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The Best Places In London For a Slap-Up Pre-Theatre Dinner

Off to the theatre? Don’t settle for a quick bite or a naff sandwich beforehand. The Resident sets you up for a night of excellence with our pick of where to go for a pre or post show meal. 

Photo: SUSHISAMBA

1 Clos Maggiore

Ideal for The Royal Opera House and theatres on the Strand

Once voted the most romantic restaurant in London, Clos Maggiore is the perfect start to your dinner and theatre date night. The Covent Garden fave plates ups modern European fare that takes its cues from the country-cooking of Tuscany and the south of France. From the extravagant cocktails and smooth wines, to rich main courses you will leave full, merry and ready for a night of theatre.

Pre-theatre service: Monday to Sunday 5pm-6pm

Price: Three courses £39.50; Sommelier selected wine £25 (Mon-Thurs only)

Address: 33 King Street, Covent Garden WC2E 8JD

Website: closmaggiore.com

2 Prix Fixe Brasserie

Ideal for Soho Theatre, The Lyric, Piccadilly Theatre, The Apollo

Perhaps unassuming and unexpected at first, but a winning choice all the same, Prix Fix Brasserie is a classic French bistro with rotating specials and wallet-friendly prices. Dishes change weekly and the wine list is extensive and full of old world wines which you can order by the glass, bottle or carafe.

Pre-theatre service: Sunday to Thursday until 6.30pm; Friday & Saturday until 6pm

Price: two courses £14.90

Address: 39 Dean Street, Soho, W1D 4PU

Website: prixfixe.net

3 St Martin’s House

Ideal for Cambridge Theatre, St Martin's Theatre and Palace Theatre

Another venue that's friendly on the wallet, the newish St Martin's House in Seven Dials has as two or three course pre-theatre menu made up of modern British dishes. Tuck into the likes of cumin busted calamari and sheperd's pie or cauliflower steak with a chimichurri rub, before finishing with a classic dessert - an Eton Mess for example. You can also pop in for a post-theatre cocktail or two. 

Pre-theatre service: Available seven days a week. 

Price: From £17

Address: 4A Upper St Martin's Lane WC2H 9NY

Website: stmartinshouselondon.co.uk

4 Joe Allen

Ideal for The Lyceum, Adelphi Theatre, Theatre Royal Drury Lane

Joe Allen reopened in October 2021 with new bar Joe’s Tavern at the front of the restaurant which is a New-York style drinking den for pre and post show theatre goers and punters alike. The kitchen prepares American brasserie-style food – think Cornish shrimp bisque, Caesar salad, and slope braised and smoked baby back ribs. There’s also an extensive wine list to discover as well.

Service: Tuesday to Saturday 12pm-11pm; Sunday 12pm-6.30pm

Address: 2 Burleigh Street WC2E 7PX

Website: joeallen.co.uk

5 Sucre

Ideal for The Palladium, Piccadilly Theatre, The Criterion

This Soho restaurant specialises in Argentinean flavours and dishes cooked over an open fire. It has recently launched a set menu for punters grabbing a meal, before or after a West End show. On the menu, there’s small plates of the likes of aged cheddar, chilli and onion empanada; steak tartare, preserved lemon and plantain chips; and lamb shoulder, carrots and salsa verde; or wild mushroom paella with hedgerow garlic for mains.

Pre-theatre service: Sunday to Thursday 5pm-6.30pm; 10pm onwards

Price: two-courses £29; three-courses £34

Address: 47b Great Marlborough Street, W1F 7JP

Website: sucrerestaurant.com

6 Bocca Di Lupo

Ideal for the Apollo, the Lyric, the Sondheim

Loved for plating up hearty regional Italian dishes, the kitchen not only makes its own pasta, but its bread, salumi and gelati as well. The Roman Workers Lunch is available until 6pm, however, the restaurant is also open for post-theatre reservations too. Here’s the place to try artichoke and ricotta ravioli with marjoram, pine nuts and brown butter; pappardelle with wild venison stracotto; or grilled polenta with morels.

Pre-theatre service: Monday to Saturday last reservation 10.45pm; Sunday 515pm-9.30pm; Set menu available until 6pm

Price: Roman Workers Set Menu  £17.50 for starter, main and salad +£10 for dessert, a glass of wine and coffee

Address: 12 Archer Street W1D 7BB

Website: boccadilupo.com

7 SUSHISAMBA

Ideal for Theatre Royal, Aldwych Theatre, Duchess Theatre

Dine on Japanese and South American fusion dishes in a fabulously maximalist setting. Blending Japanese cuisine with Brazilian and Peruvian, tuck into the likes of pork belly anticuchos with butterscotch miso and perivian corn; a selection of samba rolls, and large plates of teriyaki poussin with yuzu kosho and Japanese egg mayo or plantain moqueca with okra coconut milk, dende oil and truffle fried rice. 

