The Lighterman

4.1
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1549 reviews
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£26 to £40
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British
The Lighterman, a pub, dining room & bar, is open all day, every day, offering everything from a morning coffee or breakfast through to lunch, dinner and evening cocktails. Our Head Chef has created a modern British menu with European influences for breakfast, lunch, dinner & Sunday roast. The extensive drinks menu includes draught & bottled beers, craft ales and seasonal cocktails, together with a well-curated and affordable wine list. There is plenty of outdoor seating. The canal-side bar with alfresco terrace overlooks the water, the ground floor has seating directly onto Granary Square and the top floor has its own wraparound terrace, with panoramic views across the square and canal.
What 1549 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.1based on recent ratings
4.0
food
4.1
service
4.2
ambience
3.7
value
Noise · Moderate
85% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
London
1 review
Dined a day ago
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Good quality honest, fresh, simple food cooked well.
Lovely staff, especially Mitchell who went the extra mile without asking. Thank you..

GH
London
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food was amazing and the view from the restaurant over the canal is beautiful.

DR
Cambridge
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall2food1service2ambience3

We had booked in advance but still had to wait half an hour to be seated. No where to sit whilst waiting so stood in the middle of the bar area having to constantly move out of the way of waiters and bar staff. When we eventually got seated we were starving and ordered bread and butter to munch while we were waiting, only to be told they had run out! When my veggie burger arrived it was stone cold but I was so hungry by this time I just ate it anyway. We had to remind them to bring our wine and then my husband's chips. The service depended very much on which waiter you were dealing with. We did not pay the service charge and the waiter was very understanding about it and apologised for the cold food. Wouldn't return.

H
London
7 reviews
Dined on 16 February 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This is a favourite to return to. Great table, great service, great food. Not at all rushed, we could spend time catching up and having a leisurely mean. Staff were great fun and made it extra special. Would heartily recomend.

The Lighterman
Responded 6 days ago

Dear Herbie, Thank you for your lovely review. I'm so pleased to hear that you enjoyed your time at The Lighterman and our team left such a mark with their service! Best, Emma

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OT
Yorkshire
3 reviews
Dined on 16 February 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Quick catch up with family who were visiting - nice place.

F
Wales
1 review
Dined on 14 February 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a great evening and the staff couldn't do enough for us.

The Lighterman
Responded 6 days ago

Thank you Foodlover, Delighted to hear that you enjoyed your evening with us at The Lighterman! Best, Emma

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B
London
1 review
Dined on 14 February 2020
Overall4food5service5ambience5

Great Restaurant, lovely staff members and even better food

OT
1 review
Dined on 13 February 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience3

Food was interesting but the whole place was way too noisy--would recommend if you've got a loud and lively group who don't mind shouting over the food.

The Lighterman
Responded 6 days ago

Thank you for leaving us a review. I'm sorry to hear that you found the ambience of our venue too noisy. We will take your feedback on board for the future. Best, Emma

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OT
London
2 reviews
Dined on 9 February 2020
Overall5food4service4ambience5

Good atmosphere. Food came slightly early. Overall good quality

LN
1 review
Dined on 9 February 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Had breakfast before getting the Eurostar. The food and service were great, we had a good spot by the window overlooking the canal .

The Lighterman
Responded 6 days ago

Thanks for stopping by LesleyN. Pleased you enjoyed your breakfast and the team looked after you well! Best, Emma

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j
London
22 reviews
Dined on 8 February 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Meal for two, despite one of us being delayed by a train, the staff were perfectly happy to wait and not hassle - despite it being Saturday evening and pretty busy.
Nice range of drinks and food - cooked really well and definitely a location we will be going back to - only a five minute walk from Kings Cross!

The Lighterman
Responded 6 days ago

Dear jp1016, Thank you for leaving us a review. I am delighted to see that you enjoyed our food and drinks offering, and the team looked after you so well. Pop back in March when we will be launching our new Spring Menu! Best, Emma

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AF
1 review
Dined on 8 February 2020
Overall3food3service2ambience4

Mostly everything was fine, except for one thing: they charged us £9 for water for the table. I understand that some people (bizarrely) want to buy bottled water for the table and that's fine, however, I explicitly had asked for tap water, and was offered more water throughout the night, unaware that I was sneakily being charged for it.

Please train your staff to be more forward about whether or not you're charging for something they could be getting for free.

The Lighterman
Responded 6 days ago

Dear AaronF, Thank you for leaving your review. We take all feedback on board, good and bad. I'm sorry to hear that you were charged for water unexpectedly. It is in our training for service, that all staff should offer all waters available. We would hope that any discrepancies would be raised with a manager/staff member so we can resolve the issue to the satisfactory of our guests. If you would like to speak with me further, please contact me on 020 3846 3400 Best, Emma

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J
Yorkshire
3 reviews
Dined on 8 February 2020
Overall4food4service2ambience4

Fantastic building, decor and location. Service was average and staff not hugely knowledgeable about wine and food. This however did not detract from a very nice leisurely lunch. Food arrived quickly. Nice loos!

