Clapham – best place to dine out in London?! (updated)

Let’s face it Clappers, we’ve always been spoilt for choice in the culinary department. However, Clapham seems to have gone into overdrive in 2014 with the introduction of tonnes of cutting edge, contemporary places to eat.

Love Clapham loves a good nosh with a slosh of bubbles and here’s our pick of the best in a rough order.IMG_2645

a) New Clapham restaurants we’ve been to and recommend

  1. Zumbura – fresh, zingy tastes with commendable friendly outstanding service.
  2. The Dairy – this new entry to the Clapham food scene has exceptional food and a lovely environment. When we went, we had the taster menu and it was exceptional. At the higher end of the cost scale but worth every penny.
  3. Ferm’s £5 pizza – best pizza in town and only a fiver. We love it for its relaxed easy going atmosphere. Hopefully it won’t get the awful queue that its breakfast guise (Breads Etcetera) gets, because we never go for brekkie there because of that.
  4. WC – knowledgeable staff with excellent wine and delicious charcuterie. Very stylish and cool location too. Highly recommended.
  5. Chicago Rib Shack pricier than you’d probably expect from a rib shack (it really could do with about £2 slashed from everything). However, the ribs are simply incredible. And the service is fun and friendly, much better than other service at other rib shacks who shall remain nameless. We love this place… although the bouncer feels a little unnecessary, this is gentrified Clapham afterall 😉
  6. Brickwood Coffee – for a coffee shop it is a bit pricey, the reason for that though is the excellent quality of the coffee AND the amazing toasted ciabattas that they sell, super tasty.
  7. Abbeville Kitchen – extremely good if also extremely expensive traditional fare done very, very well. You won’t feel short changed.
  8. No. 32 Old Town – this place was packed from the offset and the two times we’ve been in we’ve had an outstanding meal. However the service has always been a little bit frantic and odd. We’re putting this down to “finding their feet” for the time being though.
  9. Byron Burger – you know what they sell, it’s just good they now sell it in Clapham!
  10. Mama Lan – teeny tiny with an even smaller menu but it’s deelish! Our one massive gripe is that they still don’t take cards almost a year on… We’ve stopped going because of that because we never have cash on us!
  11. The Dessert Deli – obviously not a cafe but it still sells food! The owner, Laura Amos, makes the best cakes in South London, don’t miss them. Located in Clapham Junction station with a new shop.
  12. Aux Marveilleux de Fred – you can’t sit in this place on Northcote Road either but their cakes are incredible, whatever those little mound things are! 😀

b) Oldies and still Goldies – some of these are still trumping the newbies

  1. The Pepper Tree – one of the tastiest, best priced places in Clapham with a stunning location overlooking Clapham Common. Friendlier service than most of the new places. And it’s just had a totally awesome, stylish make over!
  2. Fantasia – in amongst all of the posh overpriced nonsense, Fantasia remains down to earth, affordable and high quality. No restaurant is as rounded and perfectly formed. Of course, we only go for the breakfast / brunch / late lunchy breakfast. We need more casual places like this that don’t break the bank. Also has MUCH better service than most new breakfast places.
  3. Maharani – you’d be mistaken (wrongly mistaken) if you judge this place by its cover. The building may look incredibly dated but the food and service is simply perfect. One of the best indian restaurants we’ve ever been to and it’s right here on our high street. Please do use this place, you won’t regret it.
  4. Trinity – expensive but worth it. If you want to impress or for culinary razzmatazz, go here.
  5. Gastro – informal, not the standard of Trinity or the other more expensive places but the price here reflects that. Probably the most relaxing night out in Claps.
  6. Northcote and Stonhouse – part of the same chain and both equally amazing, if already a victim of their own success by being too popular so hard to get a table at the weekend without booking earlier in the week. The waiting staff always feel rushed off their feet, although friendly. You can’t deny the amazing quality of their food and drinks (especially the steaks!)
  7. Gourmet Burger Kitchen (GBK) – it’s been around for a while and has recently upped its game a bit to compete with the new burger kids on the block. We think this place is giving Byron a run for its money actually, and we’ve been opting to go to this place instead recently because it’s a tad less busy.

Other new places we haven’t been to yet include the soon to open The Manor on Clapham Manor Street. Also, The Craft Beer Co on Clapham Manor Street is supposed to have great burgers – we’ve been for their great ales but not food yet. Olives and Meze looks interesting too.

Have we missed something or do you disagree with us? Please tell us in our new Clapham Eating Out forum.

Own a restaurant that’s not listed here? Please don’t take it personally. We can’t like everything! 🙂 If you’re new, we just haven’t been yet and if you’ve been around for a while, we probably just think the cost or service is a bit skew whiff right now and we intentionally don’t bad press places. Feel free to tell us about your Clapham gaff on the forum and we’ll pop on down for another take ASAP 🙂

Burgers and American BBQ restaurants in Clapham

Clapham is fast becoming THE place to go for burgers and American-style barbecue restaurants. Clapham High Street alone is home to the ever popular Bodean’s, posh burgers at Haché, the old faithful Gourmet Burger Kitchen, as well as a large new branch of Byron. Other recent newcomers are the lively Honky Tonk bar and diner near Clapham Common and the brand new Chicago Rib Shack which is underneath the arches by Clapham High Street station and is running opening discounts.
 
