Coal Vaults

Words by Ian Cameron on 05-Sep-2013

Address: 187b Wardour Street, London, W1F 8ZB, United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)20 7434 1550
Website: view Coal Vaults’ website
Door: Open door/walk-ins
Style: Restaurant bar
Food: Set menu


This small basement bar and restaurant in Soho articulates the increasing number of venues where food and drink are just as important as each other, and there's some genuine originality at work here. The two-room cellar (clue's in the name - it used to hold coal to heat the buildings above) is home to a creative list of cocktails with a culinary bent - cognac is paired with Szechuan pepper; red clover meets red plum and is paired with gin; and cider vinegar meets dry fried tea with rye whiskey. There are a handful of seats at the bar, but you may prefer one of the intimate booths sit into the deepest recesses.

Candlelight is reflected off the copper-topped bar, while the timber, leather and old brickwork help bring this basement back to life with bags of atmosphere. Light streaming in dramatically through glass blocks in the pavement above while the open kitchen provides some activity. A neighbourhood vibe, a warm welcome and a cosy feel suggest this is somewhere for a date or a relaxed evening with a small group of friends