New balls please, we’re off to Wimbledon! So let’s get Game, Set and Matched for the best of SW19 dining. With its countrysidey vibe and quiet affluence, Wimbledon is one of the nicest places in London. What’s more, once you’ve huffed your way up the massive hill from the station, you’ll be spoiled for choice when it comes to dining options.
Hotel du Vin, in the imposing Cannizaro House on the common, is always treat to visit and the Orangerie and Bistro conservatory restaurant at the back is a must-eat-at. Overlooking parkland that’s ripe for an explore after lunch, or a romantic stroll through before dinner, the west facing restaurant and wall to ceiling windows give perfect sunset vistas, and that’s before you’ve even ordered from the modern European menu.
Great for: Sunset dining
The Ivy Cafe continues on its march to world domination, with a Wimbledon outpost in Wimbledon Village’s most dominating positions, right on the crossroad in the centre of the village. The chain have so far managed to maintain an incredibly high standard, in terms of interiors and menu, and their Wimbledon branch pulls no punches, the food is excellent. What’s also remark worthy is the garden terrace at the back, the retreat of many-a-tennis legend during the short Wimbledon tennis fortnight.
Great for: Hanging on the terrace, looking for tennis stars
At first glance Light House might be accused of being a little too far down the Ridgway to be this pricey, or this good, but the good five minute stroll is worth every step. What’s more, being off the main tourist beat certainly helps during the tennis. And the food is excellent, it really is, the service seldom misses a beat and the clientele are so often, and tellingly, locals.
Great for: Genuine Wimbledon dining, no tennis nonsense
Maison St Cassien brings the Middle East right into the centre of one of Britain’s most iconic locations. The Mediterranean and Lebanese restaurant is relaxed, sit out on the pavement tables or disappear within for a real café vibe.
Great for: The coffee!
Wander over the common and you’ll quickly alight on The Fox & Grapes, on Camp Road. The gastro-pub serves a classic menu of upmarket pub classics. The perfect pub for ending a round of golf or a good Sunday walk at, it’s a little pricey for pub food, but this is Wimbledon and the service is attentive enough, and the surroundings pleasant enough, to justify it.
Great for: Upscale pub-dining
A sibling for Light House (it’s a spin-off of the Wimbledon fave, this time cleverly located far closer to the action), the exposed brick walls are lined with historic prints and can be enjoyed whilst pitching up during one of the afternoon tea parties every day except Sundays or while chomping down on the varied menu.
Great for: Homemade lemonade and cake, of course!
You can’t walk through Wimbledon without being struck by the size and dominance of the Dog & Fox, but despite having all the hallmarks of a Wetherspoon-esque gin palace, the venue boasts a decent restaurant, while the Young’s pub is one of their nicer efforts (which, as ever, you pay for at the pump). The restaurant serves classic pseudo-gastro fodder and it’s not only a great place to grab a bite, but it’s also incredibly convenient being slap bang in the middle of the village.
Great for: Location, location, location