The Happenstance

4.0
179 reviews
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£25 and under
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British
Top tags:
  • Casual
  • Lunch
  • Brunch
Immerse yourself in a world of curiously good times & happy coincidences at the happenstance. It’s sure to be a welcome addition to your little black book. floor-to-ceiling windows frame views of London’s most iconic landmark, St Paul’s, whilst our sophisticated interior encompasses a striking bar & restaurant, bountiful deli, mixology table & florist. Our glamorous subterranean private dining room or hidden speak easy “the curious treasury awaits. Open all-day, seven days a week, stop by for a drink in the bar & explore the extensive wine list or sample the innovative skinny cocktails. Feeling peckish? work your way through the carefully crafted menu of seasonal & locally sourced cuisine, from breakfast, brunch & lunch right through to dinner as well as late night bites.
What 179 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.0based on recent ratings
3.9
food
3.6
service
3.9
ambience
3.7
value
Noise · Moderate
83% of people would recommend it to a friend
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CM
London
3 reviews
Dined on 9 April 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Good food, pleasant service and fun ambience. Would happily go again.

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O
1 review
Dined on 24 March 2019
Overall 2food 2service 1ambience 2

Waited ages to be served and then food arrived quickly but was disappointing. Tasteless chicken in a tough toast sandwich with a sliver of tomato, chunk of lettuce and a scrape of mayo. Oh well, the chips were nice. Very limited menu with no Sunday lunch option. The service was so slow we had to go and ask for the bill and more drinks - which by then it was too late to enjoy outside on the pretty terrace in that afternoon's beautiful sunshine as we'd hoped.

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DD
1 review
Dined on 7 March 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

Nice venue and decent prices but the food was bland (burgers and onions rings), and the service at a lunchtime was disappointing, with the wrong food coming initially, olives being forgotten as an appetiser and only came when reminded with the main course and it taking about 10 mins to get the bill with my colleagues leaving me to it to get back to meetings. OK for a lunch I suppose but I won't be going back.

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OT
London
3 reviews
Dined on 1 March 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Lovely staff and the food was very nice

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s
London
57 reviews
Dined on 14 February 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 3

They didn’t actually have my booking but it was pretty quiet so it didn’t matter. Good and friendly service. Ok place, good value. Not sure it’s on my must go to list

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h
1 review
Dined on 11 February 2019
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 3

the food was good but there were too few staff so that unless we got up from the table and specifically requested attention no one noticed that we were sitting with no drinks, and then empty plates and no offer of desserts or coffee. A slight pause is obviously acceptable and no one wants to be rushed but we sat for a longtime and the one or two staff who were working had too much to do to be attentive yet a 12.5% service charge was added as a matter of course !

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RR
London
3 reviews
Dined on 18 January 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Very nice spot for a working lunch. Fast service which is good when time is short. I think it's the best place in the area for informal business meetings.

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v
London
1 review
Dined on 10 November 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Booked our work Christmas party after visiting for the first time

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AK
Tokyo
15 reviews
Dined on 2 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I got this restaurant for business lunch around 11:30 am with my customer. Their service and dishes are very good for light business meal. I really recommend this restaurant.

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DT
London
2 reviews
Dined on 27 October 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Last week I left a bad review as we had booked but found the restaurant closed. In response we were invited back yesterday as a guest of the restaurant and they looked after us unimpeccably and we had a wonderful anniversary lunch. As with previous visits the ambiance, food and service were exceptional and we had a great deal of fun. Francesco the relatively new duty manager was an exceptional host and looked after our every need including providing entertainment for us - he is as good a host as we’ve had for some time - anywhere. A small mistake was made last week and Ruadhri and the team have been excellent in rectifying it. If you’ve never been before it’s a great experience and highly recommended.

The Happenstance
Responded on 31 October 2018

Hi David, Thank you for getting in touch. I can only but apologise that you were able to book through Open Table on a day that we were closed. This was personally my mistake as I had not informed Open Table in time. I really do hope that it didn't ruin your day but as a gesture of good will I would like to invite all three of you back in for a complimentary lunch/dinner on us. If you can email me on ruaidhri.obaoill@drake-morgan.co.uk I will arrange this for you. Kind regards, Ruaidhri

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B
London
3 reviews
Dined on 28 September 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

Business lunch. Food was very good. Service was prompt. However, we were sat near to the door and it was very cold with air conditioning. We had to keep our jackets on!

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JT
1 review
Dined on 28 September 2018
Overall 3food 4service 1ambience 3

Service was slow and had to ask a couple of times for drinks. Once ordered food came fairly quick and was good quality

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MS
London
1 review
Dined on 24 September 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Hector (my Great Dane) and I always enjoy it at the Happenstance - the staff are so friendly and it is a really good watering hole right in the middle of St Pauls - great location and good food reasonably priced. Michael Segen

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M
London
18 reviews
Dined on 14 August 2018
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 3

Not too sure if the venu is under staffed or not engaged with the clientele. Really had to make an effort to grasp attention to order the food and to get the bill. If your in a lunch time rush... best avoid!

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BH
London
5 reviews
Dined on 10 August 2018
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 2

Although the food was find and delivered relatively quickly, the restaurant was too noisy for two people to chat over lunch.

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WO
London
2 reviews
Dined on 2 August 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Nice food - a touch pricey for what I had. Good service though.