Pre-theatre service: Monday to Friday 3pm-6pm

Price: two-course £28; three-courses £32

Address: 35 The Market Building WC2E 8RF

Website: sushisamba.com

8 Wild Honey St James

Ideal for Her Majesty’s Theatre, Theatre Royal Haymarket, the Harold Pinter Theatre and Wyndham’s Theatre

Recently earning a Michelin star, Wild Honey St James’ Early Supper Menu includes dishes created by classic French techniques and seasonal produce. Feast on the likes of Shetland Isle mussels with blood orange and sea purslane; celeriac veloute with chanterelles and pear; and slow-cooked ox cheek with winter vegetables, red wine and parsley sauce.

Pre-theatre service: Wednesday to Saturday, 5pm-6:45pm

Price: three-courses £35

Address: 8 Pall Mall, SW1Y 5NG

Website: wildhoneystjames.co.uk

9 Cinnamon Bazaar

Ideal for Adelphi Theatre, Vaudeville Theatre, the Lyceum, the Duchess

Part of the accoladed Cinnamon Collection group, Cinnamon Bazaar serves vibrant and fragrant Indian dishes that pay tribute to global influences.On the set dinner menu, you’ve got tandoori paneer tikka with coriander chutney; Indo-Chinese chicken wings in a homemade chilli sauce, as well as kokim crusted sea bream fillet with masala mash, a lamb rogan josh shepherd’s pie and stir-fried baby aubergine.

Pre-theatre service: Daily, 5pm-6.30pm & 9.30pm-late

Price: two-courses for £21; three-courses £24 and each menu comes with Bazaar’s Festive Punch

Address: 28 Maiden Lane Covent Garden WC2E 7JS

Website: cinnamon-bazaar.com

10 Chinatown

Ideal for Magic Mike Live, the Apollo, the Sondheim, the Lyric

There are plenty of spots in Chinatown to grab a quick, delicious feed before heading off to see a show. Baozilnn (multiple locations) has an extensive menu offering northern Chinese street food, covering noodle, bun and rice-based dishes as well as dumplings and dim sum. Also in Chinatown, Bun House on Lisle Street has an array of light and fluffy buns to eat, as well as dumplings and a short menu of Chinese sharing plates that are bound to hit the spot before or after a show.

Website: baoziinn.com; bun.house

11 Frenchie, Covent Garden

Ideal for the Adelphi, Lyceum and Wyndham theatres

The Frenchie team have cultivated the perfect dining experience to get you ready for a night of theatre, and the restaurant's luxurious dishes are available as both pre and post-theatre menus. Starters include smoked sea bream carpaccio, and burrata with heritage beetroot, navel orange and cumin, while for mains, you’ve got the likes of confit pork belly with turnips, lovage and cider; or truffle sabayon agnolotti, buckwheat, onion chutney and Comtébroth. 

Pre-theatre service: Wednesday to Sunday 5.30pm-6pm

Price: two-courses £32; three-courses £37

Address:16 Henrietta Street Covent Garden WC2E 8QH

Website: frenchiecoventgarden.com

12 The Savoy Grill

Ideal for the Adelphi, the Vaudeville, theLyceum

For an evening drenched in elegance, start off your night off at Gordon Ramsay’s The Savoy Grill, which is also open for post-show meals. Serving classic and refined European and French cuisine, savour dishes such as celeriac veloute or chicken liver and foie gras parfait for starters and feast on BBQ pork belly or Loch Duart salmon with confit fennel and St Austell Bay mussels for your main meal.

Pre-theatre service: Monday to Saturday 5pm-12am

Address: Savoy Hotel, Strand WC2R 0EU

Website: gordonramsayrestaurants.com

13 Pivot, Covent Garden

Ideal for the Adelphi, Lyceum and Wyndham theatres

On the third floor of Grade II listed 3 Henrietta Street, Pivot is a stones’s throw from Theatreland. Scottish Chef Mark Greenaway heads up the kitchen and his three-course pre-theatre menu showcases fine European cuisine and ingredients - think elevated comfort dishes boasting flavours of the land and sea, prepared simply but elegantly.

Pre-theatre service: Tuesday to Thursday 5pm-6.30pm

Cost: three-courses £28

Address: First Floor – 3 Henrietta Street, Covent Garden WC2E 8LU

Website: markgreenaway.com

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