It may be one of the most expensive city’s in the world, but if you’re a student about to move to London then fear not, for if you search beyond all the Mayfair joints and fine-dining restaurants in Chelsea you’ll find that there are plenty of affordable places to eat-out in the capital. Here are 7 of the best…
1. Flat Iron
Beautifully sizzled on the outside and just the right shade of pink on the inside, the Insta-famous steaks at Flat Iron are as tender as they are beautiful. And at just the mere price of £10, it’s no wonder that there are always hour-long queues outside this must-visit destination. Choose from any one of its five locations across the city centre, and make sure to order the creamed spinach; even though sides will cost you extra, you won’t regret it.
2. Franco Manca
This popular pizza house runs on one basic winning formula: keeping things fuss-free, quality and affordable. In all of its London-based locations, the restaurant pays homage to the Neapolitan kitchen, dishing out delicious sourdough pizzas which have been topped with Italian cheese, cured meats, simple sauces and baked in a wood-burning brick oven. Perfetto!
This bijou-sized eatery specialises in authentic German sausages, so if you want to sample a prime-slice of the Bavarian cuisine look no further. On the menu you’ll find everything from a schnitzel sandwich to currywurst and pommes. But for Herman’s finest offering, indulge in ‘Ze Wilde Bock Roll’ – a smoky pork bockwurst that’s been drenched with curry sauce and sprinkled with crispy onions.
Looking for a quick snack that’ll tide you over until dinner? Then head on over to either Fitzrovia, Soho or Netil Market. At BAO they serve up pillow-soft steamed-milk buns to crowds of hungry foodies at reasonable prices, with their signature Cod black bao dish costing only £5. The only warning I’d give is to avoid going when incredibly famished – you’ll want to keep ordering until closing time.
If you’re a northerner enrolling at any one of London’s universities, you’ll be safe in the knowledge that there are gourmet pies on offer down south. And few places can beat Piebury Corner in terms of value for money. Depending on your mood, you can go for the ‘Lee Dixon’ (a steaming-hot chicken Balti pie’), the ‘Ray Parlour’ (pork, apple and stuffing crammed inside a thin layer of flaky pastry) or, if those two don’t tickle your fancy, there are 15 other options available.
6. Beigel Bake
Shoreditch’s Beigel Bake has become a London institution for good reason. Not only is it open 24 hours (perfect for a post-night-out visit), but the goods on offer are near-legendary. But the best of the lot? The thick, moist and incredibly more-ish salt beef bagel.
7. Tokyo Diner
This no-frills Japanese diner has become a student hotspot in recent years. Not only are Katsu curries, bento boxes and sushi dishes priced around the £10-mark, but staff will also give you rice gratis if you’re not satiated. Also, service won’t cost you a penny, as this restaurant practises the traditional Japanese policy of refusing to accept tips. A trio of wins for those on a budget.
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