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drunken oyster

Victoria bars

Fancy a pre-theatre tipple or a swift one before your train comes in? Choose from the best bars in Victoria

By Laura Richards

Whether you’re just passing through this busy part of London and fancy a quick one or you’re looking for a more regular base for post-work drinks with colleagues, Victoria has a spread of bars on offer. Choose from high-end hotel bars, arty cocktail basements and old-school wine and whisky houses for you to get cosy in.

RECOMMENDED: Find more fun nearby with our Victoria area guide

The best bars in Victoria

Balls Brothers

3 out of 5 stars
Bars and pubs Wine bars Victoria

A reliably old-school, no-nonsense wine bar, Balls Brothers has been going since the mid-nineteenth, century, but the Victoria branch is one from the chain with a more modern feel about it. Still, have no doubt that Old World wine still rules this roost.

The Bar and Lounge At The Goring

5 out of 5 stars
Bars and pubs Hotel bars Victoria

Pretend you’re in ‘Downton Abbey’ with a visit to the bar of superlative London hotel The Goring. A regal fireplace, deep red walls and wingback chairs set the scene for some very fine imbibing. The bar food menu is larger than your average – glazed lobster omelette, Lady Mary?

© Ming Tang Evans


4 out of 5 stars
Restaurants British Belgravia

Transport yourself to bonnie Scotland without leaving the Smoke. There’s tartan everywhere, and although many come to Boisdale for a slap-up Scotch supper, the whisky bar is William Wallace levels of heroic. Sample blends from the Highlands, the Lowlands and the bits in between.

Clarendon Cocktail Cellar

3 out of 5 stars
Bars and pubs Cocktail bars Pimlico

Sup on movie-themed cocktails in a subterranean setting, served with a side of popcorn, naturally. CCC is serving up the likes of an Air Plane, a Kill Bill and a Titanic (which hopefully won’t give you that sinking feeling). It’s a very cool setting with tunes by the likes of the Shins on the stereo. Kid yourself that you’re in Shoreditch.


The Drunken Oyster

3 out of 5 stars
Bars and pubs Cocktail bars Victoria

Three words: spritzes on tap. The bar up above Jason Atherton Italian Hai Cenato is a bold and brash place for aperitivo time, where orange drinks abound. The vermouth and tonic menu is delightful, and bar snacks including pizzas are whipped up in the kitchen below. Capish?


3 out of 5 stars
Bars and pubs Gastropubs Victoria

You know what’s missing from the local pub? An in-house hair salon. Not the case at Greenwood, a multi-purpose tipple house, where cocktails come with a side of coiffuring. It also doubles as a sports bar (we kid you not): there’s a plush place to watch the game with craft beer in hand sitting up on the first floor.


Munich Cricket Club

3 out of 5 stars
Bars and pubs Craft beer pubs Westminster

Victoria or Bavaria? It’s a question you’ll find yourself asking at oddly named Munich Cricket Club, a beer hall modelled on those straight out of Germany. Order two-pint steins at £10 a pop to wash down schnitzel or a sausage platter. If oompah’s your thing (and it is, of course) head here on Thursdays.

Naughty Piglets
© Luana Failla

The Other Naughty Piglet

4 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Global Victoria

Brixton’s much-loved wine bar Naughty Piglets has made a dramatic leap into theatreland, as the bar at Lloyd Webber’s Other Palace theatre. Natural wine dominates the list, with a vast range of options by the bottle if you’re after more than a pre-show tipple. The food menu is just as enticing.



Bars and pubs Wine bars Victoria

Vagabond’s nifty machines that dispense wine by smartcard have spread their way across town, with a total of six bars now in the capital. This Victoria branch is the biggest and offers the same reliable quaffing, with wines grouped by depth of flavour rather than by region. Grape stuff.

© Simon Leigh

Zander Bar

3 out of 5 stars
Bars and pubs Victoria

Inside Victoria’s Bank Restaurant, Zander Bar deserves a shout-out for its claim to have London’s longest bar. Hopefully that means you won’t struggle to find a seat when cocktail hour hits. Order from a list of classics or stick to a spritz with a twist.


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