The foodie’s guide to London’s best sustainable fish restaurants
Marine ecologists have warned that environmentally destructive fishing methods, such as bottom trawling and bycatch, are destroying our seabed and endangering our fish. If we don’t protect our oceans and support those who source their seafood responsibly, certain species face extinction – and your favourite fish dinner, might just become a thing of the past.
No catches, just our angle on the London’s best fish restaurants…
Japanese Brazilian isn’t a culinary fusion you often hear of — and, it turns out, that’s to the detriment of the London restaurant scene. Sushi with a tropical twist translates into unique dishes like Rio Bananal (a.k.a breaded salmon, banana and cream cheese rolls) which even non-foodies will be thinking about for weeks after their visit. The food is not only different and delicious, it ticks all the usual boxes: ‘good quality, healthy, rich in nutrients, fast and easy’. Not satisfied with the sustainable fish restaurant rep, they were the first chain to obtain a Friend Of The Sea certification meaning you can enjoy your sashimi and poké bowls pretty much quilt-free. The staff are knowledgeable, friendly and full of recommendations if, understandably, when met with banana sushi and breaded avocado on a menu, you’re a touch indecisive. The interior is quirky but on-point — think palm trees and parrots — making it the perfect place for a relaxed dinner and a few Caipirinha Graviola’s (a soursop caipirinha made with their exclusive Brazilian cachaça Mais Amor). Though the food leaves you feeling just the right side of full, with desserts like cheese cake and churros, you’ll probably overdo it.
J Sheekey’s has been serving high-quality seafood to London’s elite since 1895. Originally opened as an oyster bar, this stunning 1920s Art Deco style restaurant oozes sophistication. Some of the classic British seafood dishes include oysters, pickled Arctic herrings, blackended mackerel, fish pie and the Cornish fish stew.
THE FISH CLUB
A hidden gem in our restaurant-filled metropolis. On arrival guests can head to the wet fish counter, select their fish and preferred cooking method – be that grilled, baked or fried. Try the hot smoked sprats, battered coley with chips, and the grilled sardines with garlic, lemon and parsley.
Cornish seaside chic in the heart of the city with a twice-daily changing menu – options depend on what’s available and sustainable, and head chef, Christian Edwardson, will only serve seafood caught around the British Isles. Enjoy the roasted Cornish hake with langoustine bisque, or the shellfish platter with glass of Champagne and a side order of skinny fries.
Soho & Borough
‘What a great place to bring a date’ has been said about this place. Informal, yet stylish, this buzzy restaurant has the ideal combination of casual, bistro-style bar area, with a more formal dining room option for dinner. Good oysters are aplenty and small seafood tapas-sized bites can be enjoyed at the bar or outside in the courtyard, along with a long list of wines and cocktails.
Despite being part of a big chain, Loch Fyne prides itself on being at the forefront of environmental initiatives and source much of its catch from the west coast of Scotland. Try grilled mackerel fillet, Scottish rope-grown mussels with garlic and pan-fried Loch Fyne Scottish kippers.
Read more: The foodie’s guide to the best brunch in London
THE GOOD FISH GUIDE
Ask: When visiting a restaurant, ask the manager if they have a sustainability policy. Their knowledge of where the fish comes from will indicate how committed they are to responsibly sourcing fish and shellfish.
Avoid: For a list of which fish are currently endangered check out www.goodfishguide.org.
At present, it recommends we avoid blue fin tuna, skate, wild-caught sea bass, European eel, Atlantic halibut, wild Atlantic salmon, shark, warm water wild prawns and Atlantic cod caught in