We think... • December 2015
Seeking a stellar glass of wine in the capital doesn’t have to be a struggle. Iain Muggoch from wine merchant Laithwaite’s recommends his top spots for a cheeky tipple
Top up a ‘Vagabond card’ and help yourself at this innovative wine bar. There are more than 100 wines on tap, and you can choose from a 25ml sample or 125ml glass simply by swiping your card at a dispensing machine. You could spend a fortune, but you also get to try loads – from famous names to something new and funky from Brazil.
Drink this: Sijnn red from David de Trafford’s micro-winery in the southern tip of South Africa.
I’ve been a member here for years and enjoy the eclectic range of wines – there’s always something new. The people behind the bar know what they’re talking about, and if you don’t like something, they’ll probably take it back.
Drink this: The Union’s core wine list supports British producers. Try the Wyfold Vineyard Sparkling Wine by Barbara Laithwaite.
This is one of London’s most amazing Peruvian restaurants. By all means start with a pisco sour, but also browse the wine list: it’s cleverly thought out in terms of food pairing. Chile and Argentina are where the exciting producers are at the moment, and wines from those regions complement the food well.
Drink this: Resist the urge for a Malbec. For something with a little more depth and backbone, try a Peruvian Cabernet blend.
This little bar has a brilliant concept: they buy only 10 cases of the wines on their list. Once they’ve run out, they order something new. This means you can regularly sample different wines. The food is good, too. Try game terrine with mustard toast, or venison sausage with truffle mash.
Drink this: See the blackboard for what’s open. Staff are happy to give recommendations.
For guaranteed good wine, visit one of Jason Atherton’s restaurants. Everything at Pollen Street Social is well designed, including the wine list: it’s not just a who’s who of big names. The food is always outstanding. Order the tasting menu and make friends with the sommelier.
Drink this: Try a white with your roast cod and cockles: Mas Champart is from the beautiful Saint-Chinian in the Languedoc-Roussillon.