Rex Whistler


+44 (0)20 7887 8825


Tate Britain



Given the prices and vintage choices, this is a list which basically says ‘Drink Me’


Half bottles
Good vintages
Art-rich environment

Review 2018

Opened in 1927, when it was known as the Tate Gallery refreshment room, and restored in 2013, the Rex Whistler restaurant at Tate Britain showcases consistent wine producers at the top of their game at arrestingly good prices which include service. The handsome room, which is not overly formal takes its name from the English Artist commissioned to paint the fantastical wraparound mural for the room entitled, ‘The Expedition in Pursuit of Rare Meats’, depicting the story of a royal party travelling the world in search of exotic foods.

The seriously stocked and properly cared for cellar, which, given the prices and vintage choices, basically says ‘Drink Me’, has been built up by Hamish Anderson and his team. Anderson began his hospitality career as a sommelier at Bibendum, the original Conran restaurant in the Michelin building today overseen by Claude Bosi. Now CEO and wine buyer for Tate, Anderson also writes about wine, with his book ‘Vino: Great Wine for Everyday Life’ selling more than 15,000 copies. Anderson also pens columns for the Saturday Telegraph Magazine and features for Telegraph Men. In recent years, he mentored Gustavo Medina who oversees the Rex Whistlers wine list on a daily basis.

According to restaurant manager, Matthew Randall, who joined in summer 2016 following several years working in five star hotels in Scotland, London, Canada and Dubai, visits are made annually to Bordeaux and Burgundy to secure wines en-primeur, with regular meetings with new suppliers to continuously evolve the list.

With exceptions, such as the ‘Wines of California Dinner’ last year, coinciding with the Hockney Exhibition, and the annual Burgundy wine dinner, the restaurant is open lunchtimes only. Hence the wide range of half bottles, such as Nyetimber Rosé, Maximin Grünhauser Riesling, two decades old Château Musar, and Ridge Montebello, allowing guests a wider selection at a time of day when they may wish to drink less.

Begin with vintage Champagne close to retail price then while away the afternoon with good, rested Rhônes, Bordeaux, Burgundies and Californians, alongside starters which may include duck with Tate coffee cure, root vegetables, winter leaves and mustard dressing, then roast halibut with Jerusalem artichokes, spinach, hazelnuts and red wine veal sauce, culminating with ‘Epicuriana’ of Nahua chocolate, honeycomb, hazelnuts and goats’ milk ice cream, perhaps with a glass of 1980 Samos nectar from a lovingly curated selection of stickies.

NB. £15 per bottle or free corkage for each BYOB when purchasing a subsequent bottle from the list.

By Douglas Blyde.

Review 2016/17

Leave your reply

Food Type Cuisine: British

Glass PriceGlass from : £ 4.70 (125 ml)

+44 (0)20 7887 8825


Tate Britain



Most Recent Stories

Wine most popular Christmas gift but a third will regift

Wine remains the most popular alcoholic beverage to take to a Christmas party, with 59% citing it as their first choice, but a third of those that receive a bottle admit to "regifting" it to another, a survey by Bordeaux Wines has found.

Gaucho hires ex-Wines of Argentina marketing director to oversee wine list

Argentine steakhouse Gaucho has unveiled plans to re-establish itself as the leading Argentine wine specialist in the UK, following a tumultuous year where it was bought out of administration, bringing in ex-Wines of Argentina marketing director Andrew Maidment to oversee its wine list.

Stevie Parle’s Rotorino to close

Rotorino, chef Stevie Parle’s Italian restaurant in London’s trendy Dalston district, is to close its doors after five years in business.

Six new Master Sommeliers announced following exam resit

The Court of Master Sommeliers has announced six new Master Sommeliers, all of whom have now passed the gruelling exam twice after a scandal earlier this year stripped 23 newly-crowned candidates of their titles. 

The best wines from the 2018 Rioja Masters

Our latest Rioja Masters competition boasted the highest proportion of Master-winning wines in our tasting series. We reveal the best samples from this year's competition.