Summer in London is one of those wonderful things – a rare glimpse of the sun and everybody gets alfresco fever! The parks are full, the shorts are on and every pub garden is packed. The Resident has put together a list of 55 of the best rooftop bars and terraces for outdoor grazing and cocktails
Lead image: Pergola Paddington
The City & central LONDON’S TOP TERRACES
1 The Happenstance, Paternoster Square
If you’re looking for an Insta-worthy terrace, The Happenstance on Paternoster Square has a beautiful botanical alfresco terrace overlooking St Paul’s Cathedral. Vibrant floral displays and gin-credible botanical cocktails are the order of the day. The terrace has sunny bits and shady bits, so you can duck for cover should the sun get too hot!
10 Paternoster Square EC4M 7DX; drakeandmorgan.co.uk
2 Roof Fest London at The Gardening Society, John Lewis
Capitalising on our love of a good festival, John Lewis & Partners is championing live entertainment, music, comedy, street food, cocktails and more up on its popular rooftop terrace this summer. Roof Fest London is Oxford Street’s first festival in the sky – an immersive world of boho chic with live music on the Caravan stage (yes, it’s an actual caravan!), Filipino food from Bong Bongs Manila Kanteen (formerly BBQ Dreamz), and summer cocktails from Background Bars. Groups of up to 10 can book one of the three intimate dens.
300 Oxford Street W1C 1DX; johnlewis.com
3 Dalloway Terrace, Bloomsbury
Dalloway Terrace is rocking a tropical paradise vibe this year, adorned with the unique flora of Sri Lanka. Taking inspiration from The Village in the Jungle, a novel by Leonard Woolf, the idyllic space is a wild jungle oasis of silk foliage stems, tropical ferns, orchids, passion flower and the giant iconic leaves of the banana plant. The menu features a smoked jackfruit salad and Sri Lankan tofu curry, as well as an afternoon tea with a Sri Lankan twist, plus a breakfast and weekend brunch offering.
16-22 Great Russell Street, Bloomsbury WC1B 3NN; dallowayterrace.com
4 Sky Pod Bar at Sky Garden, the City
It’s not alfresco, but the naturally ventilated Sky Pod Bar feels alfresco! Located 35-floors up at Sky Garden, it’s a great spot to take in the city from upon high, with views on one side the lush greenery of the impressive indoor gardens on the other. Bookings are recommended to visit Sky Pod Bar but walk-ins are welcome from 6.15pm on weekdays and 9.15pm on weekends, space allowing. Note that Sky Garden is a naturally-ventilated space, so you’re advised to wrap up on chillier days.
1 Garden Walk EC3M 8AF; skygarden.london
5 Coppa Club, Tower Hill
It’ll be out with the winter igloos and in with something a little more summery at Coppa Club’s famous riverside pods soon. Last year’s Paradise Pods were kitted out with palm trees and hanging lanterns, forming part of a tropical beach resort with an outdoor bar that you enter via a bamboo walkway. The super-Instagrammable pods, which offer knock-out views of London’s iconic Tower Bridge, HMS Belfast and The Shard, are open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and are perfect for a lazy weekend brunch. Do book ahead as they’re very popular.
Coppa Club, 3 Three Quays Walk, Lower Thames Street EC3R 6AH; coppaclub.co.uk
6 Jin Bo Law, Aldgate
East London hot-spot Jin Bo Law, which has a rooftop bar boasting panoramic views of the London skyline, has launched a spring cocktail menu offering a new selection of Asian-inspired cocktails. The stylish bar on the 14th floor of the Dorsett City Hotel has aligned its new tipples with its Chinese heritage and influences, with cocktails such as the Chinese Rose (Hennessy whisky, hibiscus flowers, lemon, liquorice and five-spice honey), Eye of the Buddha (Citrussy spring flavours featuring yuzu juice, Prosecco, Bacardi White and Yuzushu sake), and Mandariňa (a fruity burst of flavours, with FAIR Kumquat Liqueur, Plum Sake, Lime and Monkey Shoulder Whisky).
