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Peckham area guide

The best restaurants, bars, pubs, cafés, shops and things to do in Peckham

© Ming Tang-Evans

'Is Peckham the new Shoreditch?' The correct answer, of course, is 'who cares?' You just have to spend a day in the area to see how much it's got to offer. Highlights include a bargain cinema, Thai street food, one of the city's best clubs, a tantalizing chocolate shop and plenty more besides. Put the hype to one side and get to know our favourite places in the neighbourhood.

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Restaurants

Pedler

Peckham’s seen a wave of pioneering restaurants opening on its more gentrified streets, paving the way for operations in less obvious parts of SE15. Peckham Rye, dominated by minicab companies, money-transfer outposts and hair-weave shops, is an example of less charted dining territory. But Pedler has come and conquered.  The decor has a whiff of the ski slopes about it: with its long bar, battered wooden floors, warm glow, and lettered mirrors, you half expect to see people clunking past in snow boots. The narrow space is crammed with tables – the most atmospheric around the bar, where the team keeps apace with orders from the all-gin cocktail list. There’s also a cute alcove reserved for groups.  The menu offers Modern British dishes packed with seasonal ingredients and well-judged flavours – cases in point were a juicy salad of red (Russian) kale, golden beetroot, blood orange and tart ricotta, and ‘quacking cherries’ (balls of confit duck covered in cherry-flavoured gel to resemble the fruit). Delicately battered gilt-head bream was served with beautifully cooked chips, but two gargantuan lamb chops were a mixed bag – one supremely tender, one tough. For dessert, a delectable nougat parfait mixed gooey meringue with sugared hazelnuts – we ignored the charred pineapple garnish. Staff are well-versed, efficient, and – in true Peckham style –  straightforward in their approach. This neighbourhood restaurant could well tempt outsiders to the Rye.

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Bars and pubs

The Beer Shop

Despite the name, this lovely bar and shop – one of several independent gems in Nunhead – doesn’t look anything like an off-licence. Its website labels it a ‘micro-pub’, but its colourful, light-filled, open-plan front room is probably best described as a drop-in centre for beer-lovers. The tiny back counter dispenses three draught beers – on our visit, these included two pale ales, namely Buxton Brewery’s sharp, citruous Moor Top, and Northern Monk’s smooth, fruity Monacus. In addition, there’s a 60-strong list of bottled beers, ciders and porters – mostly (but not all) from London brewers, all with clear, succinct tasting notes. These range from familiar names such as Brewdog or Camden Town Hells to properly niche offerings such as By The Horn’s Sour to the People, a burgundy-aged, sour-mash vintage beer, or 750ml bottles of Siren’s blended Ratchet artisan ale. The husband and wife owners answer questions without patronising, and offer samples without evangelism – don’t expect Camra-style geekiness here. You can enjoy a leisurely pint without engaging with anyone, but if you’re up for some informal nerdiness, they organise regular Meet the Brewer sessions with local beermakers.   The Beer Shop seems happy to be used as an extension of locals’ living rooms, with weekly BYO takeaway nights, where you bring your own food but they supply the beer – a clever flip on the usual approach to BYO. But The Beer Shop also sells everything to take away – even draught beers in two-pin

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Restaurants

Old Spike Roastery

Not only do the Old Spike Roastery do their own in-house roasting, but they also work with the homeless, helping to house and train them up for permamnent employment.

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Shopping

Hop Burns & Black

Hop Burns & Black, frankly, is a pretty cool bottle shop. Tucked away in leafy East Dulwich, this modest store stocks over 300 international beers, a handful of hot sauces, ciders, wines, coffee beans and two crates full of well-cared for vintage vinyls. They also provide a service called 'flagon fill', so you can grab an unmarked, stoppered bottle and fill it with one of their four draught beers. 

