The Perry Vale

Restaurants, British Forest Hill
3 out of 5 stars
4 out of 5 stars
(16user reviews)

A smart new dining destination for Forest Hill, serving decent modern bistro fare.

Either stocks of filament bulbs and vintage school chairs are running low or a restaurant revolution is kicking off in Forest Hill. Giving the whole chalkboards and bare-brick schtick a refreshingly wide berth, The Perryvale is a smart, stylish bistro with a proper sense of occasion, occupying a small unit beneath a modern flat block.

Service is chipper and considerate touches abound – beer, all sourced from south-east London, comes in a chilled glass. While waiting for our table we tried a zesty, wheaty saison from Brew By Numbers at the small bar, and later Kernel Brewery’s aromatic Table Beer.

The food was average on our visit, with no one dish stealing the show. The pickled cucumber accompanying a dish of seared mackerel was too soft and vinegary to cut through the fatty fish, a steak ordered rare was nowhere near and a dessert of lemon tart came topped with powdery, brittle meringue. Even the crisp, skin-on fries lacked seasoning. Less showy dishes fared better – a cheeseburger and chips was as good as you’d get at the classier chains and – at £9.50 – cheaper than most of them, too.

Forest Hill folk should definitely investigate – it was still early days on our visit – but a lack of flair in the kitchen means anyone without an SE23 postcode may as well stay closer to home, even if that does mean slumming it with the same old shabby chic decor.


By: David Clack


Venue name: The Perry Vale
Address: 31a Perryvale
SE23 2AR
Transport: Forest Hill rail.
Price: £25 and under
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Average User Rating

4.3 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:8
  • 4 star:6
  • 3 star:1
  • 2 star:1
  • 1 star:0
1 person listening

I visited the Perry Vale on two separate occasions, one for Steak Night and the other for Burger Night, both offering good deals. I was quite disappointed with the burgers, we were told they would come out medium rare, but they came medium-well and the bun was quite dry. 'Seasonal Greens' was a bowl of warm slightly wilted lettuce with too much salt. However, the warm brownie with ice cream was lovely, just the right amount of gooey. The poor waitress was rushed off her feet with at least 12 tables to serve on her own on both occasions. They do have a nice beer and cocktail selection. 


A lovely new little bistro recently opened. It's so handy for meeting friends as it is located right by Forest Hill station. All the beers are locally sourced and the service is good. The decor is average compared to other place similar but the atmosphere is nice and a relaxing place for a chilled drink. Great to see decent places coming into the area!

Had a lovely Sunday lunch with three adults and three kids including two energetic 5 year olds and a baby. Service was friendly and responsive. The roast trout tasty, kids fish, chips, peas and beans generously proportioned and the kids ate it all which is always a good sign. Bloody Mary was properly seasoned and just the right level of spicy. A cosy, low key and relaxed nook in Forest Hill; probably misses the passerby footfall (it should be busier) as it's on the other side of the station away from the main drag.

Great food and cocktails, friendly knowledgeable staff, and regular offers and nights, an asset to the area!

Great food and cocktails, friendly knowledgeable staff, and regular offers and nights, an asset to the area!

Great food and cocktails, friendly knowledgeable staff, and regular offers and nights, an asset to the area!

Love this place tucked away on Forest Hill, really laid back atmosphere and amazing food.. perfect for date night and lazy sunday lunches

Amazing restaurant- delicious food at reasonable prices and a killer wine and cocktail list making this the best restaurant in the area

Lovely little place by the station. Make sure you start with a cocktail, delicious!

Friendly restaurant. Great, knowledgeable staff. Delicious, seasonal menu and an Awesome wine list with many available by the glass. Excellent transport links. Go.

I hesitate to praise this too much in case I can't get a table here in future! Lovely, well balanced dishes and very friendly and helpful staff. A sorely needed addition to the local scene.

Lovely food and service. The staff actually know what they're talking about with regards what's on the menu. The menu is small and well thought out and the wine and beer list is excellent. highly recommended!

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