14th Floor Dorsett City, 9 Aldgate High Street EC3N 1AH; jinbolaw.co.uk
7 Savage Garden at DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel London – Tower of London
This all-day bar and cocktail lounge on the top floor of the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel London – Tower of London boasts a brilliant 360-degree vista of the city, taking in the Tower of London, The Shard, The Gherkin and St Paul’s Cathedral. As well as a south-facing gin terrace, there’s an all-seasons terrace with retractable roof. As well as epic weekend brunches, Savage Gardens shakes up some pretty theatrical cocktails, fiercely executed by mixologist Andre Cavalheiro (formerly of Caprice Holdings) and served up in intriguing glassware. The Flambard Colada (Havana Club 3YORum, pineapple, cucumber and champagne) comes with our seal of approval, and the Punk Rock Fashioned will knock your socks off.
Floor 12, 7 Pepys Street EC3N 4AF; savagegarden.co.uk
8 The Somerset House Terrace with San Miguel, the Strand
The Somerset House Terrace with San Miguel launched on 29 March 2019 – getting in there early for alfresco season. As well as the tapas-style food offering and live music, speciality beers like San Miguel Selecta and San Miguel Gluten Free, you can also check out the exclusive San Miguel Tap Station. The unique innovation serves five blended specialty beers inspired by the brand’s journey around the world, from the floral hops of Hong Kong to the caramel notes of Munich. The terrace at Somerset House is in a great spot for alfresco drinks overlooking the Thames.
Somerset House, Strand WC2R 1LA; somersethouse.org.uk
9 aqua kyoto & aqua nueva, Soho
Sitting side-by-side just off Oxford Street, aqua kyoto and aqua nueva offer you two different glorious rooftop terrace options for summer. Contemporary Spanish restaurant aqua nueva is collaborated with Veuve Clicquot Champagne last summer to create a colourful floral terrace, while aqua kyoto collaborated with Tanqueray Lovage to create a rooftop terrace that blended elements of Japanese and English gardens. Bring on the 2019 collaborations…
5th Floor, 240 Regent Street (entrance 30 Argyll Street) W1B 3BR; aquanueva.co.uk / aquakyoto.co.uk
10 SushiSamba, the City
One of the coolest restaurants in town, SushiSamba offers a unique blend of Japanese, Brazilian and Peruvian cuisine, music and design. Located on the 38th and 39th floors of the Heron Tower, it has one of the highest outdoor dining terraces in Europe, offering unparalleled 360-degree views of the City. The indoor-outdoor elements featured throughout the space, most notably, the designed structural orange tree on the west terrace.
110 Bishopsgate EC2N 4AY; sushisamba.com
11 Yauatcha, the City
Overlooking Broadgate Circle, Yauatcha’s two terraces, with powder blue seating and blooming pink cherry blossom trees, are the perfect post-work hangout. Every Thursday throughout summer, City Nights will celebrate the warmer weather with cocktails, wine and complimentary dim sum served from 5.30pm until 7.30pm and a DJ playing throughout the evening. An exclusive summer tasting menu is also available on the terrace or in the restaurant, offering a glass of wine or a cocktail, steamed and fried dim sum and a wok dish, followed by Yauatcha’s signature macarons (£34).
Broadgate Circle EC2M 2QS; yauatcha.com
12 Serpentine Bar and Kitchen, Hyde Park
When the sun comes out, Londoners take to the parks. The Serpentine Bar and Kitchen is in the middle of Hyde Park, right next to the Serpentine Lake and the views are spectacular. Not only does it offer clear views the swans and boats, but it is also a great spot for people watching – picnic makers, rollerbladers and dog walkers alike. There’s a Gin Bar, great cocktails a hot dog BBQ, a wood fire pizza oven and a whole range of British classics to tuck into.
Serpentine Road, Hyde Park W2 2UH; benugo.com
13 Coq d’Argent, the City
When work’s out, the City decamps to Coq d’Argent to drink and/or dine. Most head straight to the rooftop garden for cocktails, where the grass and privet hedges are neatly trimmed, the wisteria blows in the breeze and London’s skyscrapers sprawl before you on the horizon. The grill menu is served at lunch time (everything from oysters to sirloin steak from 11.30am-3pm), while bar snacks are served in the evening (everything from calamari to charcuterie from 5.30pm-11pm). At weekends, try Le Grand Déjeuner Menu, available every Saturday and Sunday from 12pm-4pm.
