Soho Hotel Refuel Bar and Restaurant
4 Richmond Mews, W1D 3DH
WLC Rank : 305
Glass from : £ 10 (175 ml)
The Refuel Bar and restaurant within the “swanky” Soho Hotel (fourth venue of the Firmdale Hotels group) is described by the Telegraph as “an electric hangout where sparks fly even when not busy”. The same sparks are not to be found on its wine list.
‘Perfunctory’ is the best description that can offered. Refuel’s list is not without some good-quality bottles, but this is sheer box-ticking to our mind: key French appellations? Check. Provence rosé? Check. Mendoza Malbec? Check. Pinot Grigio? Gavi? Checkity check. No one is showing much in the way of oenophilia here.
The cruelly perceptive critic Tanya Gold observed in her Spectator review of Refuel that the Soho Hotel is an actor’s hotel: “They come for press junkets,” she says, “and interviews that reveal nothing because there is nothing to reveal; in fact, I have long suspected that this consuming nothingness … is the point of them; anything to evade reality and bring forth the realm of stupid. So it doesn’t matter that the Soho Hotel doesn’t know what it is; that is a benefit, quite possibly a design.”
This would explain the wine list.
As befits a Soho media hangout, there’s a fair bit of Champagne, and here the wine offering redeems itself a bit, with seven vintage bottlings and eight Champagnes available by the glass.
Also, the New World offerings, though pretty much limited to one per country, are half-decent: Dömane Wachau Grüner from Austria and Hatzidakis Assyrtiko from Greece, for example. Most wines are also available by the glass, though the list is stubbornly short.