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AA Notable Wine List 2017-18
AA rating

About this rating

Restaurants are awarded from 1 to 5 Rosettes for culinary excellence. One Rosette restaurants are highly recommended in a local area and five Rosettes have reached the pinnacle of culinary excellence at a world class level.

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Modern European cooking opposite the Common

AA Inspector

At a glance

Private dining
Wines by the glass
Wheelchair access

The aubergine-coloured frontage behind its compact hedge overlooking Wandsworth Common has been a hot-button address since the 1980s, but has spent over 20 years of that under Bruce Poole's aegis, its long service attributable to its dual role as both destination and outstanding neighbourhood restaurant. The decor is relatively muted, pale walls framing a monochrome look, the better to focus attention where it belongs – on the plate. Poole has always favoured an eclectic approach to modern European food, the roots of the menu spreading over that broad arc from France and Spain to Italy. The last produces sterling pasta dishes such as flaked gurnard in tagliatelle with monk's beard in tomato and basil sauce, while southwest France supplies the reference-point for a terrine of chicken livers and foie gras, accompanied by cured duck, celeriac remoulade and toasted brioche. At main, the Spanish note sounds with panache in a dish that combines hake and chorizo in sweetcorn velouté with green olive crostini for a fully rounded composition, or there may be crackled pork belly with crushed sweet potato, Toulouse sausage and radish. In among the dessert classics, such as crème brûlée and hot chocolate moelleux with praline parfait, are interspersed more speculative offerings like apple mess tartlet with yogurt sorbet.

Opening hours

  • Closed: 24–26 December and 1 January
  • Lunch served from: 12
  • Lunch served until: 2.30
  • Dinner served from: 6.30
  • Dinner served until: 10


  • Chef(s): Bruce Poole, Matt Christmas

Food and drink

  • Cuisine style: Modern British
  • Vegetarian dishes available
  • Wines under £30: 30
  • Wines over £30: 750
  • Wines by the glass: 15

Price guide

  • Service charge
  • Credit cards accepted


  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Accessible toilets
  • Assist dogs welcome


  • Seats: 75
  • Private dining available
  • Private dining seats: 16
  • Off-site parking available: On street, station car park

Additional information

  • Seats: 75
  • Private dining available
  • Private dining seats: 16

Getting here

Nearest train station

Wandsworth Common, Balham
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Three-course lunch from£35**Minimum price for a 3-course lunch *Minimum price for a 3-course lunch
*Minimum price for a 3-course lunch
*Minimum price for a 3-course lunch
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