Hackney Restaurants: A Guide to the Best Eateries in the Area

Hackney is a vibrant and trendy area located in East London, and its food scene is no exception. With an abundance of restaurants to choose from, it can be overwhelming to decide where to dine. Luckily, this guide will provide insight into the best restaurants in Hackney, allowing foodies to indulge in the area’s diverse culinary offerings.

The dining scene in Hackney is constantly evolving, with new and exciting dining experiences popping up each month. From trendy brunch spots to upscale dining, there is something for everyone. This guide will explore the top restaurants in Hackney, ensuring that visitors and locals alike can experience the best of what the area has to offer.

Key Takeaways

  • Hackney is a trendy area of London with a diverse food scene.
  • The dining options in Hackney are constantly evolving, with new restaurants opening regularly.
  • This guide provides insight into the best restaurants in Hackney, allowing foodies to indulge in the area’s diverse culinary offerings.

Best Restaurants in Hackney

Cafe Cecilia

Cafe Cecilia is a chic neighbourhood bistro-style restaurant located in Hackney. The head chef, Max Rocha, brings elements of his native Dubliner roots to the streets of East London. One of the restaurant’s worst-kept culinary secrets is their sage and anchovy fritti, which provides a tasty, light tempura with oily, salty, and moreish flavors. Their Guinness Bread starter with creamy butter spread on top, Globe Artichoke and gorgeous Vinaigrette, and the Onglet with the best chips found anywhere and a wonderful peppercorn sauce are also must-try dishes. The restaurant offers outstanding value for what is a fine dining treat.

The Picklery at Little Duck

The Picklery at Little Duck is a fermenting kitchen and wine bar located on Dalston Lane. The menu changes fortnightly to ensure only the finest seasonal ingredients are used in their kitchen. One of the restaurant’s must-try dishes is the Wigmore and pickled radicchio, followed by the Gnudi with Romana courgettes, pecorino, and mint garnish. The restaurant also sells pickled jars that can add a delightful flourish to your home cooking.


Shankeys is a rare fusion restaurant in Homerton that combines the best Irish and Indian tastes to provide diners with an unlikely taste treat. The restaurant’s chaat potatoes, crispy cubes of potato, silky-smooth inside and soaked in a stunning turmeric and poitin butter, are a must-try dish. The restaurant also serves wholesome small plates available for less than a tenner, including their fish tea, a ginger and cardamom-infused cod chowder that is light, flavorsome, and a stunning delight.

Hackney Coterie

Hackney Coterie is a charming wine shop and bakery located in Hackney Downs that doubles as one of the best Hackney restaurants. The restaurant serves lunch on Saturday and dinner Thursday through Saturday with a £20 two-course menu and a third course for an additional £4, making it a great value. The restaurant currently serves some of the finest seafood dishes in East London, with their Monkfish main particularly appetising. Their celeriac, nameko mushroom, and brillat savarin small dish and Pork Katsu are also must-try dishes. For a snack starter, go for the crispy potatoes and crab, two for £6, a top-class delicacy packed full of crunch and flavour.

The Sea, The Sea

The Sea, The Sea is a seafood restaurant located in Haggerston that brings the sexy to East London’s restaurant scene. The restaurant has just 14 seats at the chef’s table, offering a unique opportunity to be close up as you watch Executive Chef Leo Carreira cook your fish. Feeling fancy? You can hire the entire restaurant for a private dining experience like no other with your friends and family while enjoying the best seafood dishes arguably anywhere in London, never mind Hackney!

El Ganso

El Ganso is a beautifully rustic Spanish-influenced restaurant that brings the charm of the streets of Madrid or Sevilla to downtown East London. The traditional Spanish tapas dishes come with a modern spin, including the Salmon tartar and the Huevos Rotos, runny eggs served over fried potatoes, onions, and chorizo. The restaurant is popular with Spanish speaking locals, which helps to give it a further seal of authenticity.


Silo is a restaurant located in a refurbished canalside former industrial space that serves up some of the finest, most elegant dishes in East London. Sustainability and zero waste are the watchwords at Silo, where all food is sourced with the elimination of waste in mind. The restaurant trades directly with farmers using reusable delivery containers and choosing zero-waste ingredients. Any leftover food is deposited for composting, thus closing the fully-sustainable loop. Their 6-course tasting menu is pricey but entirely understandable, £65 per head, and provides diners with an exquisitely presented set of dishes that somehow taste even better than they look.


WAVE stands for We Are Vegan Everything and is the brainchild of best mates Cait and Soph. Their passion for vegan cuisine and minimalist homeware motivated them to set up a comfortable oasis where they can eat and enjoy vegan food that even the most staunch non-vegan will adore. This space is perfect for midweek or weekend lunches for friends that love a long, lingering lunch of veg-based bowls, snacks, and shakes. Their Golden Roasted Salad and roast cauliflower in coronation sauce are must-try dishes, and if you’re there for brunch, pick up a Brekky Bowl, in which the mushrooms thrive with juicy goodness.

Caribbean Kitchen

Caribbean Kitchen is located on the side of Mare Street in South Hackney and

Other Places to Eat in Hackney

Randy’s Wing Bar

Randy’s Wing Bar is a popular spot located in the Olympic Park near the canal in Hackney Wick. They started as a pop-up in East London and have now established a permanent location. The restaurant is known for its mouth-watering chicken wings, which are served by the dozen. The BBQ-sauce-slathered Kansas-style wings and the Korean-style Gangnam wings are highly recommended. The restaurant’s location is perfect for enjoying the summertime rays while lounging on a deckchair on the grassy waterside bank. Randy’s Wing Bar is a must-visit for anyone looking for awesome wings in Hackney.

Temple of Hackney

Temple of Hackney is London’s first vegan chicken shop, catering to the growing meat-free crowd in East London. The restaurant offers a meaty-style vegan substance made from wheat gluten called Seitan, which is a fantastic meat-free alternative to chicken. The restaurant’s atmosphere is similar to traditional chicken shops found on the streets of London, making it a unique experience for diners. The menu includes gluten-free soya nuggets, vegan wings, legs, and a range of vegan sides. Seitan is tougher than tofu and less stringy than chicken, making it a perfect option for non-veggies looking to try something new. Temple of Hackney is a great place to visit for anyone looking for a vegan twist on traditional chicken dishes.

Practical Tips for Exploring Hackney’s Best Restaurants

Hackney is home to a diverse range of restaurants, serving up a variety of cuisines from around the world. To make the most of your culinary experience in Hackney, consider the following practical tips:

  • Plan ahead and make a reservation. Many of the restaurants in Hackney are quite small and popular, so it’s a good idea to book a table in advance to avoid disappointment.
  • Be mindful of dietary restrictions and allergens. While most restaurants offer dishes that cater to special diets, it’s always a good idea to double-check with your server if you have any concerns.
  • Explore the area’s diverse food scene. Hackney is known for its eclectic mix of cuisines, ranging from traditional British fare to international dishes from countries such as Japan, Mexico, and Ethiopia.
  • Take advantage of the area’s excellent transport links. Hackney is well-connected to other parts of London via the London Overground and mainline train services, as well as several bus routes.

By following these practical tips, you can ensure that your dining experience in Hackney is an enjoyable and memorable one.