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Rules Restaurant

#510 of 17,345 Restaurants in London
#551 of 18,269 Places to Eat in London
Certificate of Excellence
$$$
Neighborhood:
Covent Garden
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35 Maiden Lane, London WC2E 7LB, England
(020) 78365314
Website
Today
12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Closed now
See all hours
Hours:
Sun - Sat 12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Dining options: Breakfast, Dessert, Lunch, Dinner, Delivery, Late Night, Reservations
Description: Established by Thomas Rule in 1798, Rules is a Covent Garden institution...
Established by Thomas Rule in 1798, Rules is a Covent Garden institution and the oldest restaurant in London. Tuxedoed waiters glide around the formal interior, decorated with antique sketches, where plush banquettes offer a discreet retreat from the main dining room. The whole-hearted menu of traditional British food specialises in classic game cookery, oysters, pies and puddings, featuring game birds, roe deer and Belted Galloway beef fresh from the establishment's own High Pennines estate. The wine list is a French-led affair, or there are native draught beers served in silver tankards.
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 1,923 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 1123
    Excellent
  • 476
    Very good
  • 178
    Average
  • 92
    Poor
  • 54
    Terrible
Rating summary
  • Food
    4.5 of 5 stars
    Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
    Atmosphere
    4.5 of 5 stars
Special place

We had a very lovely meal at this historic restaurant! The rib of beef is absolutely perfect!! Excellent low key service. Definitely highly recommend for a traditional English dinner.

5 of 5 starsReviewed July 4, 2015
mnash4
,
Dundas, Canada
Good for:
  • Romantic
  • Local cuisine
  • Doing business
  • Special occasions
  • Entertaining clients
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1,923 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
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English first
Dundas, Canada
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 4, 2015 NEW

We had a very lovely meal at this historic restaurant! The rib of beef is absolutely perfect!! Excellent low key service. Definitely highly recommend for a traditional English dinner.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Fort Lau
Level Contributor
104 reviews
56 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2015 NEW

London's oldest restaurant is filled with paintings and memorabilia that immerses you in history. The food is typically British and the quality is outstanding. We were in-between theatre shows and the wait staff was excellent. We didn't feel rushed at all. Rules is certainly a place to dine for anyone who loves both history and British dining.

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Asheville, North Carolina
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2015 NEW

I brought my husband then fiancée to have the Rules experience, and how great it was! He had the quail and I had lamb. Every bite was more delightful than the last! Chatting with Joan Collins who was at the next table, was the icing on the cake! Rules is a gastronomical treat! The food and staff are excellent.

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Norwich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2015 NEW

We dine occasionally at Rules, usually for a celebratory meal of some kind. The service for a London restaurant is extremely attentive and the waiting staff are very knowledgeable. The Cocktail Bar upstairs is a must and the cocktails are some of the best I've had. Traditional English food raised to the level of high cuisine. A must for those... More 

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Tampa
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2015 NEW

Oldest continuously running restaurant in London. Amazing upper-crust authentic English fare! I recommend it highly to everyone visiting London!

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Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
64 reviews
31 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2015 NEW

I intended to have lunch at Rules on my own but having left it too late, and on the advice of the charming doorman, returned another day. Six of us came for lunch having just done a back-stage tour of the Royal Opera House Covent Garden. It was a bit unimaginative and unadventurous of us, but we all had the... More 

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Orange County, California
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2015 NEW

My husband and I enjoyed a wonderful dinner with exceptional service. The menu is a delightful mix of choices, but not a large selection, so I was disappointed when my choice (lamb) was not available. My husband's order of the grilled dover sole was just perfect, so he said and it was served over a bed of lentils in a... More 

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Rhode Island
Level Contributor
25 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2015 NEW

The history, the fancy service, and of course, the food..... So glad we splurged on this meal. This place is the real deal- The oldest restaurant in London- you just have to go and drink in the ambience. I was prepared for bad English gamey food- very pleasantly surprised at the presentation and tastiness of the food. Order the special... More 

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Lincs
Level Contributor
30 reviews
23 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2015 NEW

Another memorable evening occassion. This restaurant attracts diners across the spectrum and the staff are professional enough and equipped to deal with all! We, as ever chose to adopt a low profile. We were fortunate enough to arrive early for a 20.30 booking meaning we had to indulge in a lovely glass of Rose champagne, as the restaurant was bustling... More 

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Birmingham
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2015 NEW via mobile

We ate here last Saturday night. The White wine was served warm. The service was poor and so was the food. This place is clearly living off its name. The starter was bland. My steak served warm and not much taste. The desserts were also disappointing. The apple crumble was over cooked and served with insufficient custard. There was clearly... More 

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Additional Information about Rules Restaurant

Address: 35 Maiden Lane, London WC2E 7LB, England
Phone Number: (020) 78365314
Location: Europe  >  United Kingdom (UK)  >  England  >  London>  > Covent Garden
Open Hours:
Sunday 12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Monday 12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Tuesday 12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Wednesday 12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Thursday 12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Friday 12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Saturday 12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Average Prices: USD 36

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Restaurant Details

Location and Contact Information

  • Address: 35 Maiden Lane, London WC2E 7LB, England
  • Location: Europe  >  United Kingdom (UK)  >  England  >  London>  > Covent Garden
  • Neighborhood: Covent Garden
  • Phone Number: (020) 78365314

Price and Cuisine

  • Average Prices: USD 36

Restaurant Characteristics

  • Good for: Romantic, Local cuisine, Doing business, Special occasions, Entertaining clients

Description

Established by Thomas Rule in 1798, Rules is a Covent Garden institution and the oldest restaurant in London. Tuxedoed waiters glide around the formal interior, decorated with antique sketches, where plush banquettes offer a discreet retreat from the main dining room. The whole-hearted menu of traditional British food specialises in classic game cookery, oysters, pies and puddings, featuring game birds, roe deer and Belted Galloway beef fresh from the establishment's own High Pennines estate. The wine list is a French-led affair, or there are native draught beers served in silver tankards.
Open Hours
Sunday
12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Monday
12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Tuesday
12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Wednesday
12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Thursday
12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Friday
12:00 pm - 12:00 am
Saturday
12:00 pm - 12:00 am

Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Rules Restaurant and other visitors
3 questions
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Winchester, United Kingdom
new jersey
5 months ago

See all questions (3)

Questions? Get answers from Rules Restaurant staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?

Staying in Covent Garden

Neighborhood Profile
Covent Garden
Whether you're headed here to check out the multitude of shops, theaters, cafes, pubs, and restaurants, or simply to be among the multitude of people who pass through this pretty part of town, you'll love soaking up the festive and historic atmosphere in and around Covent Garden. Even if you don't have tickets to the opera or a show at one of the many famous theaters here, don't be surprised if find yourself captivated by some impromptu act of a street performer wowing the crowds in Covent Garden's Piazza. If you do have tickets, you'll be pleased to note that many of the local eateries accommodate theatergoers with prix fixe menus, early dinners, and later than usual opening hours. 


Explore this neighborhood