With more than a nod to Virginia Woolf, the Dalloway Terrace – named after her 1925 novel Mrs Dalloway – is aptly located in Bloomsbury, a neighbourhood with a rich literary heritage. Rather than assuming that summer in London enjoys three solid months of hot sunshine, this new venue is a touch more realistic, offering an indoor-outdoor dining spot complete with a retractable roof for those rainy days (and, of course, for colder months of the year). If the weather behaves, its leafy terrace is a delightful hideaway. It’s in the capable hands of restaurant manager Andrei Maxim (formerly at The Ledbury and Maze by Gordon Ramsay), serving modern British dishes throughout the day, from seared tuna with pickled radish and wasabi to coq au vin with crusty sourdough bread.
Boulestin has been famed for its classic French cuisine with an English flourish ever since the food writer Xavier Marcel Boulestin moved to London in 1906 and established his first restaurant here in 1925. He opened Boulestin in Covent Garden two years later, which soon attracted high society and notable names including the likes of Charlie Chaplin and Marlene Dietrich. It was a sad day when the restaurant closed in 1994, following his death. After a long wait, it reopened in 2013, in stylish St. James’s, producing a menu of which Monsieur B would have been proud. The latest string to its bow is the enchanting private courtyard, illuminated by original Victorian gas lamps and lined with panels from King Henry VIII’s Real Tennis courts. While you tuck into head chef Elliot Spurdle’s new five-course tasting menu, which features dishes such as wild mushroom consommé and grilled Basque sirloin, take a look around: you’re dining on the site of the last duel fought in England.