Drink: Gordon’s Wine Bar

Time to Go Alfresco


As soon as the sun shines in the UK capital (it does happen, I promise) Londoners flock to Gordon’s Wine Bar.

Gordon’s is an unexpected gem in a generally touristy area, tucked away off busy Villiers Street – a cobbled road connecting the Strand and Embankment – in a basement beneath Kipling House. It was founded in 1890 by Angus “Staff” Gordon and, in a happy coincidence, has been owned and run by another Gordon family since 1975.

Don’t come here expecting to find a cocktail list or, heaven forbid, beer: the city’s oldest wine bar is all about the grapes. The food may be a little more eclectic: there’s a grill menu, a selection of small plates and even, on Sundays, a traditional roast. But look no further than the delectable spread of more than 20 cheeses. We’ll take a mild and creamy gouda, a smoked comté, and a dense and silky saint nectaire – oh, and don’t forget the bottle of rosé.

Truth be told, Gordon’s is a bar for all seasons: in winter, thirsty folk descend down stone steps into the cosy, wood-lined cellar and sip wine over rickety, candlelit tables. But when the weather improves and the wooden tables and chairs spring up in the slender courtyard outside, you know you’re in for a real treat. Some intrepid drinkers even smuggle their glasses into the adjacent park (you didn’t hear it from us).

Gordon’s Wine Bar, 47 Villiers Street, London, WC2N 6NE.

Photo: Gordon’s Wine Bar.

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