No.1 Poultry EC2R 8EJ; coqdargent.co.uk
14 alto by San Carlo at Selfridges
alto by San Carlo on the rooftop at Selfridges offers a day-to-night menu of seasonal Italian dishes made using only the finest ingredients. Expect spectacular seafood and an expertly curated wine list in a beautiful Italian garden setting. If you just fancy a drink, the alfresco rooftop next door is a lovely summer spot high above Oxford Street. Last year it was the Selfridges Peroni Ambra Roof Terrace – what will it be this year? Enter via the express lift in Fragrance on G.
400 Oxford Street W1A 1AB; selfridges.com
15 The Nyetimber Secret Garden at Rosewood London, Holborn
From 31 May 2019, The Terrace in the Rosewood London’s iconic courtyard will be transformed by award-winning landscape designer Luciano Giubbilei into The Nyetimber Secret Garden at Rosewood London. In partnership with pioneering English sparkling wine producers, Nyetimber, the immersive experience will allow you to spend the summer sipping sparkling wine beneath colourful wisteria while dining alfresco with seasonal lunch and dinner menus created by Executive Head Chef Calum Franklin. Running from 31 May until 29 September from 10am-11pm daily.
252 High Holborn WC1V 7EN; rosewoodhotels.com
16 The Terrace Grill & Bar at Le Meridien Piccadilly
The Terrace Grill & Bar at Le Meridien Piccadilly has both indoor and terrace seating – one of the only outdoor spaces on Piccadilly. Last summer, Le Meridien Piccadilly partnered with its sister hotel Le Meirdien Nice to create a French Riviera pop-up bar inspired by the 70s, decked out with a promenade lined with parasols, palm trees and deck chairs, as well as a traditional village square complete with petanque. Let’s hope it makes a return.
21 Piccadilly W1J 0BH; terracegrillandbar.com
17 Trishna, Marylebone
Trishna has collaborated with Tanqueray Gin and the Rare Tea Company to pay tribute to the historic Punjabi kite flying festival, Basant, which signifies the start of spring. The show-stopping installation will be on display until the end of May 2019, complete with exclusive cocktails to match. Take a journey through the Indian sub-continent’s famous tea and botanical gardens The Tea Garden Collection. The five cocktails blend a selection of cold-brew teas to create both alcoholic and non-alcohol combinations.
15-17 Blandford Street, Marylebone W1U 3DG; trishnalondon.com
WEST LONDON’S TOP TERRACES
18 Pergola Paddington
Pergola Paddington returns as a sunny summery paradise on 2 May 2019. The roof is coming off, there’s alfresco seating for 850 diners, as well as bookable daybeds and DJs will be playing summer tunes all weekend. There’s a brand-new bottomless brunch on Sundays and four new foodie establishments: Babek Brothers, serving kebabs and halloumi fries; Honi Poké, delivering fresh bowls; spicy wonton dumplings from An Choi; and Smash Patty, a new burger concept from the guys behind Patty & Bun. Open Wednesday to Sunday, the two floors of this vibrant space will be the perfect summer spot.
5 Kingdom Street, Paddington Central W2 6PY; pergolalondon.com
19 The Ivy Chelsea Garden, Chelsea
Since The Ivy Chelsea opened it has become a firm sunny favourite. The beautifully decorated terrace and orangery is as stylish as a garden could get, and being part of The Ivy family, you’re in safe hands when it comes to food and drink. Cocktails and an all-day British menu are available in the alfresco space, which is adorned with fountains, climbing ivy and beautiful antique furniture abound, this the kind of place you will want to spend several hours.
197 King’s Road, Chelsea SW3 5EQ; theivychelseagarden.com
20 No 197 Chiswick Fire Station, Chiswick
No 197 Chiswick Fire Station is a destination bar that pays homage to the history and community at the centre of the building and a bar that aims to feel like a home to the locals. Enjoy the courtyard with friends and let the lovely weather provide the perfect backdrop for relaxed eating and drinking.
