High summer on Clapham Common, and everyone and everything is out – the sun, the bare legs, the six-packs (both kinds). But when the bevvies are finished it’s time to head to the pub.
Every year Clapham’s bars face onslaughts as sunburned and inebriated groups descend on them like Visigoths on Rome. This was a new experience for No 32, which opened days before the hottest weekend of the year so far. Yet the staff coped well, smiling and keeping pace with the orders in a packed bar.
Visit No 32 on a less busy day and you’ll better appreciate the french windows opening on to the street, the first-floor terrace overlooking the common, the chicly modern interior. It’s a very attractive refurbishment of a modern pub, and even by Clapham Old Town’s high standards it’s pitched above the norm. Most draught beers will set you back nearly a fiver, the house wines are £20 a bottle; an Aperol spritz cocktail costs £9.50.
The pub grub menu plays safe with all-day brunch, burgers, salads, steak, but our dishes exceeded expectations, and justified the prices. No 32 opens at 9am with a breakfast menu, making mornings the best time to bag a prime spot on that roof terrace. Just be sure to leave before the Common drinkers start rolling in.
|Venue name:||No 32 The Old Town|
32 The Pavement
|Opening hours:||Mon-Wed 9am–11.30pm; Thu 9am–midnight; Fri, Sat 9am–1am; Sun 9am-10.30pm|
|Transport:||Clapham Common tube|
|Price:||Meal for two with drinks and service: around £70|
|Do you own this business?|
Average User Rating
3.8 / 5
- 5 star:14
- 4 star:9
- 3 star:6
- 2 star:2
- 1 star:4
I visited No.32 The Old Town during their opening weekend with my girlfriend and some mates from uni. We had booked a table for dinner at 8pm and were surprised to be told when we arrived that they were offering 50% off food all weekend! We were shown upstairs to the amazing roof terrace by the general manager who was very welcoming and had a drink in the sunshine before being shown to our table.
We ordered a charcuterie board to share and then each had a main course, the food was delicious and the waitress was extremely helpful, I had the chicken schnitzel and highly recommend it.
We stayed for a good few hours after dinner to enjoy the atmosphere and good music. We will definitely be going back!
Best place in Clapham to date!! Hip and funky, an eclectic mix of styles done with superb taste! Classy, excellent food and surprisingly cheap drinks! Crowd is very stylish, making for a very cool vibe! Roof terrace is amazing, reminds of New York hip places...Just what the area needed!
Awesome place, busy, good looking people, very friendly and polite staff, quick service, excelent food and drink! I had the salmon salad (one of the best salad I ever had) and jug of 'Elderflower and earl grey fizz drink' and jug of 'the fruit cup', both very good, great prices as well. Would definately come back! Well done
Great evening here for cocktails & nibbles upstairs on the terrace, over looking the common, great spot for outdoor drink in the summer! Recommended
Drop by this place as I heard about the discount 50%, love soft launches! Had a couple of Old Fashioned up stairs on the amazing terrace, downstairs look great for al fresco dinning, over looking Clapham Common, this place looks really good! Next time must try the food, had nibbles, and was impressed!
If you can manage to get a table on the terrace, five star all round. Unfortunately, very tricky on the weekends and near impossible on a sunny day. Worth popping to in the week if you get a chance, especially when the sun is shiny. I've been to no 32 numerous times, for drinks, coffee and lunch. Been very impressed with all, although service can be iffy.
I ordered a steak medium rare and it came out well done. I also had to re-order my tea three times as they kept bringing me the wrong tea despite me pointing to it on the menu. Worst of all, after drinking unflavoured water for most of the night, I then was given a glass of cucumber water. I’m allergic to cucumber! When I asked for water without cucumber, the waiter actually rolled his eyes at me! Food and wine was good, but not worth the price
Cool bar staff, cool drinks in a cool location. Definitely best atmosphere for a good time in Clapham!