The Lighterman
Responded 6 days ago

Juliet, Thank you for leaving us a review. I am happy to hear that you enjoyed your meal and the ambience at The Lighterman. I'm sorry to hear that your service was not up to our usual standards. We are constantly investing in training of all staff to ensure we are striving for the best quality of service for our guests. Best, Emma

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DB
London
41 reviews
Dined on 7 February 2020
Overall3food3service2ambience3

Disappointed by very slow service. 20 minutes to bring olives and bread and 40 minutes for the second bottle of wine. Mains did follow starters fairly quickly which was good.

NL
London
1 review
Dined on 7 February 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Overall the Lighterman was excellent, but what was particularly noteworthy was how well the staff attended to my daughter’s allergies. It’s easy for her to feel self conscious about raising it with waiting staff. It was great to see the team at the Lighterman being so quick to flag their awareness and explain how easily they could work around the menu to find her something delicious. Very much appreciated!

The Lighterman
Responded 6 days ago

Thank you NickL for taking the time to leave us a review. I am so happy to hear that our team were able to accommodate all of your daughter's needs promptly. I will pass on your feedback to the team on that evening who I know will be glad to know that you all enjoyed your dinner and experience with us! Best, Emma

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JP
1 review
Dined on 7 February 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

all good thanks...………………………………………………………………………….....

FD
1 review
Dined on 7 February 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Lovely staff. Lovely place. Tasty cocktails. Delicious food!

AD
Cambridge
1 review
Dined on 6 February 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience3

Delicious food and excellent service. Will come again. Only negative was it was a little noisy. Great view of Kings X from the first floor.

BA
Oxford
3 reviews
Dined on 6 February 2020
Overall3food3service4ambience4

Very buzzy atmosphere. Felt very rushed. Ordered a sharing veggie platter and margharita flatbread; both were average. After 1.5 hours, we were told that the next group had arrived for our table. At no point were we told that it was less than a 2 hour turnaround. To give staff their due, we were then offered a space at the bar to finish our drinks.

S
London
1 review
Dined on 4 February 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience3

Great location & views, Chips were amazing!!! Suitable for both formal and informal dates would recommend

PL
1 review
Dined on 2 February 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

An excellent central venue for a family gathering. Reservation system worked well. Attentive and well informed staff (we needed advice on gluten free menu items). A bit noisy but bearable. Wide-ranging menu. Clean!! Only mild complaint was the lack of proper vegetarian gravy to go with the Sunday roast (the mushroom ‘paste’ was NOT an adequate substitute). Would certainly go again.

DC
London
2 reviews
Dined on 2 February 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Beautiful views over London and a very buzzy place to eat. Four adults and a small child and the food was good. Childs menu but the portions were not very big at all. Large adult portions. The food could have been a bit warmer and the sticky toffee pudding particularly was not as good as it could have been due to the temperature but great service and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.

PJ
London
1 review
Dined on 2 February 2020
Overall1food2service1ambience2

Not clear enough online that breakfast / brunch menu finishes at 11.30.
Very surly waiter when I asked about it.

The Lighterman
Responded on 12 February 2020

Thank you very much for joining us and for your valued feedback, I’m really sorry to hear you were misinformed, if at all possible I would love to chat further on your visit to ensure this doesn’t happen again. If you would like to get in touch, you can contact me on 02038463400. I look forward to hearing from you, Best, Dariusz General Manager

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V
Bedfordshire
2 reviews
Dined on 1 February 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Had my birthday dinner here with friends and the service was great and te food delicious, and expensive night out but a treat.

OT
1 review
Dined on 1 February 2020
Overall1food5service1ambience1

The worst management and staff, unprofessional, and unbecoming and has no idea of how to treat customers

The Lighterman
Responded on 12 February 2020

Thank you very much for your valued feedback. We take all feedback on board, I’m quite concerned to hear about your recent experience with us and I would really like to have a chat about your visit in more detail, if you could please call me on 02038463400 it would be very much appreciated. I look forward to hearing from you. Dariusz General Manager

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R
London
1 review
Dined on 30 January 2020
Overall4food5service4ambience4

Beautiful tasty food with excellent non obtrusive service. Great atmosphere and views but quite noisy. Not great for intimate conversation.

MB
London
1 review
Dined on 30 January 2020
Overall3food4service2ambience3

Slow service, waiters mixed the teas up.
For a midweek lunch booking (business meeting) they were slow to bring sauce when requested, slow to take orders and slow to bring the bill unfortunately.

The food was tasty.