197 Chiswick High Road W4 2DR; no197chiswickfirestation.com
21 The Darcie & May Green Barges, Paddington
The floating restaurant and bar barges, Darcie & May Green, are right outside Paddington Station on the Grand Union Canal. The floating pieces of art, designed exclusively by the ‘godfather’ of British pop art, Sir Peter Blake, provide the perfect setting for canal side dining, serving Aussie brunch, healthy lunch and relaxing dinners. The two boats share a combined 50 metre upper deck overlooking the Grand Union Canal and have been transformed with the addition of rooftops gardens.
Sheldon Square W2 6DS; daisygreenfood.com
22 The Terrace at Lowndes Bar & Kitchen, Belgravia
The Lowndes Bar & Kitchen Terrace at Jumeirah Lowndes Hotel in Belgravia is celebrating the opening of the Frida Kahlo: Making Her Self Up exhibition at the V&A this summer terrace season. In addition to the popular BBQ-style menu, a separate Mexican-themed food and cocktail section will be offered to guests as an ode to Frida. Dishes include fish tacos in soft corn tortillas with crumbed fillet of lemon sole, avocado and lime cilantro cream, as well as Mexican-inspired chicken egg rolls with jalapeno tomato sauce.
21 Lowndes Street, Belgravia SW1X 9ES; lowndesdining.co.uk
The south bank, bankside
& albert embankment’s TOP TERRACES
23 The BBQ Club at Southbank Centre
Jimmy Garcia’s acclaimed BBQ Club riverside dining experience returns this summer with a new concept – Patch & Picnic. Soak-up the rays in your own riverside patch by the Southbank Centre, playing classic British outdoor games such as croquet and mini-golf, while indulging in a special BBQ Club hamper packed with alfresco goodies. The split-level riverside summer eatery features a walk-up BBQ Bar serving grilled halloumi burgers and the like, while the BBQ Club rooftop restaurant featuring an interactive seven-course tasting menu. Launching on Saturday 3 May 2019.
78 Waterloo Bridge SE1 9PX; jimmyspopup.com
24 The Terrace at OXO Tower Bar, South Bank
Eight floors up at the OXO Tower Bar is a fantastic Thames-side terrace serving cocktails and bar snacks. Summertime means sassy collaborations, and last year it was the 1800 Tequila Terrace, where you could sip on 1800 cocktails while taking in the panoramic London skyline views. What will 2019 bring?
Barge House Street, South Bank SE1 9PH; harveynichols.com
25 The Ivy, Tower Bridge
The Ivy Tower Bridge offers accessible, sophisticated all-day dining with a Parisian-style alfresco terrace that seats 50 and directly overlooks the Thames and Tower Bridge. The modern British menu is all-encompassing including breakfast, elevenses, lunch, afternoon tea, weekend brunch, light snacks, cocktails and dinner. Should the weather turn, you can retreat indoors and still enjoy the same lovely views through the floor-to-ceiling windows.
One Tower Bridge SE1 2AA; theivytowerbridge.com
26 12th Knot at Sea Containers, South Bank
The terrace at 12th Knot, formerly Rumpus Room, doesn’t have a lot of seats, so it can get a little standing-room-only side, but the views are worth it (kudos, if you bag the egg chair). Should your legs tire, head indoors and check out the beautiful inky blue and violet interiors. Located on the 12th floor of the Thamesside hotel, the bright, verdant riverside rooftop bar has lush greenery, plush sofas and comfortable lounge spaces indoors and British-American inspired cocktails. There’s live music on Wednesdays and DJs Thursday to Saturday. Find your way to the rooftop bar via the neon signs. Open till 1am Tues-Weds and 2am Thurs-Sat.
20 Upper Ground, South Bank SE1 9PD; seacontainerslondon.com
27 Midsummer Terrace at Sea Containers
Sea Containers restaurant at Mondrian London collaborated with Champagne Laurent-Perrier for the 2018 year’s Midsummer Terrace pop-up. The floral, Thamesside terrace, with views over the river to St Pauls, was adorned with soft pink wildflowers and dusky pink furnishings. Alongside the relaxed drinking and dining area, the terrace also hosted a separate Laurent-Perrier Champagne Bar. What will it be this year?
