St John

British Restaurant in The City
St John image

9 / 10 from 1 review
26 St. John Street
The City
020 3301 8069
The City
Nearest Station
0.14 miles
Opening Summary
Monday to Friday: Midday - 15.00, Monday - Saturday: 18.00 - 23.00, Sunday: 13.00 - 15.30
Restaurant Facilities

Disabled Facilities

Children Welcome

Credit Cards Accepted

Booking Advisable

Marrow on toast? Never have the insides of chunky bones both looked and tasted so appealing. MMmmm, bones.

All In London

There’s never been a better time for nose to tail eating in the capital, and St. John is one of the city’s best restaurants for meat lovers. They’re no flash in the pan mind, as Trevor Gulliver and Fergus Henderson opened their first eatery together in 1994. Since then they’ve been awarded a Michelin star (in 2009) and opened successive restaurants in Spitalfields and the West End.

To give you an example of the kind of simple, meat-oriented food they specialise in, the menu includes braised squirrel with bacon, pigeon with radishes, and lamb tongues with anchovy.

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All In London Review

Commit to the menu and go all out on nose to tail.

Review Image
One thing that is easy to forget about St. John is how informal and fun it can be in both the restaurant and the bar at its original Clerkenwell location. Despite the excellent quality of the food and the service, there is never anything like the stuffiness of some fine-dining outfits – and nose to tail or not, this is some fine dining.

The huge height of the atrium, the evidence of former industrial use in every corner and the utilitarian chic of the staff outfits gives St. John that hard to place chic appeal that seems to follow Fergus Henderson wherever he goes – we think it all starts with his glasses. Sat in front of the bar – we leave the restaurant for another occasion – we’re struck by the range of people that St. John attracts. Clerkenwell is a mishmash of industry these days and the bar here seems to attract them all. The appeal is that you can sample fine wine (bought in batches from small producers), good beer (Meantime takes over the taps on this occasion) and some gastronomically creative concoction that you won’t find elsewhere.

We eat the sunflower salad, ox liver and walnut and the famous Welsh rarebit, which is spoken highly of whenever St. John is brought up, although not quite as highly as the bone marrow. We can see why. The rich, thick molten mess of cheese, Worcester sauce and big-flavoured bread is an excellent bar snack to counter the pale ales on the side. The sunflower salad is something altogether daintier and reminds us of the St. John reputation for gastro invention, while the ox liver and walnut is a sweet, iron punch that almost outdoes the rarebit.

Turn up at 6pm on the dot for your best chance of getting a table in the bar or book ahead for the restaurant. The nose to tail phenomenon cultivated by St. John clearly remains popular and after our most recent visit here we’re reminded why.

Reviewed by T.A.O anonymously
Published on Oct 20, 2015

In The News

The All in One Ultimate Restaurant List: St. John's signature recipe

Their roast bone marrow and parsley salad has been replicated around the world

The All In One Ultimate Restaurant List Interview: Fergus Henderson

One of London’s Top 100 Restaurants 2013

All In London talks to Fergus Henderson

We chat to Fergus Henderson from St John

Best For

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The St. John restaurant group is synonymous with nose to tail eating, therefore things like grilled ox heart, pheasant and trotter pie, and bone marrow salad come as standard on their menus. The flagship restaurant in Smithfields has the most meaty options.

Things to Try

Ox tongue for lunch picture

Ox tongue for lunch

Add something different to your plate but trying out the menu at St. John’s Restaurant in Clerkenwell.
Read more

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