Diwali, the Hindu festival of light, is a prominent annual celebration symbolising the victory of light over darkness. Each year, it falls somewhere between September and November, with the main festival day in 2023 falling on 12 November. People all over the world illuminate their homes, workplaces, and other important locations with lamps and candles and gather with friends and family to bond over delicious feasts. Many of London's Indian restaurants offer special menus or limited-time offers during Diwali. Here are our top picks for Diwali celebrations in London in 2023.
Where to celebrate Diwali in London
In this guide
The best restaurants for Diwali in London
- Kachori – Baby's first Diwali
- Dishoom – Festive specials at iconic Indian restaurant
- Honey & Co. – Diwali supper club
- Jikoni – A different Diwali menu
- Gunpowder – Diwali roast dinner
- Empire Empire – They'll take you to the candy shop
- The Cinnamon Collection – Festive feasting
- Gymkhana – Festival of lights and stars
- Trishna – Contemporary sharing feast
- Brigadiers – Bring your whole squad
The best restaurants for Diwali in London
Baby's first Diwali
Kachori in Elephant & Castle is a newcomer to London's Indian dining scene, having only opened in the summer. They serve dishes from different regions of India, adding contemporary culinary flair. Kachori's chefs have put together a special three-course meal for Diwaliwith well-loved dishes such as Dili Butter Masala and Dal Makhani. The menu is available for both lunch and dinner.
Festive specials at iconic Indian restaurant
For many, Indian food in London is synonymous with Dishoom. This acclaimed group of Bombay-style eateries has multiple locations around London and is always a good choice for celebrating the Hindu festival of light, with a wide choice of dishes to share and socialise over. This year, the Dishoom restaurants are offering a pair of Diwali specials – Beetroot Halwa, a creamy, slow-cooked pudding made with beetroot and carrot, sprinkled with chopped nuts, and served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, and the refreshing Thandai cooler made with almonds, cardamom, fennel, black pepper, and milk.
Diwali supper club
Honey & Co. might be a bastion of Middle Eastern rather than Indian dining in London, but they pay their respects on Diwali nonetheless. At their recently opened Honey & Co. Daily café, they're hosting a supper club with celebrated chef, author, and broadcaster Romy Gill. She'll serve a vegetarian feast with dishes like spiced okra, daal, and kheer rice pudding for dessert.
A different Diwali menu
Jikoni is a well-known Asian fusion restaurant by chef Ravinder Bhogal, celebrating maternal figures and family recipes in a warm, welcoming space with soft fabrics, wicker chairs, and colourful cushions. The cosy setting makes it an excellent choice for a Diwali feast with a difference – the restaurant highlights dishes such as Crispy Aubergine with Sichuan Caramel and Sticky Garlic Rice, Kale Chaat, and Wild Mushrooms on Toast with Curry Hollandaise as ideal for celebrating the festival of light.
Diwali roast dinner
Gunpowder, another stalwart London Indian restaurant group, is taking advantage of the fact the main day of Diwali falls on a Sunday this year and combining some of our favourite things – roast dinners and Indian food. At their Tower Bridge and Soho branches, they're serving a Diwali Sunday roast with your choice of a half or whole lamb rack, one topping, and three sides. The Tower Bridge location even carves it tableside.
They'll take you to the candy shop
Gunpowder sibling Empire Empire is going a different route for its first Diwali celebration. The disco-inspired Notting Hill restaurant is replacing its dessert menu with a mithai pop-up shop. The delightful assortment of Indian sweets includes the likes of Ghevar Eton Mess Tart, Bounty Bsan Ladoo, Baked Gulab Jamun Cheesecake, and more.
Acclaimed Indian chef Vivek Singh's Cinnamon Collection restaurants are known as some of the top spots for authentic Indian cuisine in London. For the Hindu festival of light in 2023, they've curated multiple-course Diwali feasts that are tailor-made for sharing. They include favourites such as Tandoori Chicken Malai Tikka, Toddy Shop Pepper Fry, Kashmiri-style Lamb Roganjosh, and more. The menu varies from location to location.
Festival of lights and stars
When it comes to Indian food in London, it doesn't get much better than Gymkhana – the Michelin star is proof of that. They're running a special tasting menu for Diwali, with vegetarian and non-vegetarian options. You can choose from dishes such as Chicken Butter Masala, Kid Goat Methi Keema, and Achari Paneer Tikka, with wine pairings also available.
Contemporary sharing feast
Trishna is another Michelin-starred Indian restaurant, excelling in serving modern Indian cuisine in a contemporary setting. Trishna's Diwali tasting menus feature six courses with optional wine pairing. You can start with an assortment of papads and chutneys before digging into dishes such as Partridge Pepper Fry, Tandoori Lamb Chop, Dorset Brown Crab, or Hariyali Bream. Round off your meal with one of the desserts, including a Chocolate Chikki.
Bring your whole squad
Brigadiers is a grill restaurant and sports bar in The City that's inspired by the military mess halls of India. Classy yet casual, it's a top choice for a group Diwali outing, with a menu to match. The Diwali feast at Brigadiers features vegetarian and non-vegetarian options and includes dishes such as Maharaja Lamb Biryani, Wild Mushroom & Truffle Biryani, and Gulab Jamun.