20 Upper Ground, South Bank SE1 9PD; seacontainersrestaurant.com
28 Mezemiso at Crowne Plaza London – Albert Embankment
Perched on the 15th floor of the Crowne Plaza London – Albert Embankment and blessed with panoramic views over the River Thames and the Houses of Parliament, Mezemiso opened in January 2019, bringing together Japanese & Lebanese cuisine. Mezemiso’s Cigar and Shisha Terrace occupies one of the most desirable spots in the restaurant. With an extensive cigar and shisha menu to match the unparalleled Westminster view, the 20-seat outdoor terrace is a great spot to try Mezemiso’s signature cocktails.
10-11 Albert Embankment SE1 7TP; crowneplazalondonalbertembankment.co.uk
SOUTH LONDON’S TOP TERRACES
29 Frank’s Cafe, Peckham
Frank’s Café is the hottest spot south of the river come summer. Coming back for summer 2019 on 31 May, its the country’s coolest multi-storey car park with cocktails (make it a Negroni or Aperol Spritz), especially since Peckham Levels sprang to life below, with yet more street food and boozing opportunities. Up top you can still enjoy excellent sharing plates like buffalo chicken wings with blue cheese crème fraiche and smoked paprika and parmesan-roasted corn on the cob while taking in those amazing views over London, and now they have a brunch menu too (served 11am-3pm Sat-Sun). The whole of Shoreditch tends to descend on this place so the bar queue is usually huge.
Peckham multi-storey car park, 95a Rye Lane, Peckham SE15 4ST; frankscafe.org.uk
30 Street Feast at Hawker House, Canada Water
Street Feast has been keeping the population of East London fed and watered for a few years now with Dinorama in Shoreditch and Dalston Yard. The opening of the Model Market at Lewisham sent south-east Londoners into raptures, and then along came Hawker House in Canada Water and the Giant Robot at Canary Wharf. Originally opened as a warehouse venue to get us through the dark, dreary winter months, in 2016 it expanded into the great outdoors, and is now home to a huge courtyard festival of food and craft beer for those in striking distance of Canada Water station on the Overground or Jubilee.
Canada Street, Canada Water SE16 7PJ; streetfeast.com
31 Pop Brixton
Pop Brixton has shed its winter roof ready for the summer season. South London’s go-to alfresco drinking and dining destination has an ever-growing selection of street food vendors and bars serving everything from gyoza to jerk chicken, the venue is perfect to while away the summertime. Look out for special events, from yoga brunches to vintage kilo sales, film clubs, family discos and big music nights.
49 Brixton Station Road, Brixton SW9 8PQ; popbrixton.org
32 Southbank Centre Queen Elizabeth Hall Roof Garden
Most South Bank amblers don’t even know it’s there, but The Queen Elizabeth Hall Roof Garden, designed by the Eden Project and maintained by Grounded Ecotherapy gardeners, is an excellent find. With plenty of leafy greenery including a wildflower meadow, mini allotments and a woodland garden, alongside awesome riverside views and a cafe bar run by Company of Cooks, it’s one a great spot to catch up with family and friends. Open until late September from 10am-10pm daily, depending on the weather. The terrace outside the Royal Festival Hall is a great summer spot for a quick drink too, with a pop-up bar serving the basics. It gets pretty crowded though.
Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road SE1 8XX; southbankcentre.co.uk
33 Craft London, Greenwich Peninsula
Craft London, just opposite the O2 Arena on Greenwich Peninsula, is a vision of modernity created by chef Stevie Parle in collaboration with Tom Dixon. This summer, Oxley Gin, the cold-distilled London gin brand has taken over Craft’s impressive rooftop terrace bar, offering a range of bespoke gin serves over ice with fresh, homemade ingredients and garnishes foraged by the Craft London team from their neighbouring garden. Ours is the Oxley Spritz, made with Oxley Gin, Rouge, Honey Syrup and Prosecco. All priced at £10, the drinks will be served alongside bar snacks from Craft London’s renowned all-British menu.
Peninsula Square, Greenwich Peninsula SE10 0SQ; craft-london.co.uk
34 The Sail Loft, Greenwich
Peaceful waterside dining is a pretty rare find in London, but you’ll find it at The Sail Loft in Greenwich. This Fuller’s pub serves up a brilliant brunch, with the likes of black pudding hash with fried hen’s egg, plus roasted field mushroom, spinach, butternut squash and sourdough on the menu. If the weather turns, head indoors where you can still enjoy a view of the Thames from the floor-to-ceiling glass windows.
