Our favourite venues for dinner and a dance

Full stomach? Now let's hit the floor...

Don't blame it on the moonlight.
Don't blame it on the good times.
Blame it on the boogie.

That's the line to take when you've just barfed up your chow mein after ill-advisedly taking to the dance floor post-scoffing.

But sometimes, as Gloria Estefan prophetically put it, the rhythm is gonna get ya. And if it does, you're buggered. You're just gonna have to take to the dance floor: consequences be damned.

So if you like the idea of having a dance after dinner without having to leave the restaurant take a gander at the below venues which combine great food with a dancefloor, and while they are not aimed at the hardcore clubber, they are sure to provide hours of light-hearted fun.




Floripa London
91 - 93 Great Eastern Street EC2A 3HZ
Region: Shoreditch
Nearest Station: Old Street (0.1 miles)

AIL Says: Brazilian specialties like feijoada and pão de queijo are on offer at this Shoreditch bar and restaurant. They also have live music and club nights, featuring Latin music, hip hop, dubstep and funk. On Sundays they even do a Brazilian-inspired roast; choose from chicken, picanha (regarded as the best cut of beef in Brazil) or the Brazil nut roast.

  • OUR REVIEW 8/10
  • USERS 7/10
Momo Restaurant
25-27 Heddon Street W1B 4BH
Region: Mayfair
Nearest Station: Oxford Circus (0.2 miles)

AIL Says: Enjoy traditional North African dishes like wood pigeon pastilla, stuffed aubergines and of course, tagine before heading downstairs for a dance. The restaurant’s bar won the Evening Standard ‘Bar of the Year’ award in 1997, and after 15 years Momo remains one of London’s most renowned restaurants.

  • MOROCCAN
  • USERS 8/10
Sketch Lecture Room & Library
9 Conduit Street W1S 2XG
Region: Mayfair
Nearest Station: Oxford Circus (0.1 miles)

AIL Says: The jaw-dropping décor alone at Sketch makes it worth a visit; in fact the building was once used as Christian Dior’s atelier. Run by Mourad Mazouz, the man behind Momo, it received its first Michelin star in 2005. There are three separate dining rooms ranging from the expensive to the more affordable, and DJs play in the Gallery till the early hours.

  • FRENCH
  • 8/100
  • USERS 9/10
Pizza East
56 Shoreditch High Street E1 6JJ
Region: Shoreditch
Nearest Station: Bethnal Green

AIL Says: As befitting a venture taking over the Tea Building, once known for host memorable club nights, the space beneath the main restaurant, Concrete, has music and dancing most nights of the week, although it’s hip hop and pop rather than house music these days. Pizza fans cannot miss the delicious offerings like rabbit and potato, puzzone and garlic.

  • PIZZERIA
  • OUR REVIEW 8/10
Gilgamesh
Chalk Farm Road NW1 8AH
Region: Camden
Nearest Station: Camden Town (0.2 miles)

AIL Says: Gilgamesh could well be the most epic restaurant in London. The food, courtesy of Ian Pengelley, is Pan-Asian and remarkably good for such look-at-me surroundings. There is a suitably showy dancefloor upstairs to carry on partying till late into the night.

  • ASIAN
  • OUR REVIEW 7/10
  • USERS 5/10
Cargo
83 Rivington Street EC2A 3AY
Region: The City
Nearest Station: Bethnal Green (0.1 miles)

AIL Says: Cargo’s multipurpose venue combines live bands, DJs, cocktails and a restaurant that serves filling Mediterranean-inspired platters and posh burgers. Not as cutting-edge as it perhaps thinks it is, but they do host up and coming bands as well as dancing till 3am at weekends.

  • OUR REVIEW 7/10
  • USERS 4/10
Circus
27-29 Endell Street WC2H 9BA
Region: Covent Garden
Nearest Station: Covent Garden (0.1 miles)

AIL Says: Circus is a restaurant, bar and cabaret space all in one. Watch the performers while you eat –if you’re seated at the banqueting table you’ll be very close to them indeed. After dinner,take to the makeshift dancefloor.

  • USERS 2/10
Mahiki
1 Dover Street W1S 4LD
Region: Mayfair
Nearest Station: Green Park

AIL Says: Beloved of the A-list and the royals, Polynesian-inspired nightclub Mahiki is also where Carl Clarke’s (previously of God Save the Clam and Disco Bistro) first permanent restaurant is located. Rock Lobsta serves fish and chips, ceviche and lobster rolls.

  • USERS 8/10
Levant Bar & Restaurant
76 Jason Court W1U 1JJ
Region: Marylebone
Nearest Station: Bond Street

AIL Says: If the thought of belly dancers sashaying around your table makes the blood rush to your cheeks, you might find Levant a tad uncomfortable, for they will persist until you agree to get up for a dance. This opulent eatery has a DJ playing Eastern music till 3am, and the Middle Eastern food’s not bad either, having been awarded the AA Rosette Award in 2010 and 2011.

  • RESTAURANT & BAR
  • OUR REVIEW 8/10
  • USERS 5/10
Cafe El Paso
350-354 Old Street EC1V 9NQ
Region: The City
Nearest Station: Bethnal Green (0.2 miles)

AIL Says: For laidback eating, drinking and dancing in Shoreditch there is El Paso. The food is Mexican-inspired and cheap, cocktails and drinks are also modestly priced. The basement has DJs playing everything from hip hop to cheesy rock anthems depending when you turn up, and while it’s a bit of a last-minute option (entry is free and there’s never a queue) it’s a decent night out on a budget.

  • MEXICAN/TEX MEX
  • OUR REVIEW 7/10
  • USERS 8/10


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