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Brixton area guide

Discover everything from charming independent restaurants to late night clubbing institutions with our guide to the best of London’s Brixton

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Situated smack bang in the centre of south London, Brixton has become a go-to haunt for foodies, clubbers, artists and rockers alike. This cultural mecca is filled with a sense of community, which is evident for anyone who has shopped in Brixton Village or enjoyed a drink with local residents outside the Ritzy cinema. And for those in search of a party, Brixton’s famous live venues, including the Brixton Academy and Hootananny, draw in the late night crowds.

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Restaurants in Brixton

Franco Manca
Restaurants

Franco Manca

The best pizza joint in London. 

Time Out says
5 out of 5 stars
Users say
4 out of 5 stars
Boqueria Tapas
Restaurants Book online

Boqueria Tapas

A modern menu that merits repeat visits.

Time Out says
5 out of 5 stars
Users say
4 out of 5 stars
Book online
Honest Burgers
Restaurants

Honest Burgers

This tiny burger joint is always packed. 

Time Out says
5 out of 5 stars
Users say
5 out of 5 stars
KaoSarn
Restaurants

KaoSarn

One of the biggest crowd-pullers.

Time Out says
4 out of 5 stars
Users say
3 out of 5 stars
More restaurants and cafés in Brixton

Things to do in Brixton

Brixton Market
Shopping

Brixton Market

A sensory fiesta. The air is thick with the sizzle of jerk chicken stalls.

Users say
5 out of 5 stars
Brixton Village
Shopping

Brixton Village

A hive of activity, with workshops, live music and queues of foodies.

Users say
5 out of 5 stars
Brockwell Park
Attractions

Brockwell Park

For sun worshiping, kite flying and dips in the outside pool.

Users say
5 out of 5 stars
Ritzy Cinema Brixton

Ritzy Cinema Brixton

Enjoy a drink and catch a movie at Brixton’s cultural hub.

Users say
5 out of 5 stars
Buy tickets

Pubs in Brixton

Crown & Anchor
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Crown & Anchor

A sedate distance from the jumble of loud music and fried chicken around Brixton station, the Cranchor’s bright sign glows enticingly. This smart pub’s long-but-narrow layout means that when it’s busy it feels very full indeed, but claim yourself a table (inside or on one of the picnic tables outside) and you’ll soon feel a part of the crowd. Visiting at off-peak times will allow you to spend time googling the niche breweries which feature among the many brews on tap and in bottle (or asking the helpful staff) – this is one of the best beer and ale pubs in London, which makes its incongruous location on an otherwise unloved section of Brixton Road even more incredible. A super place.

Time Out says
5 out of 5 stars
Users say
4 out of 5 stars
Book online
Commercial
Bars and pubs

Commercial

Since this review was published, The Commercial has undergone refurbishment. Time Out Eating & Drinking editors, March 2017. On a narrow bend opposite Herne Hill station, a short bus hop from Brixton, the Commercial is a pleasurable pub in which to spend some time. It’s one of the more modern Mitchells & Butlers pubs, not dissimilar in style to the Crown & Sceptre in Fitzrovia in the way it mixes old-fashioned pub culture with new school pub cooking and a comparatively enlightened approach to beer. Two expansive rooms of stripy furniture and contemporary colours, with Wi-Fi and board games, accommodate drinkers and diners, while a pie slice of back garden houses a handful of tables and umbrella heaters. A board in the spruced-up main bar proclaims the presence of 21 draught beers (including Red Stripe, Paulaner, Franziskaner, Sierra Nevada, Peroni and Beck’s Vier), three ciders and four ales (including Fuller’s London Pride and Sharp’s Doom Bar). Food stretches from bar snacks (fried chorizo, houmous) to larger, workaday meals (burgers, Sunday roasts); a Monday quiz diverts the locals.

