WC - Wine & Charcuterie

© 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: Underneath Clapham Common tube station
Opening hours: 6-11.30pm Mon-Thur; 6-12.30am Fri; noon-12.30am Sat; noon-10.30pm Sun.
Transport: Tube: Clapham Common

Average User Rating

4.5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:1
  • 4 star:1
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
3 people listening
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!