London Fine Dining (on a budget)

If you know me, you will know that my favorite thing to do is get dressed up and go out to eat somewhere fun/ nice. From Instagram worthy desserts to amazing culinary masterpieces, I just love eating. London is the perfect place to be if you love eating good food as much as I do, however, it can be kind of expensive. So here is how I have found to eat the best food in London on a University students budget:

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Bookatable has become my new best friend since moving to London, I have been able to eat at the most insanely amazing restaurants for a fraction of the price. I signed up for their email list and I get emails all the time with new meal deals that can save you some serious cash. INSANE DEALS. I recently went back to one of my favorite London restaurants, Hawksmoor, with one of Bookatable’s deals. It was £30 for a three course meal and a cocktail. Cocktails at Hawksmoor are about £9 and the entree I got (some delicious lamb tomahawks and shepherds pie) originally was priced at about £22, plus you get a starter and dessert!

Bookatable also has a place on their site for “dining under £20”. Usually these under £20 deals even include a drink or a glass of wine! It is a great way to experience some fancy-schmancy restaurants for a fraction of the price. (And with the way things are priced in London its about the same price to eat at mediocre Five Guys… spend the extra £3 and go for some actually good food)

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I realize Laduree is neither cheap nor on Bookatable… but its still wonderful and magical and worth the splurge. 

Prioritize your spending. 

I am not a partier or a club – goer or much of a drinker of alcohol at all. So instead of spending £40 on drinks for a night out I would much rather spend that on a nice dinner and maybe one nice drink. I also choose to go to more free events on days out like museums or just exploring all of what London has to offer. This means more money for good food.

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Fever is an app that is pretty much like a London specific Groupon. I love using it for looking for fun things to do (or eat) for cheap! It is always full of buy one get one free drink deals, ideas for nights out or cheap theatre tickets! One of my favorite nights out using Fever was at Mews of Mayfair, we got a deal that was 2 drinks for £10! Most drinks at Mews range from £11-17 so obviously we seriously scored on this deal.


Check Instagram

Whenever I am out exploring a new part of London I love searching the “place” tags on Instagram to find great restaurants. I find this way better than just searching “food” on Google Maps because you can see real time photos of the food thats being served. I used Instagram to find an amazing brunch spot while wandering around Portobello Road one day. I saw a photo of someones smoked salmon eggs benedict (my all time fav brunch food!) and knew I had to try it for myself.  (and instagram it for myself duh)

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Opt for lunch deals

I’ve noticed that a lot of London restaurants have some amazing lunch deals! Usually its the same options as dinner just slightly smaller portions and a whole lot smaller on price! Keep an eye out of for daily deals, a lot of places (like Browns) have a meal of the day that is an especially good deal. *hint hint* LOBSTER THURSDAYS. 

Lunch deals are also great if you’re in the mood for brunch. I haven’t been able to find that many good brunch places yet (suggestions welcome!) but an early lunch with your girlfriends can count as brunch if you include champagne!

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Happy eating!


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