We popped into Red Dog South recently, which opened opposite Clapham North station a few months ago. It was a warm summer evening when we visited so we sat outside until late at one of the tables out front. We also had a peek at the restaurant area inside which is decked out in wood panelling giving it a bit of a wild west feel in keeping with the American saloon theme.
 
The menu covers everything from ribs and burgers to fried catfish and southern fried chicken. We particularly enjoyed a juicy blue cheese burger and a side of original buffalo wings which were tasty and tangy with just the right amount of spiciness, plus the blue cheese sauce that comes with the wings is not to be missed!
 
If you’re feeling particularly hungry (or competitive) Red Dog has a couple of challenges for you to sink your teeth into! The mighty Devastator burger is made from steak mince, pulled pork, 6 rashers of bacon and 6 slices of cheese (phew!) The challenge is to finish the burger and a milkshake within 10 minutes.
 
And if you can stand the heat there’s the hot wing challenge which allows 10 minutes to eat 6 chicken wings made with red hot naga viper chillies.  On our visit there was a brave contender getting stuck into the hot wing challenge complete with latex gloves to protect from the fiery chillies! Winners receive a t-shirt and a proud place on the restaurant’s ‘wall of flame’ leader board….
 
With a range of newbies opening up alongside the established chains, if it’s ribs, wings, pulled pork and burgers you’re after, then you’re spoilt for choice for places to get your fill in Clapham.
 
Where’s your favourite place for burgers and BBQ? Will a branch of MeatLiquor be next to come to Clapham High Street?! Completed any of the man vs food challenges?
Share your favourites on the community forum >>
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Are Clapham restaurants getting too expensive?

Dining out

Recession. What recession? A number of people have commented to Love Clapham on the rising prices of meals out across the Clapham area, with some restaurants almost doubling their prices since last year. We mentioned this on our Twitter account (@loveclapham) and had a couple of responses about discounts and offers. @g_rennie said, “not for lunch at Trinity!! An incredible bargain and exceptional food and service” while @loftclapham said “Not at the Loft. we are doing 50% off food everyday apart from Saturday.” Discounts are always fantastic, but what do you think about the increased cost of dining out around these parts?

Review: Clapham’s Top 5 breakfasts

Clapham fried breakfast

You may have gathered that here at Love Clapham, we love our breakfasts. With such a variety of cafes and restaurants in Clapham offering full English breakfasts, pancakes, muffins and more, Claphamites are certainly spoilt for choice – no wonder we’re breakfast obsessed! Of course, there are also some breakfast bloopers out there, so to help sift through the barrage of bacon we’ve listed our current Top 5 favourite breakfast cafes in Clapham. Which is your favourite? Continue reading

Clapham restaurants and cafes

Clapham is rammed with restaurants and cafes of all shapes, sizes, prices and tastes. Whether you want a hearty traditional roast, oriental cuisine, fine dining, fast food or a delicious breakfast, Clapham has something for you. 

If you run a Clapham restaurant or cafe that isn’t listed here, please send us an email and we will add it.

Restaurants

Brasserie James – fine dining and excellent service  (100m from Clapham South tube)

The Blind Tiger – great 1920’s prohibition era themed restaurant, extensive wine and  cocktails list (Near Queenstown Road)

Bon Bon – fresh and organic breakfasts, lunches and dinners (Abbeville Road, Clapham South)

Breads Etcetera – organic traditional and contemporary cuisine, famous for toasters on tables, special breakfasts and of course its bread (Clapham High Street)

Souk – oriental tapas, good cocktail list (Clapham High Street)

Cafes

The Black Lab – brilliant coffee and amazing french pastries (opposite the Common, stones throw from Clapham Common tube

Park House – breakfasts, lunches and dinners (Clapham Park Road, near Clapham Common tube)

Brew – healthy & hearty breakfasts, good smoothies and outside seating area (Northcote Road nr Clapham Junction)

Perfect Blend cafe, Clapham, London

[field name=street-view]Perfect Blend cafe is a relatively new addition to Clapham and is tucked away between Clapham High Street and Abbeville Road. Don’t let its location stop you from going, it has great decor, a good selection of food and chilled out atmosphere that set it apart from the busier parts of Clapham.
Continue reading

Bon Bon restaurant, Abbeville Road, Clapham, London

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Bon Bon is a good sized restaurant on a corner in the heart of the Abbeville Village. It serves fresh food and drink throughout the week and has a small seating area out the front for use on those sunny summer days. Continue reading

Boiled Egg & Soliders, Northcote Road, Clapham Junction, London

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The Boiled Egg & Soliders, as the name would suggest, specialises in delicious breakfasts. With a good range of different meals and its handy location on Northcote Road makes it the perfect pit stop when you’re peckish on a weekend morning. Continue reading

Breads Etcetera restaurant, Clapham High Street, London

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Breads Etcetera restaurant made breakfasts in Clapham super fashionable. Breads Etcetera bakes its own range of delicious bread that it serves in ready supply to anyone who eats there. With toasters on the tables, it’s a quirky venue with fantastic food, but go early, you can’t book and the queue always spills out on to the street. Continue reading