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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PeckhamPlex

Few cinemas evoke quite as much misty-eyed fondness among South London film fans as the PeckhamPlex. It ain’t fancy, and you’d struggle to describe the décor in entirely favourable terms, but this rough-around-the-edges Peckham institution, which recently celebrated its twentieth anniversary, has character and charm in spades. The only thing you really need to know about this place is that tickets are just £4.99 – or £5.99 if you want to see a film in 3D – all day, every day of the week. That’s it: no nonsense, no frills, no faff. The programme focuses on the latest big releases as well as the odd smaller film, which you can read about on the cinema’s delightfully gif-heavy blog.

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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See the full results of this year's Love London Awards

Restaurants in Peckham

Restaurants

Begging Bowl

Venue says: Try our lunch menu at £15 for three courses. Available Monday to Friday.

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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Restaurants Book online

Peckham Bazaar

A ‘pan-Balkan’ part-time pop-up in Peckham has become a must-go place to eat - just check it'll be open before you visit.

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Restaurants

No 67

A bright, soaring space, with lovely food offered at good value. Impressive on all fronts. (Special offer available!)

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Bars and pubs

Peckham Refreshment Rooms

A little slice of Barcelona has landed in Peckham – a slick, pared-down, friendly little tapas bar where you might swig a quick beer or down a carafe of wine and grab some tasty snacks before (or after) a big night out. With raw plaster walls, scruffy poured concrete floor and a big slab of glossy burgundy MDF for a bar, its cheap and cheerful vibe belies the speed at which you can rattle through 50 quid on the little platters of pan-European nibbles. The basic menu consists of Spanish cheeses, meats and snacks, with a few interesting southern European dishes. More enticing is the list of daily-changing seasonal specials, such as an exquisite dandelion, broad bean and goat’s cheese salad; spears of lemon and butter-drenched asparagus with a heavenly curd dip; some tasty (though marginally overcooked) king prawns with garlic and tangy chorizo; and a skewer of monkfish served with divine saffron potatoes and a sprinkling of shrimps and clams. Puddings – a densely delicious pot au chocolat, and a dreamy lemon posset served with a crumbling disc of shortbread – were a resounding success, as was the friendly and attentive service. The restaurant opens for coffees and croissants at 7am on weekdays and closes at 1am at the weekend. The hipness quota really cranks up in the evening, attracting Peckham’s edgy art scene/boho crowd. Reviewed by Veronica Simpson

Time Out says
  • 3 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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See our full guide to restaurants in Peckham

Peckham highlights

Nightlife

CLF Art Cafe (The Bussey Building)

One of the many sources of Peckham pride, this incredible post-industrial building is simply one of London's best venues. Saved from demolition in 2007 by a dedicated team from community group Peckham Vision, the CLF Art Cafe (known by pretty much everyone as the Bussey Building) is multi-floored concrete block that has thrived as a warehouse-style club at night and a top arts venue during the day. Top promoters consistently bring in some of the best names on the cutting-edge, underground and alternative dance scenes, across pretty much any genre you care to name, but leaning primarily towards house, deep techno, garage and disco. The Bussey also hosts regular nights that offer more accessible sounds, including Zonk Disco and The South London Soul Train, making it one of the best venues in London for funk and soul club nights. All of which means that it's one hell of a draw the whole year round, but especially in the summer, when the roof gets thrown open for alfresco parties. The building's theatre has links to the Royal Court and its admirable Theatre Local scheme, which helps the theatre dilute the effect of its rarefied Sloane Square address and reach out to more diverse audiences. But the multi-floored post-industrial space has become a dynamic arts centre in its own right, and now programes everything from art installations and new plays to classics and opera.

Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Art

South London Gallery

On this site for over a century, the SLG became one of the main showcases for the emerging Young British Artists in the 1990s. Still one of the capital's foremost contemporary art venues, the gallery has exhibited work by shows by established international figures such as Gilbert & George, Anselm Kiefer and Gavin Turk. The SLG also profiles the work of younger and mid-career artists, past exhibitions include Alice Channer, Ryan Gander and Oscar Murillo and group shows bring together works by established and lesser-known British and international artists. The gallery also presents integrated education projects for children, young people and adults, and an ongoing residency programme provides opportunities for artists to stay in the SLG's artists' flat.

