From gourmet tapas to towering burgers – by way of sushi, Chinese and vegetarian food – we’ve done our best to lasso together an inventory of Liverpool’s best restaurants. At some we’ve gone nuts for the food, in others it’s all about the venue. So, if you’re looking for the city’s most moreish plates, or simply somewhere to be ‘seen’ whilst eating, this is the guide for you.
Here are our picks
Yes, as the name would suggest, this place is in on the Americana trend – but where else can you eat pulled pork and buffalo wings in the grounds of a former convent? Inside Free State Kitchen it’s pretty tight around the hips, but outside there are wide lawns and picnic tables a-plenty. The food is good, too, with burgers, deli sandwiches and desserts all going down a treat beneath the fairy lights. They let you order takeout, too.
Bacaro elegantly and effortlessly serves up a taste of the Mediterranean – Italian cicchetti plates, to be precise. Which means: herby focaccia, arancini, meat boards and fritto misto (or fried fish). With dusky walls, moody lighting and intimate booths, it’s the perfect place to share some tapas-style dishes, washed down with the Italian classic, Campari. Don’t miss the affogato dessert, too. Why? You’ll see.
Lauded by Jay Rayner as “one of the more intriguing venues I have eaten at for a long while”, Camp & Furnace brings together vintage caravans, towering shrubbery, roaring fires and the biggest public screen in the city all under the roofs of three old warehouses and a coach shed. You guessed it – the place is enormous. It’s big on its foodie events, too, with film-themed dining on Screen Thursdays, a Friday Food Slam and a Saturday Meat Market (cooked up over a huge BBQ). Ergo, one of the coolest places to eat in Liverpool.
Think a pan-Asian menu served up in a 1950s surrounding; visually, HOST feels like an odd mix, but the food there is undeniably on point. This is also one of the top places to rock up to if you’re harbouring complicated dietary requirements – its vegan, dairy and gluten free options are wide ranging. Curry, tempura veg and sea bass make up some of the savouries, while the puddings (such as chocolate and coconut sundae with miso butterscotch sauce) give some classic dishes an exotic twist.
Now here’s a restaurant that’s been serving up Northern Chinese cuisine for over 40 years. Yuet Ben translates to “welcome honoured guest” and treats its patrons well by offering up both expected staples (yes, that means crispy duck), and some more unusual gems. Our wonderful food writer in Liverpool, Christina McDermott, recommends the cold smoked fish and sweet and sour “cherry” chicken if you’re not sure what to pick.