11 Victoria Parade Greenwich SE10 9FR; sailloftgreenwich.co.uk
35 Rivington Botanical Gin Garden, Greenwich
The Rivington’s Gin Garden has gone from summer staple to year-round winner, but each season brings with it a transformation. This summer it brings a burst of colour, fragrance and greenery to the terrace, transforming it into a botanical gin garden. The space is covered by a beautiful tree canopy, filled with hanging vines and warm lighting, making it the ideal location to try out one of the 220 different varieties of gin behind the bar. Alongside the extensive gin menu, there are also plenty of expertly mixed cocktails.
178 Greenwich High Road SE10 8NN; rivingtongreenwich.co.uk
36 Cinnamon Kitchen, Battersea
Cinnamon Kitchen is bringing fire and spice to Battersea Power Station with minimalist industrial décor and a large outdoor terrace with sweeping views of the Thames. The restaurant serves contemporary Indian dishes, many unique to Battersea, like the Clove smoked Lamb Rump with Fennel and nutmeg sauce. Enjoy imaginative cocktails by award-winning mixologist Tony Conigliaro like The Coconut Kir and Assam Manhattan, and bar bites inspired by the dishes found on the Mumbai Jaipur Pink City Express train route.
Circus West Village, 2 Arches Lane SW11 8AB; cinnamon-kitchen.com
37 No 29 Power Station West, Battersea
Go explore Battersea’s new neighbourhood at Circus West Village, by the iconic Battersea Power Station. And while you’re there, be sure to make a stop at No 29 Power Station West, part of the neighbourhood bar group, Darwin & Wallace. The riverside terrace is sporting a new pergola, decorated delicately with the green buds of spring. Dine on seasonal, locally sourced food, craft beers including Five Points Pale and cocktails including house favourites Pear Bellini and Passionfruit Caipirinha. Breakfast and brunch favourites include sourdough bruschetta with roast tomatoes, spinach, avocado and crispy bacon, or ricotta pancakes with seasonal fruit. Plus, the new Battersea Power Station River Bus Pier puts the venue within 15 minutes of Embankment Pier on the Thames Clipper.
29 Circus West, Battersea Power Station SW8 4NN; no29powerstationwest.co.uk
38 The Lido Café, Herne Hill
The Lido Café in Brockwell Park is one of our favourite spots in south London when the sun is out. A good-sized terrace faces the swimmers and the park’s leafy trees beyond, transporting you away from London and into a more rural environment. Modern-British food is served all-day, making this a great spot for breakfast, lunch or dinner, as well as a morning coffee and a few glasses of wine come the evening (or afternoon).
Dulwich Road, Brockwell Lido, Herne Hill SE24 0PA; thelidocafe.co.uk
EAST LONDON’S TOP TERRACES
39 Skylight at Tobacco Dock, Wapping
Skylight at Tobacco Dock will be kicking off another spectacular sun-filled season on 3rd May 2018. Skylight became one of London’s most popular and imaginative rooftop destinations after its smashing launch in 2017 and is now a firm fixture on any summer hotlist. This year sees the return of Skylight’s urban lawn club setting and with it, a whole host of new additions, improvements and surprises. Soaring above London’s most unique event venue, Tobacco Dock in Wapping, Skylight boasts three floors of bars, street food, live entertainment, croquet, pétanque, screens, DJs and an unrivalled view of London’s iconic skyline. Whether battling it out on the croquet lawn, cheering on a World Cup game or Wimbledon match on the big screen, chilling with a post-work spritz or soaking up a no-filter sunset, Skylight has a summer experience for everyone. Thu-Fri 5pm–11pm, Sat-Sun 12pm–11pm.
Wapping Lane, Wapping E1W 2SF; skylightlondon.com
40 Roka, Canary Wharf
Roka Canary Wharf’s tasting menu is the stuff of dreams. As is the à la carte… try one of Roka’s legendary sushi and sashimi platters and hot dishes inspired by Japanese and Asian cuisine. The black miso cod is divine and you simply must sample the wagyu nigiri, it’s to die for. The sake sommelier will make sure you have something suitable to wash it down with. The terrace is a fantastic spot to dine come summer, overlooking Canada Square Park, you take in the bright lights of London’s sleekest office towers while soaking up the sounds of the Canary Wharf Summer Concerts.
