The dollar is at an all-time low against the British pound, but we still found some (relatively) inexpensive restaurants with good food thanks to fellow Chowhounders and a few guide books. Here's the report from our four-day trip:
ROCK AND SOLE PLACE
47 Endell Street, Covent Garden
I knew this place from my last visit. Wonderful fish and chips. We had cod and haddock, and both were excellent. There's picnic table outside seating if the weather is nice. There's nice indoor seating upstairs, and lots more room downstairs, but it's a bit claustrophobiic down there you'll be near the toilets.
47 Chandos Place, near Charing Cross Tube and Oscar Wilde monument
A wonderful pub with farm-fresh sausages that they put into rolls to make terrific sandwiches. Settle in with a pint of beer or cider and a sausage sandwich, and soak up the atmosphere. The front window opens to the street, so it's always bright and breezy inside.
80-81 Wilton, near Victoria Station
Another good fish and chips restaurant. Large and airy, not much atmosphere. Maybe not quite as good as Rock and Sole, but not far behind.
147 Earls Court (near Earls Court tube station)
9 Marshall Street (Oxford Circus tube)
A chain of Indian restaurants with very good (and surprisingly spicy) food. They have an early-bird dinner before 6:00 or 6:30, and they also have a huge price fix meal that's a good deal.
BRICK LANE BEIGEL BAKE
159 Brick Lane
If you happen to find yourself in the Whitechapel area (as we did taking a fun Jack the Ripper walking tour), don't miss Brick Lane, which is a funky artist-friendly street that reminded me a lot of the East Village in NYC before it got gentrified. There are tons of interesting looking Indian restaurants, and this place, which is an institution. They serve a freshly baked bagel, fill it with salt beef (sort of like corned beef), slather it with mustard and dressing, and boy is it tasty.