Places of Restaurants in the city of London
A real institution, the Soho branch at Balans has become a hotspot for visitors from around the world. The vibe is relaxed and friendly, the food is well priced but it’s the location – bang in the middle of happening Old Compton Street - that really attracts the crowd.
This super-friendly queer café was probably serving up hot dishes when most of you were still in nappies. It’s been a mainstay of London’s gay scene for as long as anyone can remember and it remains so because it’s a good, no-nonsense kind of place. With a canteen-style atmosphere and basic vegetarian menu, it’s the place to meet up with friends, catch a bite before a night on the town, or even to indulge in one of their fab breakfasts.
A cosy and very popular restaurant in St Giles Street, the First Out Café claims to be the first gay café in the West End. As well as serving delicious vegetarian food, First Out also hosts exhibitions and party nights.
Originally a small oyster bar, the restaurant grew in size and reputation through the 1950s and 1960s, as it embraced the adjoining properties and attracted the discerning fashionable diners of the day. The restaurant was subsequently owned by the Scott’s Group until 1993 when it declined into bankruptcy and disrepair. It was rescued and relaunched by Caprice Holdings in 1998.