It’s very easy to feel intimidated when faced with a wine list the length of a short novel. The good news for aspiring oenophiles? You don’t always have to go to fine-dining restaurants with crisp white tablecloths and vast cellars to experience the very best London wine lists. At The Egerton House Hotel, we’re lucky to have an enviable wine cellar of our own, featuring a variety of carefully selected bottles, from the Grand Crus of Burgundy and Bordeaux to rare vintages from lesser-known regions. To help you through the gamut of options out there, we’ve compiled the best London wine lists we could find. Minus the snooty sommeliers.
Wine-lovers in search of a great bottle of bubbly without the prohibitive price tag should check out hot dog experts Bubbledogs, who stock a commendable collection of lesser-known champagnes at accessible prices. Drinks start from £6 for a glass of cava and £6.50 for a glass of Champagne and provide a great opportunity to sample the work of smaller producers such as the Laherte Frères, Blanc de Blancs, Non Dosé or the Ulysse Collin, Blanc de Blancs, Extra Brut.
If you’re looking for a great selection of vin à la française, then head to Balthazar. The wine list here is dedicated to all things Gallic, ranging from the Jura wines of Jacques Puffeney to Charly Thévenet’s natural Cru Beaujolais Régnié, and is a great showcase for the country’s modern wine scene.
28°-50° Wine Workshop & Kitchen
At 28°-50° Wine Workshop & Kitchen, the list offers 30 wines by the glass, meaning that the emphasis is on drinkability and small producers rather than big (often expensive) names. The small servings of wines such as the Fer Servadou of Domaine du Cros Marcillac and the Zagreus, St-Dimitar Mavrud (Bulgaria) and their accompanying low prices, create the perfect environment for some wonderful food and wine parings.
Sager + Wilde
Sager + Wilde is the place to go if you’re looking to try something new. The wine list changes daily, and is designed to be easily navigable and affordable. However, the flat £20 mark up on every bottle means this is the place to try that fine wine you’ve been hankering after…
Quality over quantity is the order of the day at Clos Maggiore.Their extensive and well-priced by-the-glass list is a great excuse to taste numerous wines like the Villa Crespia Miolo Franciacorta NV or the 2010 Mas de Daumas Gassac IGP Pays de l’Hérault. The rest of the list comprises an appealing mix of the classical and the slightly more adventurous.
The wine list at Lutyens is a welcome antidote to many pretentious and esoteric London wine lists. It has an excellent by-the-glass selection including the Gewurztraminer Les Folastries (Josmeyer), and readdresses the cultural imbalance by including wine from countries like Japan and Luxembourg.
The Quality Chop House
If you despair of over-the-top wine descriptions then the list at The Quality Chop House will be a soothing balm to your frazzled brain. Named ‘The Best Short Wine List in Europe’ by The World of Fine Wine Magazine, the list is devoid of long-winded annotations, enabling you to spend less time deciding and more time drinking.
Despite earlier promises, it would be wrong to bring together the best London wine lists without including The Greenhouse.Their wine list has won the Wine Spectator Grand Award every year since 2005, and for good reason. The wine cellar here boasts an impressive collection of Bordeaux and Burgundy wines but it’s the daring selection from lesser-known regions that gives The Greenhouse a place on this list.
Header image © Refat Mamutov/iStock/Thinkstock
Book your table at The Egerton House Hotel, or our sister hotel The Milestone in Kensington now to enjoy a wonderful selection of fine wines, including those from our Bouchard Finlayson vineyard in South Africa.