4 Park Pavilion, 40 Canada Square E14 5FW; rokarestaurant.com
41 The Water Poet, Shoreditch
We’re not the only ones to think that The Water Poet’s beer garden is among the best in London, and with ivy-covered walls, weathered benches and a buzzing atmosphere it’s easy to see why. And we haven’t even mentioned the menu and drinks list yet! This quirky pub has something for everyone – just make sure you don’t get lost wandering through all their many rooms trying to find the deck.
9-11 Folgate Street E1 6BX; waterpoet.co.uk
42 Boundary Rooftop, Shoreditch
The Boundary rooftop combines grape producing vines and wild herbs to create a rooftop garden space that is open all year thanks to the weatherproof pergola and open fire. In terms of eating, you can expect Mediterranean hors-d’oeuvres, bar snacks and steaks off the grill. When the weather’s good there may be a wait on tables, and it doesn’t take bookings on small tables so either get together a group and plan ahead or expect to join the well-dressed queue of punters. The views over the roofs of Shoreditch are worth it, though.
2-4 Boundary Street, Shoreditch E2 7DD; boundary.london
43 The Culpeper, Spitalfields
Having grown most of its own herbs and vegetables on the roof for some time now, Culpeper is no stranger to making the most of its urban environment. This summer its team will be opening their rooftop garden to the public and it is set to be a great spot. Already an excellent place for the list of natural wines and the menu offerings, such as pancetta with snails, wild garlic and Jerusalem artichokes, the fact that you will soon be able to eat and drink these things in a garden above the city only makes things better.
40 Commercial Street E1 6LP; theculpeper.com
44 Dishoom, Shoreditch
The ever-popular Dishoom, modelled on an old Irani café in Bombay, has a great verandah area perfect for sunlight, reading a book off the shelves or working your way through the delicious menu. The retractable walls and roof make this area a safe bet all year round and in any weather, but this place is popular so get in early – we suggest going for breakfast, the bacon naans are a favourite.
7 Boundary Street E2 7JE; dishoom.com
45 Angler, Moorgate
Michelin-starred restaurant Angler, in the South Place Hotel, not only serves up some of the best seafood in London but also has a lovely, elegant outdoor terrace. Rattan chairs and green shrubs create a Provençal style in the middle of the city, so with a setting like that, it only seems right to crack into the rosé.
South Place Hotel, 3 South Place EC2M 2AF; anglerrestaurant.com
46 Dalston Roof Park
Described as an ‘urban utopian oasis’ with views of the London skyline, we are excited for its re-opening this summer. Membership for the season is £5, which grants you unlimited entry into the Roof Park’s events – film screenings, music, street food and more. Its Facebook page will keep you up to date with what it’s got planned.
The Print House, 18-22 Ashwin Street E8 3DL; bootstrapcompany.co.uk
47 Boisdale Garden Terrace, Canary Wharf
Last summer, Boisdale of Canary Wharf transformed its popular outdoor space into a 130-metre Jamaica Garden Terrace. Sponsored by the Jamaica Tourist Board and Grace Foods, the Boisdale Jamaica Garden Terrace was decked out as rain-forest fringed shores of the famous parish of Portland, Jamaica, with lush tropical plants and cascading palm trees. Imbibe the Jamaican rum punch was specially created for the occasion by Boisdale. The Jamaica Garden Terrace was also home to a rich, tasty selection of meats from the Jamaican Jerk BBQ grill including pork, chicken and specials such as lobster and shrimp. We are eager to see what this summer will bring for Boisdale of Canary Wharf.
Cabot Place, Canary Wharf E14 4QT; boisdale.co.uk
48 The Merchant, Canary Wharf
The Merchant has established itself as a place to enjoy great fresh food, cask ales, wines, eclectic beers and spirits, and simply unwind. The Merchant makes the most of Canary Wharf’s tranquil dockside terraces with 90 alfresco covers and heated parasols, all overlooking the North Quay. It’s a great spot to escape the hustle and bustle of Canary Wharf.
