24 Hours To Dine: Eating Your Way Through London's Best Food Spots
The general manager of full service restaurants for Loob Holdings, Ryan Yeoh is an avid traveller and foodie, often combining the two for both work and leisure. Under his care, Yeoh manages restaurants like Define:Food, Hacha Mecha and cocktail bar Ikki, using his experiences dining around the globe to bring unique culinary experience to Malaysian gourmands.
Thanks to a stint studying in London, this Penangite chooses this iconic European city as his one of his top food destinations due to the colourful world-class offers available. From top notch cocktail bars to exceptional brunch spots, even if you only have 24 hours in London, Yeoh's top spots to eat will gave you a great taste of what the city has to offer.
Brunch – Chiltern Firehouse
If you've got the luxury to have brunch in London, Yeoh suggests heading to the charming Chiltern Firehouse for a great meal.
"I recommend the buttermilk pancakes that comes with clotted cream and jam, delish! You can't go wrong with their cornish brown crab scrambled eggs as well. Although this place is on the pricier side, the great food together with the ambience makes it worth it," says Yeoh.
If you're lucky, Yeoh even mentions that there's a good chance you might spot a celebrity dining here too.
Lunch – Gold Mine
London continues to have a strong reputation for serving some of the best Cantonese roast meats in the world, even amongst the Chinese themselves. And Yeoh is no exception.
"For lunch let’s raise the most debatable topic for any Malaysian living in London, 'is the roast duck at Four Seasons or Gold Mine better?'. I find both spectacular but if I have to pick I’ll lean towards Gold Mine," says Yeoh. "The duck is fatter and comes drenched in a flavorful soy sauce that is perfect for dousing your fluffy white rice with," he adds.
Lunch #2 – Bleecker
Who doesn't love a fat juicy burger? Opened in 2012 by an ex-lawyer, Bleecker's aim to create fuss-free honest-to-goodness burgers is what made the burger food truck turned restaurant one of the best spots in the city for a satisfying burger.
"For the best burger in London, head over to Bleecker's. It's a no nonsense burger joint with hardly any seating space but the moment that double bacon cheeseburger arrives it's all worth it," says Yeoh.
"The patty is made up off different cuts of aged beef, seasoned and seared to perfection, that's topped with melted American cheese and a special sauce. I assure you that you'll regret it if you had Shake Shack across the street instead".
Tea – Borough Market
One of London's most famous spots for food, Borough Market makes the cut on Yeoh's top picks as the perfect place to get anything your palate desires.
"There’s a reason why this place is the most mainstream food market in London. It has a vast, eclectic selection of cuisines. Indonesian to Italian, Turkish to Thai, Moroccan to Malaysian, you name it," says Yeoh.
For him, two places come to mind, one sweet and one savoury.
Tea – Bread Ahead
Part bakery and part baking school, Bread Ahead gets a special place in Yeoh's heart for their delicious custard donuts, although it does come with a challenge every time he pays this popular place a visit.
"As I approach the front, my heart always races and my palms get sweaty as I question myself if I want a vanilla bean custard donut or the caramel custard. The only satisfactory solution? I get both," says Yeoh.
Early Dinner – La Tua Pasta
For delicious Italian noodles, Yeoh recommends La Tua Pasta, an artisanal pasta maker with a stall in Borough Market and around London.
"Anytime I want fresh pasta made with quality ingredients, nothing fancy schmancy and just comfort food in its simplest form, I head to La Tua pasta. Be ready to queue however, but you can never really go wrong with anything on their menu," he says.
Dinner – Galvin La Chapelle
"For dinner, head on over to Galvin La Chapelle, a beautiful modern French restaurant housed in an old chapel," suggests Yeoh.
"Grab a drink at the bar while they prepare your table and soak in the ambiance of the night. Although I would say that all the dishes prepared here are world class, the one that blew me away was the luxurious crab lasagna," he adds.
And there you have it for dinner.
Late Night Drinks – Nightjar
With a flourishing drinking scene, it can be intimidating to find a good cocktail bar. Yeoh recommends Nightjar as an excellent venue to spend the night with beautiful cocktails and a live jazz performance.
He praises the bar's expertly crafted creative drinks, as they are known for using an extensive list of ingredients and unique vessels to create a memorable drinking experience.
Supper – Brick Lane Beigel Bake
End your night with a trip to an iconic Jewish bakery. Open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, Yeoh recommends Brick Lane Beigel Bake instead of settling for a shawarma or a slice of pizza.
"Get their famous salted beef sandwich with mustard and pickles. The salty beef tucked in a warm chewy bagel when combined with the tang of the pickles & mustard is amazing. But add in the cold London air and a hearty appetite after having a few drinks? Perfect," says Yeoh.