67 Pall Mall
Perhaps the daddy of them all in London, though we should point out straight away that 67 Pall Mall is a members' club. If you have a couple of grand to spare, it'd be well spent – members have access to an unrivalled list of wines, all of them sold at an eminently sensible price.
Wine lovers in search of an exclusive setting
Vast by-the-glass selection
Architecture by Sir Edwin Lutyens
Refined classic dishes
Housed in a grade II listed building, which is a former bank designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens, members of 67 Pall Mall have access to an unrivalled list of wines, all of them sold at an eminently sensible price, all expertly curated by Master Sommelier Ronan Sayburn.The list is crafted “to excite, challenge and captivate” the club’s members, its amazing diversity and depth made possible thanks to its extensive sub-basement cellars, which allow 67 Pall Mall to hold thousands of cases of the finest and rarest wines in the world on the premises.
Pricing is a fundamental consideration and works on the basis of a small cash mark-up, rather than a multiple of the cost price.
As founder and CEO Grant Ashton explains: “The concept of bottles forever locked away in cellars gathering dust is our own particular bête-noir. Our mission is to entice our members to pull the cork and discover a new wine.”
Members make their wine choices on a searchable list on iPads which is packed with winemakers’ notes, tasting notes and critics’ scores. Further expert guidance is available from 67 Pall Mall’s team of 10 full-time sommeliers – possibly the best in London, including head sommelier Terry Kandylis (Moët UK Sommelier of the Year 2016, formerly Best Sommelier in Greece), assistant head sommelier Gareth Ferreira (UK Ruinart Challenge 2016 winner, Best Sommelier in South Africa 2016), Roberto Duran (formerly Best Sommelier in Spain) and Caroline Fridolffson. A section of Sommelier’s Recommendations presents an ever-evolving list of the team’s favourite wines. This section gives guests immediate access to an edited selection of wines from 67 Pall Mall’s cellar, which this December will increase its holdings by 2,000 to 5,000 wines, as part of its bid to become the hime of the UK’s largest wine list. In addition, a massive 500 wines are available by the glass, including such drops of the gods as Château Latour 1961, Harlan Estate 1997 and Sassicaia 1985, as a small sample or full glass, thanks to Coravin technology.
Earlier this year, the club set about expanding the venue with a new floor, set for completion in October. The additional space will allow the club to install another wine bar that will carry 400 wines by the glass, as well as a further bar just for spirits, along with a new private dining area called The Marlborough Room. It will also feature a less formal seating area with views over Pall Mall, or towards a real fire, which Ashton said he wanted to install to make 67 Pall Mall “more club-like”. The extra floor will provide an area
for eating and drinking without the need to book or wear a jacket – “people want non- bookability and something more relaxed”, he said, adding, “We don’t want to lose those people who just want to drop in.”
Wine lovers fortunate enough to pass through the doors of 67 Pall Mall are likely to enjoy themselves quite a lot. Membership is a formidable £2,500 (£1,250 joining fee, then £1,250 a year), but if you have it, spend it here.