Glass selects London’s most prestigious pancakes

A favourite date in the diaries of many, Shrove Tuesday gives us all a socially acceptable chance to ditch dining conventions and feast on pancakes before embracing a 40-day fast (or so tradition goes). From savoury crepes to sugar and citrus classics, customisation is king, with the art of mixing, flipping and serving half the fun. Yet for those too kitchen averse to prep pancakes at home, here’s our guide to five London restaurants giving a luxe touch to the humble pancake.

lescargot L’Escargot – spinach and wild mushroom crepe

For the connoisseurs

L’Escargot, Soho

London’s oldest French restaurant L’Escargot has put a seriously luxury spin on Shrove Tuesday this year. With suckling pig, lobster thermidor and spinach and wild mushroom crepes the stars of the show, a trip to this Greek Street institution this week might change the way you view the humble pancake forever.

48 Greek St, London W1;

shotgunPancakes at Shotgun

For the carnivores
Shotgun, Carnaby Street

The delicate art of flipping pancakes means that making a pigs’ ear of Shrove Tuesday is a pretty common occurrence in homes all over the world. Yet at Carnaby Street’s Shotgun BBQ – the brainchild of the team behind Marylebone’s celebrated Lockhart restaurant – the pigs ear becomes the main event, served up alongside delicate pancakes and a sauce that sees savoury and sweet combine to give a pancake day dish with a difference.

26 Kingly Street, London W1


For the East End sophisticates
Blixen, Spitalfields

Since opening last year, Blixen has established itself as one of Spitalfields’ must-visit restaurants; its airy brasserie style and modern menu a welcome addition to east London’s fast-changing food scene. For Shrove Tuesday the Blixen team are laying on pancakes served with smoked trout, dill and crème fraiche, blueberries and whipped mascarpone and – pictured – crispy bacon and maple syrup. So that’s breakfast, lunch and dinner covered then.

65A Brushfield St, London E1;

hoppersHoppers – Sri Lankan in Soho

For the adventurous
Hoppers, Soho

Bringing an authentic take on Sri Lankan dining to Soho, London’s first “hopper” restaurant launched at the end of last year, introducing us all to its eponymous bowl-shaped pancakes that are made from coconut milk and rice flour – with fried egg optional – and served with an array of curries and chutney. Try a spicy twist on Shrove Tuesday and be transported to a place far, far away.

49 Frith St, London W1;

 Pont St BoothA booth at Pont Street

For the sweet-toothed
Pont St, Belgravia

All-day neighbourhood diner Pont St does a fine line in American-style brunches and fresh seafood dishes inspired by the Mediterranean. Yet for Shrove Tuesday head chef Sophie Mitchell has opted for a new addition to the menu. Pull up a chair in the elegant Tara Bernard-designed space and plump for the fluffy spelt and vanilla pancakes with blueberries and maple syrup to celebrate pancake day in style.

20 Chesham Pl, London SW1;

by Ben Olsen

Photo credit: John Carey