The best restaurants in Harpenden

No matter what type of cuisine you’re in the mood for, what occasion you are celebrating or what your budget is, you’re sure to find somewhere special to eat out in Harpenden.

Written by

Sheila Frampton

There’s so much on offer but we’ve put together a guide to some of our favourite places to eat in Harpenden. 

Of course, we all have different tastes and the places on this list are our personal favourites but if you have any recommendations or comments, we’d be delighted to receive them.


Where can I find stylish dining in a character setting in Harpenden?

Lussmans Harpenden, Leyton Road, Harpenden

Situated in an 18th century former coach house overlooking Leyton Green this restaurant is stylish but with a delightful rural ‘feel’ and plenty of character. 

On the ground floor, there’s  space for 46 diners and, when the weather permits, there’s alfresco dining in the charming walled garden.

For a special occasion or family gathering, you can enjoy private dining in a lovely first floor room which seats 8 to 10.

The menus change with the seasons, there’s a locals set menu with two or three courses and there are plenty of vegetarian options. 

Dining at Lussmans, you’ll be supporting sustainability.  Since 2002, the restaurant has been pioneering sustainable dining, championing local sourcing, promoting organic, high-welfare farming and serving MSC certified fish. The restaurant runs on green energy and recycles 100% of waste.

Visit the Lussmanns website

Where’s a great place to meet friends for tapas in Harpenden?

Bar Azita Mediterranean Grill & Tapas Bar, Harding Parade, Harpenden

Tapas is a great way to enjoy a dining experience with friends or family and Bar Azita brings a taste of the Mediterranean to Harpenden with Spanish and Greek food and a fabulous range of tapas.   

On the lunch menu, cold tapas dishes include feta stuffed red peppers, Olivieh, Tzatziki, Houmous, Greek Kalamata and more – all served with pitta. 

The hot tapas menu features Lamb Kofta, Kalamari, Sardines and Pork Pinchitos. Equally popular is The Gyro – grilled Greek pitta bread filled with salad, a lemon tahini dressing and a choice of fillings chicken and tzatziki, lamb and feta, halloumi and badamjansalata or falafel and houmous. 

In addition to the tapas on the A La Carte menu is a mouth-watering selection of meat dishes including Rib Eye Steak and Lamb Souvlaki.

Visit the Bar Azita website

Where can I find authentic Italian cuisine?

Zaza Harpenden, High Street, Harpenden

Located on the High Street, Zaza is a delightful, authentically Italian restaurant. 

Many of the ingredients are sourced directly from producers in Italy and every ingredient used, including the virgin olive oil, Italian cheese and plum tomatoes, is of the highest quality.   

Zaza offers a range of specials including a two-course lunch special and, on a Tuesday evening, there’s a  special featuring an antipasti followed by any pasta, pizza or main course dish with a bottle of wine per person.

Visit the Zaza website
A photo of pizza at Prezzo

Where can I find the best Thai food in Harpenden?

The Giggling Squid, Amenbury Lane, Harpenden

The best Thai food is always to be found at The Giggling Squid.

In Harpenden, this popular chain restaurant is located about 10 minutes’ walk from the station and boasts rich Thai cuisine with ingredients from land and sea. 

Each dish, from the famous Salt & Pepper Squid to Sticky Chicken showcases the best Thai ingredients and there are plenty of gluten free options.

Visit The Giggling Squid website

If I want traditional British cuisine, all-day food or a Sunday roast in Harpenden, where do I go? 

The Fox, Luton Road, Kinsbourne Green, Harpenden

The Fox has an all-day menu with light bites, comforting classics, starters, sandwiches, hearty main courses, burgers, steaks and rotisserie - so whether you’re out for a lazy lunch, meeting friends for a bit to eat or heading out for the evening, The Fox is the perfect place. 

If you’d rather dine at home but don’t want to cook, you can order your meals and collect them from The Fox to enjoy in the privacy of your own home.   

When you’re celebrating a special event, The Fox is happy to cater for parties – and you can sit beside the fire for your celebratory drinks before heading to the sophisticated dining room.

Visit The Fox's website
Curry, rice and naan bread

The George of Harpenden, High Street, Harpenden

This is another great eaterie where you’re able to enjoy breakfast, lunch or dinner. 

Breakfast starts from 10 am, brunch until noon and, from noon, there’s a selection of familiar favourites on the main menu including steaks, burgers, roasts and freshly prepared, wood-fired pizzas.

The cosy lounge at The George is a lovely place to meet friends for morning coffee or you can sample crafted cocktails alfresco style on summer evenings. 

There’s a takeaway service – you simply order online and collect at a time that suits you.

Visit The George's website

Where can I find a delicious breakfast or brunch in Harpenden?

Lots of restaurants and pubs in Harpenden serve breakfast and brunch including the Fox and The George, but if you’d like to try something different, head to Okka Café or the Silver Palate.

Okka Café & Restaurant, High Street, Harpenden

Okka is a great place for breakfast, brunch or lunch with a family-run atmosphere and friendly staff.

There’s a good range of options – many with a Turkish twist including a Mediterranean breakfast, Turkish sausage and scrambled eggs, fresh tomatoes with mint and onions.

Visit the Okka Facebook Page
A photo of Wagamama in Bracknell
A photo of soft tacos at Las Iguanas

The Silver Palate, 3 Vaughan Road, Harpenden

This restaurant serves breakfast until noon every day of the week. 

Choose a full English breakfast, an Italian breakfast with Luganica sausage, pancetta, San Marzano tomatoes, mushrooms and eggs or perhaps a vegetarian breakfast or salmon and eggs, smashed avocado or pancakes.

The Silver Palate doesn’t take reservations, so all you need to do is turn up.  If you’re too late for breakfast or brunch, there’s an excellent lunch menu or, between 11.00 am and 3.30 pm from Monday to Friday and between 5 pm and 8 pm on Friday and Saturday evenings, you can take advantage of the Silver Palate’s takeaway service and enjoy the food at home.   

You can also shop at The Silver Palate’s deli at 7 Vaughan Road and buy the ingredients to create your own delicious meals.

Visit The Silver Palate's website

The best fast food in Harpenden

Godfreys, 41 High Street, Harpenden

Fish & chips is one of our ‘national’ fast food dishes and, in Harpenden, nowhere is better than Godfrey’s. 

Located on the High Street, Godfreys is always busy.  All food is cooked to order and anyone who is gluten free will be delighted to learn that every Monday after 4 pm, Godfreys in Harpenden offer gluten free fish and chips.  These are cooked in a separate fryer to the regular fish and chips with fresh oil, separate utensils and a separate serving area to avoid cross-contamination. 

For those who are sensitive rather than allergic to gluten, gluten free batter can be requested but these products are not cooked in separate oil.  Pulled pork, mushy peas, minted peas and tartare sauce are also gluten free.

Visit the Godfrey's website

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