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The Best Restaurants In Stoke Newington

If you’re looking for brunch, natural wine, gelato, and lahmacun—on the same day or not—then you should check out these Stoke Newington spots.
The Best Restaurants In Stoke Newington image

photo credit: Karolina Wiercigroch

Stoke Newington or Stokey, as it’s affectionately known to some of its buggy-manoeuvring and reusable coffee cup-gripping residents, is one of north London’s most aesthetically pleasing areas. There’s Clissold Park, there’s Abney Cemetery, and there’s the oldest Wetherspoons in London. Green and beer-stained spaces aside, there are also a load of excellent places to eat around here. From back-alley brunch spots to takeaway roti, this is where you should be eating in Stoke Newington.


THE SPOTS

photo credit: The Clarence Tavern

Modern European

Stoke Newington

$$$$Perfect For:Casual Weeknight DinnerCatching Up With MatesLunchOutdoor SeatingSunday Roast

A direct descendant of two of London’s original and still-brilliant gastropubs—the Anchor & Hope and the Canton Arms—The Clarence Tavern is a younger sibling that feels like it’s been about on Church Street for years. The bustling gastropub is a popular family destination—there’s plenty of buggy room—and its warm, wooden feel is a crowd-pleaser. Food-wise there are exemplary pies, wobbling panna cottas, and tender shoulders of lamb to share with dauphinoise and greens. It’s just as good for hunkering down for dinner inside as it is for a sunny tomato salad-filled lunch in the back garden.


Esters is easily the best brunch place in Stoke Newington, and probably the whole of this part of London. Yes, you have to queue, but time it right and it won’t be for very long. Besides, it’s worth it. They get pretty creative with their food, like confit pork with fried egg and rhubarb ketchup. They take their coffee seriously as well, but none of this makes for a poncey atmosphere—it’s relaxed, friendly, and generally easy-going.


Our favourite type of restaurant is the one you walk past for months before eventually remembering to give it a try, and it turns out to be absolutely brilliant. Rubedo is one of those and we already regret telling you about it. The food is Italian-inspired but generally it’s just excellent, fresh-tasting produce treated very simply and very well. Think burrata with Italian anchovy fish sauce or prosciutto with quince and radicchio. Paired-back, delicious things that work well together. The wines are natural, much like the rest of the approach, and, once you settle in, it’s very easy to forget you’re in England, let alone the top of Church Street.


A hurried power walk out of Stoke Newington station can see you pass Roti Stop in a flash. But those in the know will pause to assess how many bodies are crammed into this matchbox-sized Caribbean takeaway on the corner, and whether they’ve got time to grab a beef patty. Rotis and curries are the way to go: the goat is softly stewed and warmly spiced, and a flaky yellow roti with hearty channa is a nourishing lunch to eat on the platform or at home. Drink-wise, get one homemade peanut punch for now and one for later. You won’t regret it.


Every part of London is full of favourites. Favourite pubs, newsagents, chicken shops, and bus stops. The reasons vary—be it Taytos behind the bar, or a bossman with boss chat—but the point is you’ve got your go-tos for a reason, and Numara Bos Cirrik II is one of our favourite Turkish spots around Stoke Newington. It’s a straightforward, old-school ocakbasi restaurant that just makes downright good food. We’ve lost count of the number of times we’ve come here for a beyti wrap and stayed for a bowl of lentil soup. The menu is standard, classic fare and so is the inside. As good for groups as it is for solo grilled meats, it’s a firm favourite and we don’t think that will ever change.


Thanks to its tarpaulin sign and occasionally fluid opening hours, there’s a bit of a transitory feel about Vietnamese spot Pho Viet 101. But plonk yourself down on one of its plastic tables or lean on a counter looking out on to Stoke Newington High Street, and you’ll enjoy one of N16’s best-value meals. The bánh mìs, under a tenner and always satisfying, are our go-tos, and the phở broth has more clarity than comfier places in Dalston.


photo credit: Giulia Verdinelli

$$$$

Romeo & Giulietta is a little gelateria just south of Clissold Park that makes extremely creamy and two-scoop-essential gelato. There are plenty of options like white chocolate, hazelnut, and ricotta with caramelised figs, but if the biscokrok is on you shouldn’t hesitate to get it. Plus, the black cherry praline is some of the best vegan gelato we’ve tried. Don’t miss the mini ice cream cones that you can use as a spoon, which is basically the single most useful invention since someone came up with big ice cream cones.


Escocesa is a neighbourhood tapas spot where all the seafood is sourced from Scotland. This means juicy Orkney scallops, octopus with white bean purée and capers, and grilled Shetland mussels. Vibe-wise it's a popular date spot and, if that’s what you’re after, you’ll want a seat at the bar. It’s moodily lit, classy but casual, and there’s a view of the action—perfect to enjoy a few plates and a couple of glasses.


photo credit: Karolina Wiercigroch

$$$$Perfect For:BreakfastBrunch

There are a couple of things to know before you visit The Good Egg for brunch. First, it’s extremely popular so be prepared to queue, and second, everything’s sharing-style, so definitely lean towards coming with a few people. The Middle Eastern-inspired restaurant is reminiscent of an NYC-style brunch spot and it’s a popular, if a little inconsistent quality-wise, N16 mainstay. But if you stick to anything with freshly baked bread you’ll be happy. The pastrami-cured lox plate with toasted challah is a favourite.


This place used to be called L’Antica Pizzeria da Michele and people would come to Stoke Newington Church Street from all over London to try one of two pizzas on the menu—margherita or marinara—made just like they are in Naples. Though the famous name might have gone, this simple little spot has maintained standards, and the pizzas are up there with the best London has to offer. And on those days when the weather is as good as it probably is in Naples, they have a small garden you can book.


Wander down Church Street on a Saturday morning and you’ll find a queue snaking down Woodlea Road, all leading to the luminous orange Spence Bakery on the corner. A misty-eyed favourite among N16 locals and restaurants, Spence makes excellent bread, pastries, and sandwiches. Most people line up for their weekend sourdough but you would be foolish not to walk out with a pain au chocolat and a coffee as well. Clissold Park is across the road, after all.

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