Whilst cooking Christmas lunch might be a tradition for many, there’s something to be said about donning your finery and heading out to eat after a festive morning at home. For those wishing to do so, there are several restaurants open on Christmas Day that cater to all tastes, whether you fancy turkey with all the trimmings or something a little lighter. Here are our picks around London – act fast, though, because these tables are in high demand.
15 Beeston Pl, SW1W 0JW
The Goring, Belgravia
This Royal Warranted hotel is always a treat at Christmas. The late Queen even hosted a festive lunch here a few years ago; fittingly, the hotel has partnered with Garrard’s to create a pair of tiara-themed trees in tribute to Her Majesty. Soak in the décor over a Christmas menu of elevated yet traditional dishes – think a starter of glazed lobster and venison wellington joining roast turkey for the main – as well as The Goring’s famous Christmas pudding.
The Restaurant at The Twenty Two, Mayfair
The newest restaurant on this list – launched in April 2022 – The Twenty Two’s festive menu encapsulates the hotel slash members’ club’s unapologetic opulence. Six courses will be served in its blue-and-gold dining room, featuring lighter dishes such as grilled seabass and baked pumpkin alongside more traditional options – including, of course, a flaming Christmas pudding.
Grosvenor Square, W1K 6LF
1 Wilbraham Pl, Sw1X 9AE
Kahani London, Chelsea
If the idea of a traditional turkey dinner fills you with horror, you might do better with a booking at Indian fine dining restaurant, Kahani. Coming with a promise to add a ‘new chapter’ to Britain’s love affair with Indian cuisine, the menu is just about recognisable as Christmas lunch. Turkey vindaloo and korma-glazed baby sprouts join Kashmiri lamb and black cod, but traditional puddings are switched for cinnamon chocolate mousse with poached cranberries.
The Connaught, Mayfair
All three restaurants at The Connaught will be open on Christmas Day. Tableside-carved turkey is available at The Grill and Jean-Georges (plus truffle-heavy risotto and salmon at the latter), but we’re setting our sights on the lavish six-course Hélène Darroze experience. There’s no turkey in sight here, but there is turbot, capon and foie gras – plus an optional wine pairing.
16 Carlos Pl, W1K 2AL
16 Bury St, SW1Y 6AJ
Quaglino’s, St James’s
With live music from 12pm – 8pm, it’s set to be a day of dancing at Quaglino’s. Stay in your seat for its impressive Christmas lunch, though; its Italian-English fusion means you can lean as far into – or away from – tradition as you like, with tortelloni, turkey, gnocchi and mince pies all up for grabs.
Bingham Riverhouse, Richmond
Richmond is at its most magical in December; trees glitter in frost, mist curls from the river, and Bingham Riverhouse installs its luxurious fairy-lit glass igloos. Book one of these if dining in a group; it’s yours to lounge in for the entire day, and everything is served to share. For something more experimental, go for the six-course tasting menu at Restaurant Steven Edwards, which includes buttery celeriac soup and a delightful ‘dippy egg’; a grown-up take on the childhood classic.
61–63 Petersham Rd, TW10 6UT
Wilton Pl, SW1X 7RL
The Berkeley goes all in at Christmas, so it’s only natural that its in-house restaurant follows suit. Dreamt up by acclaimed chef Marcus Wareing, the menu reimagines traditional festive ingredients such as salmon, turkey and chestnuts over six elevated courses. Sophisticated and sustainably sourced, this is a better option for adult-only groups; plus, the wine pairing is a decadent addition.
Decimo at The Standard, Kings Cross
Spend Christmas Day merrily on high at Decimo, which sits on the 10th floor of The Standard London. Its Mexican-Spanish menu is far from standard; pressed suckling pig is followed by a choice of roast cod, squash or duck breast, and desserts are similarly special – we’d go for the sherry-doused chocolate mousse, although the Tres leches cake also sounds delightful.
10 Argyle St, WC1H 8EG
4 Knightsbridge Grn, SW1X 7QA
We love this New York outpost, located in the Bvlgari Hotel. A fittingly luxe environment hosts delicious Italian, expertly crafted. The Christmas menu features both Italian and classic dishes; choose from traditional roasted bronze turkey or lobster tagliolini. They’re open Christmas Eve too, with a similar menu if you prefer your meal out to be in anticipation of the big day.
The Cadogan Arms, Chelsea
A luxury pub (yes, they exist!) on King’s Road, The Cadogan Arms literally goes the whole hog at Christmas with a feasting menu featuring a suckling pig. Set menus also stray from tradition, with set braised deer shoulder, confit goose leg and its take on Christmas pud. Please note that as of November, it is fully booked – but a lunch like this is worth getting on the waiting list for.
298 King's Rd, SW3 5UG
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