Neighborhood gems can be hard to find in London, which has so many nooks and crannies. The typical joint is a fish & chips shop, but St. John defies that stereotype. Located in Smithfield, St. John has become the ultimate nose-to-tail restaurant, led by Fergus Henderson (who essentially wrote the book on the subject). The all-white backdrop serves as a neutral canvas for his bold flavors and colorful, in-your-face ingredients and preparations. Definitely save room for their simple desserts. One in particular I remember was a shortbread cookie paired with 23 year-old Lagavulin scotch.
26 St. John Street, London, EC1M 4AY; 020 7251 0848