Lichfield is home to some truly delightful restaurants and cafes. We’ve whittled the city’s food scene down to a few of our favourites. Here you’ll find beautiful European bistros, a couple of great curry houses – including an unfeasible Guinness World Record, a pizza parlour of paradise, and some stonkingly good breakfasts.
Places to eat in Lichfield
The Olive Tree is among the most popular places to eat in Lichfield. It’s a European bistro-style restaurant with a proclivity for local produce and a seasonal menu of tasty eating. It’s a veritable town institution, and while the restaurant recently changed ownership and underwent a makeover, the food is as delicious as ever, while the setting has been brought right up to scratch. It’s a lovely spot for an evening’s meal and barely more than a five-minute walk from our Lichfield City Centre hotel. A word to the wise, you will have to book in advance.
A similarly popular choice is 1709 The Brasserie, a rustic and romantic little restaurant housed in a beautiful medieval building on Lombard Street. The restaurant is named after the year Dr Samuel Johnson, our most famous Lichfieldian, was born. While there’s plenty of nods to the past in 1709, the bistro menu is modern and tasty. We’d especially recommend the cheesecake, so be sure to save room.
Should you ever find yourself craving a curry, make your way to Eastern Eye on Bird Street and sample the Indian cuisine of the chef who set the 2005 Guinness World Record for the world’s largest curry, at a whopping 10.3 tonnes. Novelties aside, Eastern Eye is a cracking curry house. Portions are massive, the food is really good, so too the prices and the service is exceptional. When it comes to curries, the only other place that comes close is Lal Bagh, which is a little further along Bird Street.
Staying on Bird Street, slap bang in the middle of our favourite Indian restaurants, you’ll find Thai Rainbow serving up authentic Thai food that’ll take your taste buds on an absolute trip. Inside, the restaurant is delightfully decorated with ornately carved wooden furniture. The food is delicious, and if you don’t recognise much of the menu, the staff are always happy to help with recommendations. There are a few Thai restaurants in Lichfield, but Thai Rainbow takes the biscuit.
You’ll find the best steak in town at McKenzie’s in the City. It’s a stylish steakhouse housed in The Corn Exchange on Conduit Street. The restaurant is one of the most beautiful places to eat in Lichfield, with Victorian wooden floors, vaulting ceilings and a balconied area that’s perfect for people watching while you eat your steak of choice.
Last but not least, you can get an authentic taste of Italy with a visit to Margheri, arguably the best pizzeria in the area. The pizzas are sublime, the prices are pleasing and the family that runs the business couldn’t be friendlier. Visit them on Tamworth Street; you won’t be disappointed.
Cafés in Lichfield
If you’re plotting a visit to the Samuel Johnson Birthplace Museum, one of the top activities in Lichfield, and you’re looking for somewhere to grab some daytime eats either before or after, you may want to visit Loafers. It’s one of our favourite lunch spots in Lichfield. They make marvellous made-to-order sandwiches and soups and brew up some mighty fine coffee, too.
Damn Fine Cafe is another solid choice. You’ll find it on Bird Street, just a couple minutes’ walk from our Lichfield City Centre hotel. There are plenty of tasty options on the menu, but the special event is the full English Yorkshire pudding. When you taste it, you’ll wonder why you can’t find this at every eatery on Earth. One day we should be so lucky. Until then, come to Damn Fine Cafe for some damn fine eats.
Lichfield Cathedral is one of the must-visit attractions for any newcomer to the city. If you’re looking for a cafe near the cathedral, Chapters, The Cafe in the Close sits in the shadow of its three spires. It’s a delightful place to eat, with a particularly pleasant garden area that’s perfect for some summertime al fresco lunching. The scones are sublime. The breakfasts are big. And you can get Staffordshire oatcakes – the county’s local delicacy.
Lastly, if you simply want a good pot of tea, then visit Devo-Tea of Lichfield on Breadmarket Street. It’s a vintage tea room housed in the building adjacent to Dr Samuel Johnson’s birthplace. It was said he was a devotee of tea, hence the name. The cakes and paninis are pleasant, and you won’t find a better brew in Lichfield.