Time Out says
4 out of 5 stars
Users say
3 out of 5 stars
Craft Beer Company
Bars and pubs

Craft Beer Company

The Craft Beer Company specialises in the more offbeat offerings from small, unusual, mostly British breweries. There are more than 1,000 breweries across the UK – the highest number since the early 1970s, according to the Campaign for Real Ale (Camra). In the last year, 158 have opened – most of these small, craft breweries creating thrilling and diverse beers bursting with aroma and flavour, some of them surprising and intoxicating in equal measure. This second branch of the Craft Beer Company is on a busy street market next to Brixton rail station, facing the Brixton Recreation Centre. Its neighbours include a pawnbroker, a Caribbean fast food van and some cafés populated only by locals. It’s a small bar, not very pub-like, with plate glass windows making this slightly gentrified corner site highly visible from the market. The high stools perch at small tables. If you prefer a bit more privacy, there’s space on the first floor. It’s the beers that make this a destination. There are up to ten lesser-known ales on tap, another 20 on keg, and scores more by the bottle. Start off on something easy-drinking such as a Dark Star Hophead from West Sussex, a golden ale (3.8 percent abv) with a hoppy haybale and elderflower aroma; then maybe graduate to The Chief IPA, a US-style India pale ale from the Ilkley Brewery in Yorkshire. The Chief is double-hopped, weighs in at 7 percent abv, and is dense with hints of treacle on the nose. The beers on tap are priced by strength: £3.40 a

Time Out says
3 out of 5 stars
Users say
4 out of 5 stars
Prince Regent
Bars and pubs

Prince Regent

Large airy pubs with an outdoor terrace (even one adjacent to a busy bus route) and plenty of room for pushchairs are always going to be popular in this area. Indeed, at weekends the Prince Regent gets so crowded with younger customers that it hosts a family Sunday lunch (serious roasts), and also sets aside a child-free upstairs room for those seeking some peace. As a pub, it’s a hit, with four guest ales, branded lagers and decent wine, while booths, books and board games clearly invite drinkers to linger. Regrettably, the food menu is limited and uninspiring, focusing on such predictable classics as burger, steak frites, sausage and mash, sea bass, fish pie, steak and ale pie (though on the day we visited they were out of pies and hadn’t come up with an alternative). Surprisingly, there is no children’s menu, though staff are happy to rustle up scrambled eggs, sausage and chips or any combination of that day’s ingredients. Our visit was rescued by some unexpectedly good rice dishes – a tasty kedgeree, a creamy risotto – and substantial salads.  

Time Out says
3 out of 5 stars
Users say
4 out of 5 stars
More great Brixton pubs

Hotels in Brixton

Hootananny
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Hootananny

This is hardly your average hostel. Hardcore party people and musos crash here, and no under 18s are allowed. 

Users say
4 out of 5 stars
Book online
Premier Inn London Brixton

Premier Inn London Brixton

Familiar budget comforts: luxury king-size Hypnos beds, flat screen TVs and decent showers.

Check prices
See the best hotels in Brixton

Bars in Brixton

Blinder
Bars and pubs

Blinder

A bar-within-a-bar out the back of Herne Hill’s medical-themed First Aid Box, Blinder has got a run-down Prohibition vibe, with ladders hanging over picnic tables and a couple of wooden barrels placed hither and thither. Concessions to the concept consist of a few retro lamps on a covered billiards table, some pistols dotted about (as you do) and subtle flashes of copper. It’s more ‘budget garage conversion’ than gangster’s paradise. Equally charming are the cocktails themselves, served up by an attentive and well-informed barman. First up, the 28 Wrays Later: a three-rum concoction, shaken up with passion fruit seeds and pineapple. It was as sharply refreshing as it was heady, served in a ceramic tankard and crowned with a flaming passion-fruit shell. I was advised against the sweet house manhattan, so wangled a less cloying version from the bar. With a mezcal kick and orangey bitterness, it was a superlative tipple. The ginger and pineapple caipirinha, meanwhile, was zingy and tart. Bar snacks, too, were fab: from coriander-seed-flecked beef jerky (served warm, and undoubtedly the best I’ve had) to a dinky plate of greaseless soft-shell crab. It’s not especially cheap given its south London location – cocktails hover around the £10 mark, and three mouthfuls of crab are £8.50 – but it’s very well done. Blinder by name, blinder by nature.

