We round up 10 of the best wine-focused restaurants in London which you should make a beeline for when they reopen.
While the drinks business team has continued to publish online content and a monthly magazine, the same can sadly not be said for its sister publication Wine List Confidential.
The 2020 guide was due to be printed this month in time for the London Wine Fair, which was scheduled for this week, but plans were shelved when restaurants and bars were forced to close on 20 March.
Guide author Douglas Blyde had been conducting restaurant visits and sommelier interviews since January, and this week should have been the culmination of months of work.
It has been a torrid time for the hospitality industry, who have now experienced months of uncertainty. The sector in the UK saw sales falls 21.3% in the first quarter of 2020, according to industry body UKHospitality. Hospitality outlets have been told that they could start to re-open from July, but with social distancing measures in place. For some, stripping out tables and enforcing a two-metre rule would mean reopening with such restrictions would be financially unfeasible.
Some restaurants, however, have been able to reopen as takeaways or as grocery stores. db rounded up 25 such venues across the capital last month.
In recent weeks, more eateries have gone down this route. Just last week restaurants and chefs including Gymkhana, Leroy (with its rotisserie chicken delivery brand Royale), Le Relais de Venise, and Adam Handling, with his delivery and collection service called Hame, began operating once more. This week has brought news of the reopening of some of Ottolenghi’s delis and a delivery service from Mayfair’s Bombay Bustle.
However, all of this does not beat the experience of dining in a restaurant and being waited on hand, foot and finger. So, without further ado, here’s WLC’s list of the top wine-focused restaurants in London we can’t wait to return to. Stay tuned for our list of wine-focused bars and pubs.
Please note that all interviews were conducted prior to lockdown.