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Guide

Where To Book A Big Christmas Meal

Where to book a Christmas meal with your friends and colleagues.

17 Spots
Launch Map
17 Spots
Launch Map

It’s nearly that time of the year. Christmas is coming. Also arriving soon: the heavy duty strategic planning with your partner to ensure the least possible amount of time spent with either family, the unique look of disappointment and disgust from your Secret Santa recipient at work, and the screams from your sibling because you had ‘one job to do’, and that was to bring the parsnips. Which you forgot.

But before all that fun, you may have the task of arranging an end-of-year Christmas meal for a bunch of people that you either work with or whom you call ‘friends’. If you book any of the spots below, it should keep you in the spirit of things before those spirits are broken by the train ride home on the 24th of December.

The spots

Giulia Verdinelli

Luca

££££
££££ 88 St John St

Price: £55, £75, £95pp

Minimum reservation: 6 people

Luca is one of our favourite Italian restaurants in London, and they also happen to have two excellent private rooms, one of which is where they make their pasta fresh daily. From the end of November onwards, they’re doing a £55 five-course menu, a £75 six-course menu, and a £95 seven-course marathon that you must make it your duty to get your company to sign off on. This place is a great option if you want to show your group you know what’s cool.

St. John Bar And Restaurant

££££
££££ 26 St John St

Price: £53 - £58pp

Minimum reservation: 9 people

St. John is sacred ground for performative and genuine offal enthusiasts the world over, so it’s fair to say that they know a thing or two about meat. At Christmas they’re doing five different menus that, according to their website, are all ‘structured around one central beast or fish’. The beasts, or meats as we call them, include game, beef, and goose. Or, if you’re feeling all Lord of the Flies, a whole suckling pig that starts at £410 for 14 people.

The Anchor & Hope

££££
Pub  in  Southwark
££££ 36 The Cut

Price: £40 - £60 pp

Minimum reservation: None

Anchor and Hope is London gastropub royalty, and one of the spots we always steer people to when they find themselves lost and hungry somewhere around the South Bank. This year they’re serving a Christmas lunch and it’s a good call if you work in the area. The standard set menu is £40 per person, there’s a vegetarian option, and if there are more than six of you, you can do the £69 per person goose roast.

Gloria

££££
££££ 54-56 Great Eastern Street

Price: £48pp

Minimum reservation: 8 people

Although every day feels like Christmas at Gloria - the chintzy Shoreditch trattoria that looks like the inside of a glittery pizza bauble - they’ve also got a Christmas-specific group menu as well. Everything is made for sharing, from burrata and focaccia starters, to their gran carbonara mixed in a pecorino wheel. There are a couple of Christmas specials as well, including a Christmas tree pizza that, we assume, will have edible baubles and hopefully a sparkler as well.

Karolina Wiercigroch

Brigadiers

££££
Indian  in  City
££££ 1-5 Bloomberg Arcade

Price: £60 - £88pp

Minimum reservation: 4 people for the steak and lobster menu

We’ll use any excuse to go and celebrate at Brigadiers, so you should probably make Christmas lunch yours. This upmarket Indian barbeque spot in the City has everything from a whisky vending machine, to a pool room you can abscond to if you happen to hate your colleagues, as well as slick booths, and several private dining areas. There’s also a whole lot of festive options to suit your needs, with a festival lunch for £60 per person, a steak and lobster festive feast for £88, and a festive vegetarian lunch for £60.

Maggie Jones's

££££
££££ 6 Old Court Place

Price: £37.50pp

Minimum reservation: None

If you’re going to have to listen to your entire family moan about their two-hour trip to London to see you for a Christmas lunch, then you’re going to want, at the very least, some decent turkey. Luckily, this old-school Kensington haunt really knows their meat. It’s the kind of mildly eccentric restaurant that’ll have even your angriest uncle smiling by the time he finishes his cheese and leek tart starter. Their £37.50 three-course menu will give you plenty of classically British options, from a fish pie and their grilled chicken breast with creamed tarragon sauce, to a stupidly tasty apple crumble. We’d recommend the roast rump of lamb with rosemary and garlic to really get you in the holiday spirit, by which we mean, to keep your mouth both busy, and very happy, whilst your mum starts her annual game of ‘guess why our child is single’. Perfect.

Ciao Bella

££££
PizzaPastaItalian  in  Bloomsbury
££££ 86-90 Lamb's Conduit St

Price: £35pp

Minimum reservation: None

Ciao Bella is a perma-party restaurant for much of London and it’s where you go when you value good times more than anything else. This old-school Italian institution knows how to celebrate every day of the week, piano-player and all, and unsurprisingly it’s no different at Christmas. Their festive menu includes 80s family buffet classics like salmon with a side of crayfish, as well as duck breast cooked in a red berry sauce. If that doesn’t abrasively shout IT’S CHRISTMAS to you, then there are fresh pasta and turkey options as well.

Holborn Dining Room

££££
British  in  Holborn
££££ 252 High Holborn

Price: £70 - £90pp

Minimum reservation: 10 people

Holborn Dining Room is one for the Christmas traditionalists, the sorts who shake their head and frown intensely when sprouts are mentioned any time prior to December. The menu options are pricey, but this place is perfect for a big corporate Christmas knees-up where gravy’s spilt and red wine is quaffed.