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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PeckhamPlex

Few cinemas evoke quite as much misty-eyed fondness among South London film fans as the PeckhamPlex. It ain’t fancy, and you’d struggle to describe the décor in entirely favourable terms, but this rough-around-the-edges Peckham institution, which recently celebrated its twentieth anniversary, has character and charm in spades. The only thing you really need to know about this place is that tickets are just £4.99 – or £5.99 if you want to see a film in 3D – all day, every day of the week. That’s it: no nonsense, no frills, no faff. The programme focuses on the latest big releases as well as the odd smaller film, which you can read about on the cinema’s delightfully gif-heavy blog.

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
Read more
Shopping

Peckham Farmers Market

Serving the residents of Peckham, Dulwich and Camberwell for 14 years, Peckham Farmers Market is a FARMA certified weekly affair. Run by the Urban Farmers Market and offering fresh, home grown produce all under a covered roof, traders include Flour Power City Organic Bakery, Burscombe Cliffe Farm and Alham Wood Cheeses. The majority of vendors are organic, biodynamic or otherwise, and although such phrases often imply that you’ll be paying through the nose, we’re promised that all produce is fairly priced.

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Bars and pubs in Peckham

Bars and pubs

Gowlett

An antique wood-panelled, minimalist boozer, selling the best pizza for miles around.

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Bars and pubs

Bar Story

Enjoy cocktails (two-for-one between 6-7pm) and stonebaked pizza beneath a railway arch at this popular spot. (A separate bar, Peckham Springs, is hidden behind.)

Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Victoria Inn

A dolled-up pub in the posher part of Peckham, offering a broad range of beers and bar food with a twist.

Time Out says
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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Bars and pubs

The Montpelier

Enjoy a pint at the Montpelier – they have a backroom cinema, too.

Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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See all bars and pubs in Peckham

Comments

7 comments
Emalena O
Emalena O

The Dolls House Peckham on Clayton road is a must visit! The bar is beautiful, the cocktails amazing and the restaurant serves up a tasty selection of British Classics! Their staff are great, I went to the one Islington a while back and am so pleased they have come to Peckham. 

Alice A
Alice A

ALI BABA JUICE on rye lane 

Tim G
Tim G

A few more pins to drop in the area: Cafe Viva (Choumert Rd), Cool Cats Cafe (Southampton Way), Park Life Cafe (Burgess Park) Cinnamon Tree Bakery (Peckham High St) PeckhamPlex (£5 cinema, all day, every day? Yes, please) Five-star Jerk Chicken (with a grand rating of 1 by the hygiene office) ...That crappy old pub near the Morrison's car park...

kate heaps
kate heaps

The beautiful Nunhead cemetery should surely be in your review, offering overgrown woodland, a place for reflecting on life, death and everything in between, offering respite from the business of Rye Lane. With cemetery tours on offer at weekend's and a fantastic cemetery open day where London's Goths go to town in May.

Larrikin Mills
Larrikin Mills

Peckham Market is on every Sunday at Bar Story - it's the perfect hipster one-stop shop for quirky products from local traders and designers including "Made in Peckham" homewares and clothing. Not a cupcake or homemade bunting to be spotted in this market, no thanks!

becca moore
becca moore

You missed rye lane - where you can buy food from every land and there's always a poster advertising fresh peruvian hair which intrigues me Also the Dish and Spoon Cafe, the new Cinnamon Bakery and the coffee van in front of Peckham library. Review book shop is great too And just across the ry Nunhead goes from strength to strength with Papa Bear, Bambuni,Sopers and The Old Nun's head I am proud to have lived in SE15 for ten years- Long live Peckham.

C.
C.

Thanks Time Out, fantastic job at aiding the speed of gentrification in the area!