Time Out says
4 out of 5 stars
Shrub & Shutter
Bars and pubs Buy tickets

Shrub & Shutter

‘Brixton’s changing fast right now’, as Mike Urban, the local pundit behind Brixtonbuzz.com blog, sees it, ‘but not for all its residents’. And nowhere do we see this more clearly than opposite the daunting edifice of the Barrier Block (the vast Southwyck House), where in a down-at-heel shop parade, a trendy cocktail bar has replaced a part-time Caribbean restaurant.Booming hip hop greeted us on arrival, so loud we could barely hear each other speak, but the decibels clearly don’t deter the enthusiastic young chaps doing the bartending. An alchemist’s laboratory of tinctures, potions and spirits dominates the tiny and sometimes frenetic front room. Order an Autopilot (£8.50), and the citrous tequila blend in a delicate coupe glass is supplied with a DIY paper aeroplane kit; the Deerhunter (£9) – a variant on an old fashioned – comes with a miniature venison side nibble. But gimmicky though this may all be, the cocktails are expertly made: the Georgetown Negroni balances smoky aromas with the depth of El Dorado rum and ‘charcoaled’ Campari.  The front room only has a few high stools and counters, but the more spacious and private back room provides proper tables and chairs. Snacks chalked on a blackboard might include tiny plates of tuna carpaccio, garden salad, heritage tomatoes with soft burrata or cheese platters with dainty rye breads – all decent enough, but fairly pricy at a fiver each. There are wines and beers too, but the reason to come here is for the expertly made c

Time Out says
3 out of 5 stars
Users say
5 out of 5 stars
Buy tickets
Barrio Brixton
Bars and pubs Book online

Barrio Brixton

Venue says: “Join our week-long celebration of all things Peruvian with a dedicated tasting menu and pisco cocktails!”

Time Out says
3 out of 5 stars
Users say
3 out of 5 stars
Book online
Naughty Piglets
Restaurants

Naughty Piglets

Some time ago, the cider makers of France sat down to figure out a better way of marketing their boozy apple juice. ‘I know,’ piped up one. ‘We can call it “natural wine” and sell it abroad!’ This story about the origins of the drink don’t bear close scrutiny, but it would explain why so many ‘natural wines’ and ‘orange wines’ sold in the UK could pass for dry ciders in blind tastings. The term ‘vin naturel’ was revived in France in the 1980s to describe wines that use natural fermentation with little intervention in the winemaking process, often with unpredictable results. But there are also enthusiasts who love the wines’ distinctively different character. Fortunately, such wines – like cider – go well with steamed mussels or clams. And Margaux Aubry, the Lyon-born proprietor of Naughty Piglets in Brixton (pictured), is well aware of this. Her wine list is predominantly natural, with the remainder organic. The brief blackboard menu is prepared in the basement kitchen by Aubry’s husband, Joe Sharratt (pictured). Beside those plump steamed mussels in bonito butter are other classic small plates such as fatty duck rillettes, or a simple salad of black tomatoes topped with shavings of salted ricotta. Less expected is a remarkably good slab of Korean-style pork belly, steamed then grilled and served with a gochujang (chilli-miso) dip and crisp lettuce leaves. A good-sized portion costs a mere £9. Desserts are great too: scoops of chocolate mousse are served with crisp almond

Time Out says
4 out of 5 stars
Users say
5 out of 5 stars
More fun bars in Brixton

The perfect weekend in Brixton

Explore: Pop Brixton
Restaurants

Explore: Pop Brixton

Shipping containers and street food. 

Users say
5 out of 5 stars
Party: Phonox
Clubs

Party: Phonox

A sleek, dark dance cavern. 

Users say
4 out of 5 stars
Visit: Ritzy Cinema Brixton

Visit: Ritzy Cinema Brixton

Watch an indy at this Brixton institution. 

