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Eating out in London

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London is undoubtedly one of the most ethnically diverse cities in the world. Whatever be your choice of cuisine - Italian, Chinese, Indian, Russian, Thai, restaurants all here at London. Literally, you will be spoilt for a choice as far as eating out in London is concerned. The sheer diversity of restaurants that dot the London landscape is astonishing to the first time visitor.

London boasts of a staggering 10,000 plus restaurants and the list is growing every week, so much so that it is virtually difficult to keep a tab on them.

It wouldn't be out of place to mention that in today's London one can find culinary delights of more than 50 countries of the world and that includes Greek, Italian, Spanish, French, Indian, Chinese, Thai, Lebanese, West Indian and African to name just a few. Apart from noveau international cuisines, traditional British food is still popular in most London restaurants.

London, being a bustling metropolis, you will find restaurants, cafes and pubs wherever you go and sometimes you will come across eating joints and Food Courts in the strangest of locales. So it is worth your while to take some time out of your busy schedule, to find out which one is best suited to your taste and inclination.

The food scene in London has evolved a great deal in the last few decades and today London boasts of a gastronomic heritage which is unparalleled by any other metropolitan city in the world.

Some of the world's renowned international chefs have made London their base and the manner in which these celebrity chefs have redefined the culinary landscape of London is nothing short of extraordinary, particularly when it comes to the use of British ingredients and providing the classical recipes with a contemporary twist to the utter delight of today's health conscious global citizens.

Some trends are worth noting, particularly the manner in which Indian and French restaurants in london have carved a niche for themselves. The British passion for fiery Indian curries is now a well-established fact of London's happening food scene. The Chinese and Indian cuisines combined together have managed to break the age-old monopoly of French and Italian chefs. Today, apart from oriental cuisines, African and West Indian cuisines too are making their presence felt. With such a volatile culinary scene, London is easily the most exciting metropolis in terms of its bewildering array of gastronomic delights available.

But inspite of the enormous changes in London's culinary landscape, the age-old British Pub culture has continued to exist and is one of the most enduring British legacies. A visit to an authentic English pub, especially in the bewitchingly beautiful London Riverside is highly recommended for visitors to London. Apart from the finest selections of beer and ale, most pubs also offer decent gastronomic delights and some pubs have even expert bartenders who actually advise and assist you in choosing the right kind of food in relation to the drink.

All said and done, food in London doesn't come cheap. In fact, it is notoriously expensive. But it more than makes up with its incredible diversity of options as well as the abundant availability of fresh ingredients.

However, if you happen to stroll around Picadilly Circus during lunch time, you will surely come across restaurants in london offering special discounted meals - "All-you-can-eat" packages for 5. A similar scene awaits you in Chinatown as well during lunchtime.

In your search of a restaurants in London, you have to be a little more cautions than you would normally do in other European cities like Paris and Rome. A reliable guide is very helpful.

Lunchtime London starts around 12 noon and Dinner by 8 p.m. Although the elderly lot might finish off dinner by 6 p.m.

Apart from top end luxury hotels like Ritz, which insist on proper attires, most middle and bottom rung restaurants and bars of London don't have any strict dress code. Smart casuals are fine everywhere. Sleeveless vests and designer shorts are absolute no, nos. In pubs anything goes except being bare chested. Some pubs though, might have a No Jeans rule and a customary watchman to enforce the rule. But that is about it.

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