Royal China Club

££££
££££ 40 Baker St

Price: £45pp

Minimum reservation: 2 people

Sure the Queen’s speech is cute and all, but eating an inhuman amount of sesame prawn toast at Royal China is the kind of celebration of monarchy that we can really get behind. This excellent Chinese restaurant in Marylebone has a Christmas set menu that’s full of their upmarket, signatures like their stir-fried prawns and scallops with XO sauce, as well as Christmas specials like Vietnamese turkey spring rolls. Plus, their Christmas set menu has a two person minimum which is perfect if you’re on the hunt for somewhere good for small groups.

Gunpowder

££££
££££ 4 Duchess Walk

Price: £45, £60, or £70pp

Minimum reservation: None

If you’re sick at the thought of your eighteenth slab of beef and gravy for lunch in December, then the Indian sharing plates at Gunpowder in Tower Bridge will come as a very welcome relief. There are three different festive menus on offer, from a casual £45 option, to the full-blown £70 feast that includes some of our favourite dishes like the Gunpowder aloo chat and the soft shell crab, alongside a 28-day dry aged Cote de Boeuf with Kerala pepper sauce. If you choose to forego buying that cousin a scarf she’ll never wear and spend an extra twenty-five quid on going all in at Gunpowder, we definitely wouldn’t judge you.

The Camberwell Arms

££££
BritishPub  in  Camberwell
££££ 65 Camberwell Church St

Price: £35pp

Minimum reservation: None

Last time you were at a pub with your colleagues, that nice guy in accounting got served the wrong pale ale, revealed just how many swear words he knows in German, and was never seen again. Don’t worry, The Camberwell Arms is not that kind of pub - it’s comfortable, warm, and the food is downright tasty. Their 3 courses for £35 set menu is served ‘family-style’ with mains like glazed smoked ham or a slowly roasted salt marsh lamb to choose from. If you’re rolling with the whole office, it’s worth noting that you can book out the whole upstairs for 45 people, and they even provide your Christmas crackers and personalised menus. Looking thoughtful has never been easier.

Casa do Frango

££££
££££ 32 Southwark St

Price: £45 - £65pp

Minimum reservation: 8 people

Chicken specialists Casa Do Frango aren’t making any exceptions for the Christmas period with their Portuguese feast menu that includes half a chicken per person. Although not ideal for vegetarians, this London Bridge spot is a fine deal if you’re a human dustbin like ourselves. Alongside the half chicken there’s a welcome drink, small plates and sides to share, dessert, and half a bottle of wine per person.

La Mia Mamma

££££
Italian  in  Chelsea
££££ 257 King’s Road

Price: £35, £40, £45pp

Minimum reservation: None

We love spending time with family at Christmas. Not our real family, they’re a bunch of weirdos. No, by family, we mean the troop of female chefs at this Italian restaurant that once fed additional lasagne because they were checking out a new recipe. This rustic place on the King’s Road is surprisingly affordable, with a £35 Mamma’s Xmas Menu that includes a welcome drink, pasta to share, dessert, a digestif, and espresso. If you’re anti-pasta for your Christmas lunch - who hurt you? - they also have £40 and £45 options that include antipasti, pasta to share, and then mains like pan fried skewers of thin beef, stuffed with parmesan, pecorino, breadcrumbs, and minced meat. Honestly though, go for the pasta - this place serves some of the best in London.

Quality Chop House

££££
££££ 94 Farringdon Rd

Price: £49 - £69pp

Minimum reservation: 2 people

You, your grandmother, and every person that has a secret crush on Colin Firth knows that the Christmas season is all about the period drama. And really, Quality Chop House in Clerkenwell is the period drama of London restaurants. A proper old school British restaurant, their seasonal set menu is £49 and not only involves Christmas pudding ice cream with brandy custard, but a whole turkey with sprouts and bacon. Basically, we can’t really think of a better place to go when you want to feel a bit Dickens, get cosy, and celebrate with cranberry and game terrine.

Coal Rooms

££££
££££ 11a Station Way

Price: £40pp

Minimum reservation: 8 people

The Sunday roast at Coal Rooms is one of our favourites in London, and that bodes very well for their festive offerings. It’s right by Peckham Rye train station (hello easy access to the overground after your fifth sherry), serves reliably tasty small plates, and even has an intimate private dining space. If you’re looking for something that’s a bit different but still screams ‘Santa’s coming’, their £40 Christmas feasting menu comes with things like St. John sourdough, chicken fat potatoes, and a whole guinea fowl. Just be warned, there’s only space for twelve.

Native

££££
££££ 32 Southwark Street

Price: £50pp

Minimum reservation: 9 people

Nothing says ‘Merry Christmas’ like eating an actual Douglas Fir, right? Well, that’s part of one of the dishes you can expect as part of Native’s ‘Wild Christmas’ menu. This kind-of casual fine dining spot in Southwark is all about zero-waste and seasonal British food with a difference. For £50 per person you can expect a proper four-course dinner, but all that seasonality means that their menu changes constantly. You can expect things like quince and ginger beer mince pies, brown crab with sea shore vegetables, and plenty of vegetarian options too.

Llewelyn's

££££
££££ 293- 295 Railton Rd

Price: £42pp

Minimum reservation: 6 people

Sometimes team dinners mean 40 people plus the partners you hear them moan about every day. But sometimes it just means you and those three people that proofread your emails because you’re freelance. For those kinds of small, intimate Christmas dinners there’s Lleweyln’s. This charming little restaurant by Herne Hill station is pretty much the definition of idyllic. Their three-course set menu is full of things like celeriac and brown shrimp soup, pheasant pie, stuffed Tamworth loin, and clementine sorbet. But if you leave without getting the sticky toffee pudding, Christmas is cancelled.

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