The roof top is just amazing, the style of the venue is great, delicious wine and bloody marys on a sunday. Could do bigger portions, for brunch it is just so small, one piece of far too toasted sourdough has been consumed on too many occasions...
Visited No. 32 on Friday night for some early dinner and a few drinks. We arrived at 6pm and managed to grab the last available table upstairs.
We started with beers and cider but were very disappointed with the beers on offer... nothing craft about it and even the normal options were expensive. The food was reasonable priced, and fairly nice although I've definitely had better pub meals. I'd go back for the atmosphere and drinks but probably wouldn't recommend it for dinner or if you are an avid craft beer lover.
There are few reasons lure me out of Zone 1... one is Food, Special Events and Friends - particularly friends with kids. So here we were catching up with a couple we hadn't seen in over a year as they have a two year old. Logistically, they know this area better, i.e. parking etc., so they chose this restaurant which turns out to be super friendly, good for families & pets and the clientele are all good looking! They served us promptly and our food was really well presented and fresh! I loved my veggie burger (i.e. it was a bean pattie) and my mate polished off his double meat patty burger with bacon. The mussels looked super fresh. The kid was happy with his mac'n'cheese (which the leftovers were polished off by his parents) and he absolutely loved his vanilla ice-cream with caramel fudge (even though his parents were trying to reduce the amount he actually ate). But - there wasn't a veggie option for doubled poached egg with hollandaise (it was either with ham or salmon). I guess I could have asked for a veggie version but I think it could easily be on the menu with spinach! Also the person who had the eggs royale felt his dish lacked size - he wanted two pieces of bread rather than just the one. Oh and the flat white was slightly burnt. HOWEVER, the raspberry posset was soooooo delicious! It's got that tartness that perfectly cuts thru the richness of the cream. Yum! Will find an excuse to go back for that!
Delicious no.32 brunch - the range with satisfy everyone tastes, packed with people a great vibe, a very chic addition to Clapham. Reminds me of soho house. Plus it's dog friendly whoop whoop
The staff are lovely and the bar upstairs is fantastic for cosy winter days drinking red wine and eating comfort food!
Not the best food by any means, but such a great spot for drinks. Lovely rooftop in the summer, cozy in the winter.
Nice fresh and modern with a great atmosphere. Great place to chill out with friends after a busy day or just kick back and relax on a weekend
All day favourite venue - no matter if you crave breakfast, lunch, dinner or just a drink - this bar does all of it and has got a great flair & ambience. Great to meet new people at the weekend & the best rooftop terrace in Clapham!
Excellent Food & Service (including at the bar) is ALWAYS brilliant!!! Roof terrace is the perfect sun trap in the summer and its super cozy inside in the winter. Really reasonably priced!!
I got utterly awful service here. Sat down at one table and was promptly moved on as it was reserved (though there was no sign to say so). Settled at another table, and when I was at the bar ordering tea, my friend was moved on again - this time to make way for a dj (that never appeared). Our table was moved into a tiny, cramped corner behind the bar - dangerous and wobbly with our tea, and with not enough room to fit our legs underneath. Later, we were asked to move again - back to the place we'd started. Ridiculous.
I went for the second time on Thursday night, and the location and ambience and rooftop terrace are all good etc etc, the food wasn't - added to which it's very overpriced for the quality. I had fishburger as a main which was around £11, on top of which you had to order chips separately at £3/£3.50, which is taking the p*** rather. The fishburger arrived: small and overcooked almost to the point of being burnt. My companion ordered two starters: calimari and ribs and said the ribs were not great. The service there is a weird mix of smiling faces but slow and distracted - the staff generally seem quite caught up with their own goings on rather than customer facing. You get the feeling they're quite pleased to be working there but your on their time, not the other way around. Just generally I think No.32 is trying to punch above its weight and doesn't measure up to the standard of food and service you expect from that kind of price pitch. Needs to pull socks up.
