For a Quiet, Cheap, Lunch: Yalla Yalla
For a Pub With Great Food: Harwood Arms
For a Pakistani-style Party: Tayyabs
But I mean all those things in a good way. And once you're past the wait, the food descends immediately: spicy and shatter-crisp popadoms and homemade chutneys before you've picked up your menu, followed perhaps by a tandoor-cooked lamb chops or a boldly spiced but intensely lamb-y Karahi Gosht. Go with a group, bring your own booze, order as much as possible, and leave with your wallet intact.
For a Meal of Grazing: Borough Market
Borough Market for the Crowd Averse
Neal's Yard Dairy: 6 Park Street, SE1 9AB (map); 020 7367 0799; nealsyarddairy.co.uk; Monmouth Coffee Company: 2 Park Street, SE1 9AB (map); monmouthcoffee.co.uk; Brindisa: The Floral Hall, Stoney Street, Borough Market, London SE1 9AF (map); 0207 407 1036; brindisa.com/shop
For Animal Parts and Culinary History: St John
For a Blowout Brunch: Cookbook Cafe
In the Intercontinental Park Lane, it does have a five-star hotel's steep prices and air of slight formality, but if you're celebrating an occasion or looking to spend Sunday afternoon in a happy food daze, this is a fine place to do it; the food is as tasty as it is plentiful.