PM
London
2 reviews
Dined on 29 January 2020
Overall2food2service2ambience2

Mainly because the service was off the pace, the food cold and environment went from baking to freezing.

G
1 review
Dined on 28 January 2020
Overall3food3service5ambience5

Beware the set price lunch menu: the starter with white beetroot was very disappointing as it only had two extremely thin slices of beetroot. One of the options for main course was a salad and you could add chicken or cheese for an extra payment. Three of our party chose this with the additional protein. It was very poor value, they were still hungry afterwards as the salad amounted to what other places would serve as a side. The quinoa was almost non existent. I chose the fish and chips which was excellent and I didn’t have to pay extra for it. The pricing and portions seemed very unbalanced.

SC
Los Angeles
7 reviews
Dined on 27 January 2020
Overall2food2service3ambience3

Noisy
Food so so

CC
London
2 reviews
Dined on 26 January 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Lovely laid back restaurant with a nice menu and good views of the area

BW
London
1 review
Dined on 26 January 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience3

Quality pub grub, very tender beef roast and good selection of puds. A bit noisy but full and active and well positioned

S
London
1 review
Dined on 26 January 2020
Overall4food5service4ambience5

Food is amazing, I tried the spinach florentine and the poached eggs were made to perfection! I would definitely visit again and probably request for window side seating in advance.

NP
London
2 reviews
Dined on 25 January 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

It was extremely good. The food was excellent and the service very good. Our table overlooking the canal was very comfortable and nobody hurried us!

JM
London
2 reviews
Dined on 25 January 2020
Overall4food5service3ambience5

The most annoying thing was we had to give the table back at 3pm and we weren’t told this at the time of booking. Our waitress did suggest we went downstairs to the bar but there were no tables and one in our group was on crutches.

The Lighterman
Responded on 27 January 2020

Dear JaneM Thank you for your review. I'm truly sorry to hear that our two hours returning table policy affected your experience at The Lighterman. I want apologise if we didn't communicate that verbally on you arrival. We always trying to be as clear as we can when accepting the reservation and confirming it via email. I will take your comments as constructive feedback and something we could improve in the future. Best, Damian

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D
1 review
Dined on 24 January 2020
Overall4food4service3ambience4

Food was good, service was a little slow though and didn’t feel as friendly. Still an amazing place to be with some great views.

LL
London
6 reviews
Dined on 22 January 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience3

I do like the upstairs restaurant but its juts so noisy! I wish venues like these (all hard surface) would think about noise impact and invest in something that absorbs the background noise - walking up the stairs to the restaurant sounds like you’re entering into some kind of school canteen/refectory.

Having said that the service and the food and drinks are good, and it’s a good location.

The Lighterman
Responded on 27 January 2020

Dear LondonLocal Thank you for your review. I'm delighted that you enjoyed our food and drinks as well as our service. Sometimes the volume can go slightly up, especially when people are heaving such a great time! Obviously I appreciate your feedback and I'm assuring you that we are working tirelessly in order to improve every aspect of guest experience. Best, Damian

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AR
1 review
Dined on 21 January 2020
Overall4food5service3ambience5

The food was absolutely delicious. The service not quite as great. When we arrived we were told (what we felt quite rudely) that we could only have the table for 1h30. We ended up staying at the table for an extra hour on top of that but as we asked several times if they needed the table back yet, we were repeatedly told we could stay for an extra 20 mins. As a result what could have been a nice relaxing dinner ended up feeling rushed and pressurised and we felt somewhat unwelcome in the otherwise lovely restaurant!

The Lighterman
Responded on 27 January 2020

Dear AmeliaR Thank you for you review. I'm delighted that you find our food "absolutely delicious". I'm really sorry that you felt that you dining experience was too short and I admit that it was our fault to misinform you about the returning time. I would like to thank you for you feedback and assure you that we are take it as motivation to do better in the future. Best Damian

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MP
London
14 reviews
Dined on 21 January 2020
Overall4food3service3ambience4

Set in the new Kings Cross development the Lighterman has good views of the Regents Canal. The set lunch menu is good value. Service was a little slow especially when waiting to pay. Food was good - Chicken and pearl barley was tasty, the calamari average.

The Lighterman
Responded on 27 January 2020

Dear MarkP Thank for your review. I'm happy that you enjoyed our stunning views! I'm taking your feedback about the service and food as something that we could improve and I'm assuring we are starting right now! Best Damian

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BM
London
3 reviews
Dined on 20 January 2020
Overall3food4service2ambience3

The service was a bit pushy. They asked us three times if we wanted drinks, by different people, and each time we said we wanted to choose our food before ordering wine.

Then once we had chosen, they the told us what they had left on the menu. So we had to quickly change on the spot, whilst they watched over us.


The food was ok to good, although the mushroom tart main course was small for a main course. It looked like a starter for the price of a main.

The setting next to the canal was nice however and the decor quite good too.