One of the most positive outcomes from the last few years has been the rise of excellent outdoor dining spots, particularly in London. From pop-up street seating to gardens filled with tables, the capital’s restaurants have embraced al-fresco eating in a big way.


You could easily pass by this grand house in the middle of the busy Vauxhall gyratory and have no idea of the delights that lay within. Chef Jackson Boxer has turned this Grade II listed Georgian mansion into a dining destination. The interior is stuffed full of antique trinkets, furniture and chandeliers and the wisteria vine-covered outdoor tables are just as atmospheric. Book the whole space for a special treat or grab one of the terrace tables for a memorable meal.


Hidden down a side street just off the King’s Road, Stanley’s secret garden is a blooming escape for those in the know. It takes its inspiration from the English country garden with cascading plants and blossoms covering the courtyard restaurant and orangery. Head chef Olivia Burt – one of the finalists of 2019’s Masterchef: The Professionals – perfectly complements the outdoor setting with intricate summer dishes.


This Mayfair restaurant draws in the city’s foodie crowd. Two former chefs at Dinner by Heston have created their own restaurant with a strong sustainability focus, introducing a small, ever-changing menu including dishes such as charred corn ribs, mushroom parfait with shiitake and black truffle, whole lemon sole with bacon-butter sauce and miso-heavy kombu fries. The outdoor terrace can be heated, plus it is on traffic-free Heddon Street.


This has to be the prettiest courtyard in the West End. Complete with flower installations, huge terracotta pots and the smartest outdoor furniture we’ve ever seen, this is the second restaurant from Petersham Nurseries in Covent Garden. La Goccia is more casual than Petersham next door (which also has a small number of tables outside), serving delicious plates of Italian cichetti: squid in chilli-spiked tomato salsa and white asparagus sprinkled with edible flowers.


Soho stalwart Quo Vadis had been delighting customers since 1926, and even more so now with head chef Jeremy Lee’s innovative dishes. When the weather is good, they open the few sought after tables on the street. Expect punchy pasties, super-fresh seafood platters and retro takes on classics. 

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