The (nearly) top 20 places to eat for fussy eaters

If you're a fussy eater, you’ll know that eating out can often feel like the Wild West. 

Filmore & Union, York

Whether you’re vegan, vegetarian, dairy, gluten or nut free, here’s our list of the best 20 places to eat. They’re cool too. Not a sandal wearing hippy in sight, we promise. Enjoy.

1. Nopi - London. My trusted media sources say this is the place where London’s super skinny fashion pack go. Owned by chef du jour Yotam Ottolenghi, dishes offer bold, sunny flavours, plenty of herbs and are by default just the thing for fussy foodies. 

2. Wholefoods - London. From California’s sunshine coast to London’s High Street Ken. Now going down a storm in Soho too. Try here if you want choice a plenty for you or your fussy eating friends. 

3. Baker and Spice - London. Even if you’re gluten free this chain ticks the boxes with its fresh salads and local, seasonal and organic sourcing ethos.  

4. Filmore & Union - York. The food’s so good here you’d never know they’re catering for nut free, low sugar and other intolerances. Now open in York Station, Harrogate and Wetherby, Yorkshire, UK.

5. The Kitchin - Leith, Edinburgh. Handling seasonal cooking from ‘nature to plate’, celebrity chef Tom Kitchin and his wife Michaela offer healthy dishes at Michelin star quality.

6. Leon - London, various. With restaurants in Carnaby St, Ludgate Circus and King’s Cross on the list, the Leon team’s philosophy that food should ‘taste good and do you good’ means this place is a fussy eater’s paradise. Try the Baked Falafel and Tangy Carrot Rice Box, or the Gluten Free Pecan Pie is a personal favourite.  

7. Wahaca - London, various. When Masterchef winner Thomasina Miers exploded onto our screens with her fresh take on Mexican street food, the fussy eaters among us were ready for fiesta. Plenty of vegetarian and dairy free options with zing.

Wahaca, London

8. Sesame - Leeds Uni and St Paul’s St, Leeds. This Leeds institution is a favourite with the office and student sets alike for its wholesome, healthy food. Try freshly made smoothies, the owner’s dad’s home baked cakes or the legendary Falafels on a Thursday.

9. Otto - Notting Hill, London. Anyone with a gluten intolerance will understand how tricky it is to negotiate an Italian meal. The chefs at Otto come to our rescue with their ‘made without gluten’ pizza and cornmeal pizza crusts - low in wheat to satisfy those circular cravings. 

10. Zuma - London, Hong Kong, Istanbul, Dubai, Bangkok. This stalwart of the celebrity scene has been creating healthy food in London’s Knightsbridge for years. Its informal Japanese style of eating and drinking give the place a buzzing atmosphere. Also try its sister restaurant Roka on Charlotte St or Canary Wharf for Rotabayaki (fireside) nosh.

Zuma Knightsbridge, London

11. Dirt Candy - NYC. When this popped up recently on celeb chef Ching He Huang’s Healthy Eats programme, it just had to make it on to the list. The carrot steamed buns look unbelievably good. Vegetables at their best and then some. 

12. Hakkasan - London. No fussy eating list would be complete without mention to Alan Yau, founder of Hakkasan, Yauatcha, Busaba Eathai and Wagamama. He’s an expert at creating stylish restaurants with freshly cooked food that packs a real flavour punch. Because of the Asian influence it’s easy to be fussy in them too.

13. Claridges - London. If you’re craving a real English high tea, make for the Art Deco luxury surroundings of Claridges, W1. An English institution, Claridges started catering for gluten free tea and cakes a few years ago. Always a step ahead of the curve.

14. Food for Friends - Brighton. Brighton's original vegetarian place, it's been drawing in the coastal crowds for years.

15. The Wallace by Peyton and Byrne - London W1. If you crave culture with your cuisine, head down to the wondrous Wallace Collection for some excellent vegetarian choices on its a la carte menu. Also try the Inn the Park sister restaurant for one of the most peaceful meals you’ll find in central London. 

Inn the Park, London

16. Bread & Circus - Sydney. Lots of dairy free, wholefood options at this sweet Sydney cafe.

17. Cafe Gratitude - Los Angeles. Thank you to Gwyneth Paltrow's Goop for highlighting this one. Healthy food to the max in laid back California style. 100% organic, 100% vegan, local fare which is free of refined sugar, flour, and additives.

18. Bar Burrito - Manchester, Leeds, Sheffield. Looking for a fast, fun and fresh take on Mexican food? Look no further. Try the veggie Burritos and Burrito bowls for a gluten free option. 

19. Your choice!

20. Your choice! Where do you go for your fussy food? The last two places are your choice and the places with the most mentions make the official list! 

Vote now by commenting below, or on twitter by mentioning @fussy_eaters #top20fussyeats

Entries close March 15th 2013. 

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  1. Thank you Lissy, love your blog too, let me know if you have any for the list near you?

  2. Rather preferring the company of "sandal-wearing hippies" I'd personally avoid-like-the-plague ANY outfit where "London’s super skinny fashion pack go"... Having said that, "Food For Friends" in Brighton is unpretentious but cool and the food's delicious - always. Brighton also Boasts "Bill's" and "Terre à Terre": lucky people.

    1. Bill's in Brighton, what an excellent tip. Food amazing. Just love sitting surrounded by great fresh produce...or is that the one in Hove?

  3. thank you Anonymous, must try Bill's and Terre a Terre too.


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