WC - Wine & Charcuterie

  • Bars and pubs
  • Wine bars
46 Love It
© Josh Kearns
© Josh Kearns
© Josh Kearns
© Josh Kearns
© Josh Kearns
© Josh Kearns
© Josh Kearns
© Josh Kearns

The picket fence goes up by 6pm, partioning off a little patch of ground next to Clapham Common’s tube station. The folding tables then fill up in minutes with glass-clinking sybarites, attracting the stares of zipped-up commuters. A former public toilet, integral to the Tube station but derelict for years, has reopened as a wine bar, and transformed its tiny outside space into a new drinking terrace.

The ‘WC’ sign on the Tube station building now refers to Wine & Charcuterie, the winning bid out of 450 applicants to redevelop this unusual subterranean and above ground space. The bar is the latest instalment of the Clapham Old Town Regeneration Project, £2.8 million’s worth of wider pavements, traffic calming and turning old lavs into venues where you’re encouraged to swirl and sniff (as opposed to being cautioned or charged for doing so).

Down the wide stairs it still looks and feels like a Victorian convenience, albeit a sanitised one. The wall tiles and floor mosaics are still there, the cubicle doors have been laid flat and turned into tables within secluded and low-lit booths. Other fixtures and fittings are also reclaimed Victoriana, much of it from a nearby school. It’s cosy and appealing.

A score of wines are sold, with plenty of choice in the £7 to £10 per glass range: no bargain, but also not taking the piss. The styles are diverse, from a dry German Riesling to a Bulgarian Merlot. Service is enthusiastic and engaging. Cheese platters start at £13, charcuterie plates at £12, and both are better than bog standard. Ed’s cock scratchings might be enough to salve that itch at only £3.25 per bag; savoury and a good match with wine, they’re pennies well-spent. Pay a visit.

Venue name: WC - Wine & Charcuterie
Address: Clapham Common South Side
Opening hours: 6-11.30pm Mon-Thu; 6-12.30am Fri; noon-12.30am Sat; noon-10.30pm Sun.
Transport: Tube: Clapham Common
Do you own this business?

Average User Rating

4.7 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:5
  • 4 star:2
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
1 person listening

I think most people might associate Clapham Common with evenings full of excessive drinking with the fresh out of uni crowd, crawling from Bison and Bird to Infernos or Venn Street Records to Café Sol, but hidden amongst the abundance of bars is Wine and Charcuterie, a 100 year old converted water closet underneath Clapham Common tube station.

As a seasoned Clapham Commoner, I’d planned to start an evening with cocktails at WC, but with such a small capacity, this didn’t quite pan out. I decided to go for a casual late afternoon drink another Saturday instead and I actually preferred it. There was no queueing, we managed to get a whole booth to ourselves as it wasn’t overly busy and the waiters were lively and attentive.

I tried a couple of cocktails from their minimalist menu – a vanilla and olive oil gin fizz and a WC espresso martini, both delicious and I really enjoyed relaxing beneath street level in a candlelit booth. The wine list had a good range and we were very tempted by the food menu, but had to resist as we were still full from Borough Market earlier that day.

The place is truly unique and full of character, with drain grates in the ceiling open to the street, original blue and white tiles and velvet drapes. It really is a fantastic snug place for drinks and nibbles and I will definitely return to try the charcuterie!

lauren h

One of my favourite places in London! Amazing food, amazing wine and brilliant staff/service.

Emma S

This place is brilliant. You can never have enough loo bars in London (well ok, that may be up for debate), but this one stands head and shoulders above the rest. Don't worry, it's been thoroughly scrubbed. An excellent wine list, yummy meat and cheese boards with unlimited crackers (I did not push this to ridiculous proportions but did get a couple of free cracker refills), and great atmosphere. Last time I went on a Friday there was a guy with a guitar crooning softly by the actual toilet (some of the porcelain was left for obvious reasons). Get there early as it gets busy but pull up a pew to wait for a spot if it looks likely. It's well worth the wait. 

Derbhil G

Great atmosphere, food and wine. In a cool old building that has been imaginatively restored to far more than its former glory. Well worth a visit.

Sherraine H

The WC is a great venue and fantastic use of space. It's dark interiors set a slightly gothic scene and the outside accommodates sunshine drinking. However if you want to hire an area for a birthday please be aware that they don't have a bar licence which means people can't stand and talk, everyone has to be seated which makes it hard to mingle on your birthday. I wasn't told this so just making others aware especially of you hire the booths. This place is more suitable for small groups up to about six people.

helen o

Been there and done it at WC LOL! But on a more serious note, WC is a great addition to what is gradually turning Clapham into a more mature and less run off the mill dinning destination as many new experimental and quirky independent restaurants continue to pop up there. So thumbs up for independents such as WC who have  converted a derelict 100 year old Station toilet and outside space into an attractive foodie destination. The wines were excellent and the choice of cheeses and meats delightful. If you're one for real alfresco urban dining then sitting out on the edge of Clapham Common with people and cars zooming past would be paradise. Otherwise I think the outside space could be made more appealing but i understand much of it is still work in progress as the space is more pop-up than permanent. Great place and a counter to the many mid-market chains that have recently invaded nearby Brixton and are rubbing the cool gloss of Brixton Village!