Users say
5 out of 5 stars
Buy tickets
Drink: First Aid Box
Bars and pubs Book online

Drink: First Aid Box

A bar specialising in ‘cure-all’ drinks. 

Time Out says
5 out of 5 stars
Users say
5 out of 5 stars
Book online

Comments

9 comments
theveganmagician s

Like magic?  On the 1st Wed of EVERY month there is a great adult evening magic show called Midweek Magic Mix.  Its at a tiny almost secret little theatre called The Illusioneer and its just up the road in Herne Hill.  BYOB and seats sell out quickly.  Tickets available here:  https://www.ticketsource.co.uk/alecthemagician

Tony

Near Brixton in Ferndale road, there is also the Chocolate Museum, it's free and you taste the chocolatier products, really nice. You can also try workshops but you will have to book it. http://thechocolatemuseum.co.uk/

Jazz

There is a really exciting new gallery just opened on Atlantic Road, it's called the'Knight Webb Gallery' and they have a show which features artists from across the world!

Formatge

It is a shame you really don't know the area, there are way better places than the very obvious ones you have mentioned. Brixton is the best town south of the river bar none

sel de meredith

I didn't make it to Brixton on my last London visit, but this fall (post-Olympix-craze), I plan to go back and check this out: http://www.smart-urban-stage.com/blog/post/brixton-pound/ The Brixton pound, the neighborhood's very own currency. Had heard about the Dutch doing something along these lines, very arty sort of thing, but I am interested to see it in action, as a way to stimulate the local economy. Pretty cool.

Mark

On the 4th May Joe Le Groove and Mark Dale get together to launch this free exciting brand new night Shatter Proof, at southwest London freshest new venue Electric Social. Both Mark Dale and Joe Le Groove have been involved in London’s underground scene for over 15 years, playing in clubs such as Egg, Pacha, Ministry of Sound, The Cross, Aquarium to name a few. On this night expect all kinds of audio and visual trickery, beginning at 8pm with electronic disco funk and taking a journey all the way thought to the freshest Tech House dance floor essentials. Joining them on the night for a guest set will be superstar producer and Dj Asad Rizvi, Reverberations label front man, playing his own very special blend of House. The bank holiday weekend starts here with Shatter Proof @ Electric Social on the 4th May. Remember it’s free admission, so please arrive early because we have special surprise, electronic disco DJs to start the night with and soon to be announced.

EXPLODING CINEMA!

The EXPLODING CINEMA 20th Birthday Party SHOW! Saturday October 29th The Dogstar, Brixton // 8pm till late • Membership £5 // Tube & Rail: Brixton // Before “Pop-Up”cinema, before Vimeo, before even YouTube, there was a place where independent filmmakers could screen their work to a popular audience without selection, censorship or submission fee. A place free from the ‘broadcast quality’ of commercial media and the elite cliques of the Art academy. A convivial democracy which first revealed the utopian secret : a short film made by an amateur with no budget and domestic technology could be better than a Hollywood feature or an Art gallery masterpiece. Twenty years after the first show in a squatted sun tan oil factory in Brixton, after hundreds of regular screenings, spectacular events in an outdoor swimming pool, a circus tent, a deconsecrated church, rooftops, pubs, squats, clubs and railway arches, after tours of Europe, after spin off groups in Brighton, Amsterdam and Los Angeles, after screening thousands of short films to thousands of people, it’s time to celebrate twenty years of the Exploding Cinema ! // Featuring: HALLOWEEN revels, short films, psychedelic visuals, performance, soundtracks... and, on two screens, classics from the Exploding vault // Special guest : the Man from Uranus www.explodingcinema.org www.facebook.com/explodingcinema http://www.antic-ltd.com/dogstar/ NO STARS NO FUNDING NO TASTE

DJ GIOVANNI

this friday the Disco houstlers will be atthe Music Bar 144hill play thebest of electro house tech plus mc:s and live pa its a must see a event as the soundsystem it one of the best to apear in the notting hill carnival 2011

Catriona

Brixton Village market arcades are now open Thurs-Sat evenings and also on Sundays.