I was really excited to see how nicely No.32 had been designed and decorated. I was so disappointed on my first (and last) visit to received such dreadfully disorganised service.We had to ask at least 3 times for a food menu in the restaurant. It took 30 minutes for the drinks to arrive. When placing our order the staff member had absolutely no idea about what was on the menu and was unable to answer any of our questions relating to either the food or beverage menu. The Menu its self is rubbish, there is nothing unique about it at all, it is just your bog standard boring burgers and caesar salad type stuff. Eventually part of our food was delivered whilst the other part went to another table. Five minutes later after realising that they had put half on the wrong table, they then brought a half picked at plate from out neighbouring table to us. At this point we decided to leave and didn't eat what was left of our partially eaten food by another table. We did offer to pay for the beverages, but the manager was unable to find our order so let us off paying anything.
It is very clear that no training has been given to the staff in either customer service, food service or how to use internal systems. It will be a long time before I will attempt to come back here. Such a shame because it potentially has so much going for it.
Curious to see what had become of The Frog, wandered in with some good friends mid-week.
Admirably different but tables, chairs etc. cheap downstairs... which wouldn’t be any kind of issue if that was the look they were actually going for, and if drinks prices matched. That said, restaurant bit looks good, though food untested. Upstairs (illuminated by ridiculously out-of-place Grand Unionesque neon sign) was more enticing.
What's really put me off going again though was the manager conspicuously strutting around in a purple shirt like a redundant peacock (something the well-turned out, and generally very good, bar staff could clearly do without). Wouldn't have been a problem if he'd actually been of any use but after needlessly interrupting a conversation I was having with the barman when getting drinks, he later failed miserably to do anything about a friend who was utterly starved having just flown in from half way round the world. Why try to be the man with a plan if you can't even sort out a piece of bread in your own restaurant?! An equally ridiculous girl on the bar upstairs loudly saying ‘What DO you think you’re doing?’ when I had the audacity to look at the terrace once final orders had been called compounded annoyance at a set-up that basically lacks much maturity, let alone sophistication.
Drop the shambolic pretence, from decor to mannerisms, and perhaps you might average something worthwhile.
This place was terrible. The service was chaotic. Though sitting at the bar and ordering directly from the barman a 12.5% service charge was added to our drinks. We had to ask 3 times for our drinks and then the bill with the service charge came long before the drinks did. The price of food was far too much for the quality of it, the burger was cold on the inside when it arrived. This place looks like is has potential but getting 61p added onto your pint when you are sitting at the bar isn't going to go down well in Clapham, especially when there are many more places to go to.
Beer was fine, just under a fiver a pint, but sitting at the bar, many people were surprised at how much their drinks cost. Chap handed over £20 for a bottle of Sav Blanc, but it was £25. The house wine is £20. Men's loos moved upstairs and only two urinals - men hate to queue. I am sure it will evolve, especially if the food doesn't shift. The terrace upstairs is much improved, but for all the effort, it doesn't seem significantly better, so disappointing. Especially as I live next door.
Visited during the world cup so maybe not the best time to be reviewing a place but here goes..
This place is suffering from a bit of an identity crisis - it doesn't know if it wants to be a hipster bar/restaurant/cozy pub and so fails at bit at each. It doesn't have the charm of other pubs in the area, and lacks in character apart from the small roof garden. Restaurant wise there's no theme and standard locally is high so hard to beat.
Food is tasty and well presented but pricey (even for clapham) e.g £14.95 for a club sandwich. Service was very good (however don't charge 12.5% and then ask for a tip on top with the card reader...)
Decor wise - the big bar is nice, but the seating is downright weird (combination of granny wing chairs/ wooden benches) which all sum up this place not really knowing where its going. It doesn't really work for groups "(a lack of seating ) or for couples . Might pop in for a quick drink but unfortunately that is as far as it goes...
Snap up exclusive discounts in London
Time Out's handpicked deals — hurry, they won't be around for long...