25-27 Fisherman’s Walk, Canary Wharf E14 4DH; teamerchantcanarywharf.co.uk
49 Pitch, Stratford
Stratford is cool now. The Olympics have packed up and moved on, the sporting legacy is questionable, but the canals and outdoor spaces speak for themselves. Pitch on Bridge Terrace off Stratford High Street has just opened ready for the Easter weekend, offering some of London’s best street food (gourmet hot dogs, souvlaki, Venezuelan food, vegan dishes), colourful, design-led (and weather-proofed!) spaces to hang out in, a craft-focused bar, Sunday DJ brunches, plus a schedule of activities and events from themed outdoor film screenings to evening classes and party nights. It’ll be a great spot to watch the World Cup, too. Open from Fri-Sun in April, Thu-Sun in May and every day in June and July. Open till autumn.
2 Bridge Terrace, Stratford E15 3FF; pitchstratford.com
50 The Duke of Richmond, Hackney
This summer Tom Oldroyd is opening The Duke of Richmond a restaurant and pub. The pub will open seven days a week, with reservations taken for the dining room. Both the pub and dining room menus will have a strong French accent, whilst using the very best of seasonal British produce. With outdoor seating on the terrace, this is sure to be the ideal East London summer drinking spot.
316 Queensbridge Road E8 3NH; thedukeofrichmond.com
NORTH LONDON’s TOP TERRACES
51 Granary Square Brasserie, King’s Cross
Granary Square Brasserie has partnered with Fever-Tree to transform its terrace into a Physic Garden this summer. The installation takes inspiration from traditional physic gardens, and the practices of growing and blending herbs, to combine delicate botanicals with gin to create innovative new G&T serves for visitors to try this summer. And with over 70 covers, it’s one of London’s biggest terraces, and what’s more, the gin dream team will be hosting an event series in the restaurant’s private dining room. Guests at the House of Apothecary will blend their own gin to take home from a range of aromatic distillates in homage to the apothecaries of old, while enjoying a three-course dinner.
Granary Square, 1-3 Stable Street, King’s Cross N1C 4AB; granarysquarebrasserie.com
52 The Lord Palmerston, Tufnell Park
After an extensive renovation, The Lord Palmerston re-opens its doors; with a new look that combines the historic beauty of the pub with fresh and contemporary features. This neighbourhood favourite celebrates the best things in life: hearty British fare and London’s finest craft beer, all enjoyed in a relaxing environment. The traditional pub has been given a new lease of life with an all-weather terrace complete with finer, cosy features. This is the perfect place to enjoy a spot of al fresco dining or relaxed afternoon drinks.
33 Dartmouth Park Hill, Tufnell Park NW5 1HU; thelordpalmerston.co.uk
54 The Castle, Islington
This gastro-pub at the top of Pentonville Road offers a great menu and drinks list to be enjoyed on its spacious roof terrace – possibly the finest roof terrace in all of Angel. A relaxing retreat in trendy, bustling Islington, The Castle is great come rain or shine, with comfy sofas indoors, real ales, great beers, a good wine list (chosen by their master of wine, no less). There’s sport on the tele, a daily changing specials menu and a pub quiz on Tuesdays, which is only £2 entry.
54 Pentonville Road, Islington N1 9HF; geronimo-inns.co.uk
54 The Modern Pantry, Clerkenwell
This Clerkenwell staple has something for just about any time of the day – a healthy breakfast, a decadent brunch, lunch with friends, afternoon tea, dinner, or a bite to eat after the theatre. The Modern Pantry’s alfresco terrace in St John’s Square seats 32 people and is a great place to watch the world go by. There’s also a small bar serving an eclectic selection of wines and unusual cocktails to accompany your food.
47-48 Saint John’s Square, Clerkenwell EC1V 4JJ; themodernpantry.co.uk
55 Big Chill, King’s Cross
Kitsch and colourful furniture decks out this rooftop bar, which claims to bring a taste of Shoreditch to King’s Cross. Atop a Victorian pub with a quirky interior, this rooftop bar is an excellent place for an elevated drink. The menu ranges from craft beer, cider and wine to cocktails like the Big Tea Party – Absolut, Beefeater, El Jimador, Appleton white, Triple sec, apple juice, lemon juice, bitters and blackcurrant jam. It does food, too, and brunch for the morning after.
257-259 Pentonville Road, King’s Cross N1 9NL; bigchillbar.com