Balls Brothers

Bars and pubs, Wine bars St James's Park
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Balls Brothers

Founded by Henry Balls in the mid 19th century, Balls Brothers is still run by the family. Venues range from traditional drinking dens populated by claret-swilling gents to the minimalist banquettes of the self-styled gastro-bars of the Lewis + Clark chain (in all there are 15 bars, plus the seven branded under the Lewis + Clark name). Balls Brothers also owns Gow’s, a restaurant near Liverpool Street station, and Mulligans, an Irish-themed bar in Mayfair. 

Across the group, sandwiches dominate the menu, but there might also be main-course options like battered haddock or ribeye steak. Balls Brothers Victoria is one of the branches with a more modern feel. 

The corner site has attractive outdoor seating for warmer weather, and a generously proportioned back bar. It’s a useful after-work venue in an otherwise poorly served area. Balls Brother's wine lists are admirably free from big brands, but the same list is replicated at every bar. 

The Old World dominates, although the selection of claret keeps things youthful and avoids the classic British taste for past-their-best vintages. Spanish reds are well featured and the Chablis Premier Cru Vaillon 2000 from Daniel-Etienne Defaix at £35 is very well priced for a mature wine from a great vintage. (The Lewis + Clark bars have more enterprising global lists, although their reluctance to list vintages for all the wines is frustrating.)


Venue name: Balls Brothers
Address: 50 Buckingham Palace Road
Transport: Tube: Victoria tube/rail
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Average User Rating

3.4 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:3
  • 4 star:0
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  • 1 star:2
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I only popped into Balls Brothers for a last minute drink and catch up with a friend who I met from Victoria. I have always struggled finding a nice place for drink near the station- not really keen on the packed pubs around. 

We stumbled across Balls Brothers and so glad we did. We were seated immediately and were offered table service, with a great recommendation on a bottle of white wine which didn't break the bank. 

The surroundings were beautiful and even on a busy Saturday you could still have a conversation and not struggle to hear.

One glass of wine in we also ordered a sharing board and again couldn't fault the friendly service, the food was great and just enough to fill us up and compliment the wine. Ended up staying there for three hours as we were having such a nice time. 

Awful place! I went to Balls Brothers in Victoria and the staff was rude and the food sickening. I will NEVER go back!

I recently visited Balls Brothers Victoria for colleagues leaving do are experience was very positive. When we arrived we were greeted at the door by a host who took us to a very spacious are in the back bar. We had pre-arranged for food and drinks to be served at different intervals. The night could not have gone better, the staff were very helpful, fast and efficient. The food was lovely, we had several of the sharing platters. The night was a success and we will be holding future events at Victoria.

Balls Brothers falls alarmingly short of the "upmarket" bar it strives to be. The food is awful. The drink are extremely overpriced. The service is terrible. I have eaten at Balls Brothers Victoria several times now, and every single time there has been something wrong with the order. Be it running out of particular items on the menu (at the start of lunch service no less!), or incompetent waitresses getting the order wrong, Ball Brothers really does do everything in it's power to assure you do not have a pleasant experience. I would not recommend this as a) a restaurant, or b) a bar, to anyone. Poor service and food couples with high prices make this one of THE places to avoid in London.