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It’s said that the earls of Warwick, an affluent English noble family, once owned the sprawling land of Earl’s Court. This peaceful district in the west remains palpably regal today, with charming gardens and Victorian mansions. It’s also evolved into a place brimming with food fit for a king or queen.
Around Earl’s Court tube station, restaurants serve a tantalising range of global cuisine, from Moroccan and Italian to Thai and Sri Lankan. Pubs and independent coffee shops are abundant too. Here are some of the best places to eat and drink in SW5 and a tad beyond.
Where to eat breakfast and brunch in Earl’s Court
Stella Coffee is a solid bet if you wake up feeling extra hungry. A few minutes’ stroll from Earl’s Court station, this snuggly joint does all-time favourites like eggs on toast and granola with yoghurt and fruits, as well as an extensive list of bagel options. The bacon melt bagel — with streaky bacon, gooey mozzarella and fresh tomatoes — is our go-to. It opens as early as 6am on weekdays.
Nearby is Café North Lodge, a cheerful little breakfast nook and pit-stop, inside the historic Brompton Cemetery. Besides its oven-fresh pastries, people adore its al fresco dining area. Try the sourdough topped with smashed avocado, crumbled feta and crunchy toasted seeds.
If a full English gets you into gear, consider adding French-Italian eatery Café Du Coin to your itinerary. Its traditional fry-up has a meat-free counterpart, replacing smoky pork sausage with a vegetarian banger. The café’s version of shakshuka, a North African and Middle Eastern breakfast staple, features two poached eggs swimming in a tangy, deep-red sauce.
Further west from Earl’s Court, and just within West Kensington, is Bonjour Brioche, a quaint neighbourhood bakery known for breakfast and brunch. A fail-proof option is the eggs benedict made with sweet honey ham, pillowy brioche and free-range organic eggs. The place is also stacked with cakes and tarts, for a proper breakfast treat.
Where to get lunch in Earl’s Court
The long stretch of Earl’s Court Road might overwhelm you at first — eating places dotted left and right. Walk south to find Indian restaurant Flora Indica; its bright-green door and blue façade are eye-catching indicators that you’ve reached Old Brompton Road. The restaurant pays tribute to well-loved Indian classics through large sharing plates of fragrant and punchy dishes. The rogan josh is a standout, with Suffolk lamb shoulder slow-braised for hours to reveal a succulent fork-tender finish. Daily lunch sets start at £15 for a hefty two-course meal.
Meanwhile, Theo’s Simple Italian on Barkston Gardens Road is an all-day diner that serves fresh home-style Italian dishes like the rich papardelle al ragu, with homemade ribbon pasta and slow-cooked beef smothered in a red wine and San Marzano tomato sauce.
A gem for authentic Bangkok street food is Addie’s Thai Café. It’s also another good option for a fast lunch out in Earl’s Court, serving a gamut of Thai flavours such as stir-fried noodles, soups, curries, and rice dishes.
Jollibee ticks the box for straight-up Filipino comfort food (if you've not heard of it before — this fast food chain is HUGE in the Philippines, and has something of a cult following in London too).
Coffee shops in Earl’s Court
Over Under Coffee is a small coffee shop with a cool minimalist aesthetic located at a little side street across Earl’s Court Station. Order any of the espresso drinks made with Colombian beans for an afternoon pick-me-up. If you linger, you'll catch this café turn into a hip cocktail bar from 5.30pm till late.
Near the mini tourist attraction that is Earl’s Court Police Box (a blue telephone kiosk resembling the TARDIS from Doctor Who) is PAUL where you can get your fix of of freshly baked French pastries alongside a dose of robust caffeine. Another Earl’s Court staple, at least for those wanting a quick chocolate and coffee fix, is Brownie Box on Old Brompton Road. Opened in 2011 as a humble family-run cake shop, it’s now rebranded into a full-fledged café-slash-dessert place. Or head back to Stella (see Breakfast).
Restaurant recommendations in Earl’s Court
Couscous Darna’s tawny walls and classic North African ornaments set the mood for traditional Moroccan dishes. The chicken tagine is lovely and zesty, thanks to preserved lemon confit and a secret umami sauce. The namesake dish, couscous darna, with fluffy couscous and lamb shank, is highly recommended too.
For Japanese food that won’t leave a dent on your wallet, head over to Kappa, where fresh sashimi and sushi are particular crowd-pleasers. Byron Proper Burgers is a straightforward option for your fill of classic hamburgers made with 100% grass-fed British beef.
The little alleyway that is Hogarth Place Road hosts a roster of interesting restaurant finds like Siam Secret, a curious Thai place hidden in plain sight. It feels like a speakeasy of sorts but once you find it, a candle-lit garden, where you can dine al fresco, greets you. Crosswise are The Little French Restaurant, a bistro with fancy three-course meals for around £16, and Cave of Lanka, which offers traditional Sri Lankan cuisine bursting with lively flavours.
Bars, pubs and gastropubs in Earl’s Court
It’s no bad thing that there’s an overflow of watering holes in Earl’s Court. But it helps to know where to begin. For the unacquainted, the Troubadour, established in 1954, is one of the oldest pubs in the area and is popular for exhilarating live jazz music from day to night. Musical legends Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, and Elvis Costello have all played here, making the pub a worthy spot for both locals and visitors. Serving a variety of food, including breakfast and bar chow, the historic pub also offers Sunday roasts as well as daily happy hour promos.
The Blackbird is a casual Fuller's ale & pie house named after the blackbird pie in the famous nursery rhyme. Besides serving up craft beers, artisan sodas, and handcrafted meat pies, it doubles as a boutique hotel. Just look for a striking black-painted corner pub along Earl’s Court Road.
The Kings Head, at the foot of Hogarth Place Road, and Courtfield on Earl’s Court Road are also well-known tap joints among the after-work crowd. One of the best bars in Earl’s Court, though, is private dick-themed speakeasy Evans & Peel Detective Agency, which boasts a wide selection of handcrafted cocktails interestingly named 'elixirs' and a curated wine list from all over the world, starting at £28 per bottle.