Your social life is saved with this list of London’s best restaurants and bars with heated outdoor spaces.
As far as the weather’s concerned, tier 2 has struck at – let’s say – not the most convenient time. The new restrictions, which were introduced for London on Saturday 17 October, dictate that only people who live in the same household or are in the same support bubble can socialise together indoors.
This means that any catching up with friends or family (up to six people, of course) who live separately to you will have to be done outside, which with November just a few weeks away, doesn’t leave an abundance of warm options. We certainly won’t be taking our picnic blankets down to the park any time soon, that’s for sure.
Luckily for Londoners, though, this city is known for its extensive selection of brilliant restaurants and bars which, although close at 10pm per the curfew, are often equipped with large outdoor terraces and heaters.
Here you’ll find an ever-growing list of some of London’s best restaurants which are home to heated open-air spaces where you’re safe to meet up with pals for food and drink without breaking restrictions or, you know, losing the use of your fingers.
Double Standard at The Standard
You might know The Standard hotel for its swish rooms but have you given its outdoor terrace a chance to impress you yet?
This atmospheric open-air setting was a firm favourite of Londoners throughout summer and now it has been given a cosy makeover ready for the winter months. Snuggle up in front of its crackling fire pit under the glowing festoon lighting and sheepskin furs.
From Monday to Sunday you can enjoy hearty fare accompanied by draft beers and classic cocktails for lunch and casual drinking and dining throughout the evening. Plus, there’s even a bottomless brunch with a DJ at the weekend if you’re in the party mood. This terrace is set to be one of the city’s cosiest spots to curl up in with friends this winter.
This hangout is situated just minutes from London Bridge, hidden away from the main road. It has a creative vibe and is a relaxed place to grab a drink with friends after work.
To comply with the tier two restrictions, Vinegar Yard has transformed its outdoor garden into a heated eating and drinking space with canopy cover and tables for up to six people.
There are a number of street food vendors on offer including Nanny Bill’s, Baba G’s, Sugo and Nik’s Kitchen, serving up grub from all over the world.
Vinegar Yard’s bar has a selection of drinks on offer including homemade mulled wine and hot apple cider, perfect for warming up on a chilly day.
Koya in the City has a large outdoor space with room enough for 50 guests in its covered and heated terrace, which is a snuggly place to sit come rain or shine.
What’s more, this Japanese udon noodle hotspot not only provides warming decor to keep you feeling toasty, but delicious bowls of steaming noodle dishes, which are sure to help keep winter’s bite at bay.
We particularly like the sound of the Buta Miso with pork mince and miso with spring onion and the Hiyashi Yasai Ten vegetable tempura. Yum.
Visit this mouth-watering pasta joint’s Westfield branch if you’re looking for a large, well-heated outdoor terrace to enjoy your freshly made carbonara.
If you’ve been doing some Christmas shopping at White City’s extensive range of stores, then this is the perfect place to take the weight off and enjoy delights such as seasonal prosecco slushies.
Plus, on Thursdays the restaurant offers its ‘Infinity Pasta’ menu where guests can enjoy an Aperol Spritz and unlimited plates of pasta for £25.
Flat Iron Square
Flat Iron Square is the place to be for a plethora of delicious food options in an easy-going space, with plenty of atmosphere.
There’s a large selection of independent food vendors to choose from including succulent fried chicken from Mother Clucker, fresh, hand-rolled pasta from La Nonna and Mexican-style tacos from Breddos – and that’s just the start.
You can book for up to six people in the outdoor seating area and keep cosy under the heaters while enjoying an eclectic vibe.
Barrafina is a small chain of London-based modern tapas restaurants serving up a fantastic selection of fish and seafood from both Spanish and British waters.
At the Dean Street site you’ll find not only lip-smacking dishes like scorpion fish, deep water mussels and sea urchins, but a heated outdoor terrace, too.
Huddle up in here in the thick of Soho with friends and watch the world go by from this snug spot, which has been erected especially for tier 2 restrictions.
There is still some fun to be had in London despite the tier 2 restrictions, and if you’re looking for party central you’ll need to catch the Tube to Paddington.
Pergola Paddington has a vibrant energy, an Instagrammable flower-covered terrace and tonnes of food and drinks options, making it a safe bet for a meet-up with friends.
Images: Vinegar Yard / courtesy of venues
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