers’ burgers are cooked medium rare and are served up with rosemary salted chips. Gluten free buns are also available.
Hotdogs and champagne
Forget caviar, champagne is paired with gourmet hotdogs at the brilliantly-named Bubbledogs.
Located in buzzy restaurant hotspot Charlotte Street, Bubbledogs offer a scrumptious choice of pork, beef and vegetarian hotdogs, all of which are made using 100% beef or pork and cost from £6.
Hotdogs can be eaten ‘naked’ or with a choice of 15 toppings, that vary from Trishna (mango chutney, spicy coriander and mint sauce) to Breakie (fried egg, tomato relish, crispy bacon and black pudding). There are also a wide range of champagnes on offer, all of which hail from small champagne houses and cost from £6 a glass.
Free range chicken
London’s high streets might be awash with fried chicken shops, but several poshed-up joints have opened up in recent years to satisfy the more discerning poultry fan. Brixton’s Chicken Liquor serves up free-range fried chicken wings, bites and burgers (from £6 each) with a choice of melt-in-the-mouth coating. Yummy sides include slaw, corn and fries.
For delicious free-range rotisserie chicken, make a beeline for Chicken Shop, which has branches in London’s Kentish Town, Whitechapel, Tooting and Holborn. The menu is brief: choose from a quarter, half or whole chicken from the spit; then add a hot or smoky sauce – or keep it simple. Sides include crinkle cut fries, coleslaw, corn on the cop or lettuce and avocado salad. Finish up with one of three dreamy puds: apple pie, lemon tart or chocolate brownie.
Upcoming food trends for 2015?
- The dude food craze shows no signs of abating with pulled pork and dirty burgers still firmly on the menu at food markets across the capital.
- More small-plate restaurants, like tapas favourite Barrafina, where diners can share a choice of dishes, are expected to open this year.
- The UK’s first-ever cereal cafe opened in London’s Brick Lane last month and has been such a hit that it has already sold 20,000 bowls of cereal, prompting its owners to look to expand into Camden. Diners at the Cereal Killer Cafe can choose from 120 cereals from around the world, which can be customised with 30 different varieties of milk and 20 different toppings. Cereal Killer Cafe’s success is likely to encourage more novelty cafes to open across London.