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M
London
43 reviews
Dined on 25 June 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

We went for a meeting. We wanted drinks. They served drinks. We order. They provided. We were happy. The End.

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DR
1 review
Dined on 18 May 2018
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 4

We were a group of 7. We ordered starters to share - very good. Our main courses took a very long time to arrive. When they did arrive, they were incomplete, 2 people had to wait a further 5 minutes for their mains.

I asked one of the staff if I could have our bill. It did not arrive. I had to ask for it again. The person I asked for the bill originally was on his phone just inside the front door.

The food was good but I am afraid the service was poor .

Regards
David R

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SO
London
24 reviews
Dined on 1 May 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

I like The Happenstance; quirky menu nicely pressed and prepared.
The service is fine but a bit hit and miss - staff are pleasant though

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S
London
37 reviews
Dined on 22 January 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Not much gluten free choice. Food is ok but nothing to shout about.

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b
London
35 reviews
Dined on 28 December 2017
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Reliable restaurant in a popular area of the city. Relaxed and casual. Good for business lunches and meeting friends.

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S
London
37 reviews
Dined on 14 December 2017
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Service was good despite the restaurant having a large booking. It was a bit disappointing though that the gluten free burger wasn't available as they didn't have any gluten free bread!

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C
London
6 reviews
Dined on 11 December 2017
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Really enjoyed our brunch here, right in the heart of the city and very conveniently located for St Paul's tube. Would also be good for business lunches / dinners.

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l
London
12 reviews
Dined on 30 November 2017
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Nice central option for a business lunch (nice food, decent prices, quick service)

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OT
London
2 reviews
Dined on 29 November 2017
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great, easy food

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FG
London
18 reviews
Dined on 24 November 2017
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Nicer than expected food, great service even though busy; perfect for a work-day catch up with friends in the City

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w
London
1 review
Dined on 3 November 2017
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

We made a booking on OpenTable but when we arrived we were told there was no reservation in our name. After initially blaming OpenTable, it became clear Happenstance just hadn't read their emails; and we were told to go elsewhere as they were fully booked. Rubbish experience. If you have made a booking on OpenTable, don't assume that means a table has been booked by the restaurant or even that the restaurant has tables available. Or in other words, don't use OpenTable to make reservations

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s
London
2 reviews
Dined on 2 October 2017
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Friendly and comfortable with good food and service

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G
London
36 reviews
Dined on 22 September 2017
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

Arrived at the restaurant to be told the kitchen was out of service and only drinks were available. It would have been excellent to know ahead of walking into the restaurant.

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OT
London
1 review
Dined on 1 September 2017
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Great food and service, however would prefer to have one waiter rather than being served by 3 different people. Will definitely be back.

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A
London
8 reviews
Dined on 17 August 2017
Overall 4food 2service 4ambience 4

Enjoyed the experience. In my opinion the main menu could do with reviewing. I'm not overly fussy when it comes to food but I find that when I visit Happenstance unless there is a great special on that day. I tend to go for the salad and I'm not really a salad kinda girl when it comes to eating out.

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M
London
18 reviews
Dined on 16 August 2017
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Ordered fish and chips .... great portion size... but.... where's the peas???? Very strange... but overall ... my friend and I had a great time. Very attentive staff so def no complaints. Thank you.

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OT
Edinburgh
1 review
Dined on 5 August 2017
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

We had made a booking via open table. When arriving at the restaurant we were informed that it was shut for a private party. A lady was very rude and shouted to leave now

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G
London
8 reviews
Dined on 5 July 2017
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Good gastro-pubish option in Paternoster Square. Casual but cool atmosphere. A good option for a less formal but tasty meal and a few drinks.

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OT
London
6 reviews
Dined on 12 March 2017
Overall 2food 1service 3ambience 4

The food was poor (just the cappuccino was really good). Hard and greasy pancakes. Eggs benedict royale with little salmon and hollandaise sauce like mayonnaise. Friendly staff

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H
London
10 reviews
Dined on 8 March 2017
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Booked for the meeting over a cup of coffee. Good service, good coffee and convenient locations.

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u
London
11 reviews
Dined on 4 March 2017
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Happened on the Happenstance whilst in town with family and so pleased that we did! Great space and atmosphere, good food, good service and not overpriced given so central. Would definitely recommend it.

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YI
London
15 reviews
Dined on 2 March 2017
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 3

It was okay here, nothing amazing. I was disappointed that the dessert menu was completely different to the website and contained fewer choices.

Our waiter was way too over the top and a tad cheeky (and not in a good way) and no one asked if we wanted more drinks during the meal.

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JD
London
1 review
Dined on 28 February 2017
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 3

The service was overbearing and we felt rushed. Two waiters were constantly at our table and interrupting in our conversation to make comments. It was very annoying and we felt that we were being rushed to finish our food and leave although the restaurant was not very busy.

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F
London
13 reviews
Dined on 11 February 2017
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

A great little find but unfortunately we went on a Saturday night and it was completely dead, zero atmosphere, nothing worse than loitering waiters who are bored. It's a city pub/restaurant so fair enough it was quiet but would of felt more at ease eating in the bar area. Food unfortunately nothing spectacular but again the chef was possibly underwhelmed, I've no doubt this is a completely different ambience on a weekday!

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