Vinoteca, W1F 9SH
- 020 3544 7411
- 53-55 Beak Street, W1F 9SH
- noon-11pm Mon-Sun
The ground floor houses a wine bar, bistro-style restaurant, and wine shop. The tables are very tightly packed together, and when the restaurant gets busier there isn't much standing room at the bar or around the tables. The atmosphere during our visits so far (both on Friday evenings) has been quite loud and busy, but very friendly. The first floor seems a little less rowdy than the ground floor, but no less noisy! The menu changes daily, and is published on Vinoteca's website.
Laura and Matt first visited on a Friday evening in February 2013, doing a walk-up on spec. We arrived at 6.30pm and were seated straight away, although the waiter said that if we'd arrived any later than 7pm there would have been a wait. Laura ordered Bristol channel pollock followed by pannacotta with rhubarb compote, while Matt had the bavette steak and chips. We thought both meals were excellent.
We enjoyed the experience so much that we decided to return later the same month (again on a Friday), this time booking in advance. There are two sittings for dinner (6/6:30pm and 8:45/9:15pm), although it wasn't clear if this is just on busy nights or all the time. We were booked for 9pm and arrived at 8pm to have a glass of wine beforehand; however our table was ready early and we were seated right away.
This time Laura ordered shin beef with champ and kale, while Matt had the bavette steak and chips again. We also ordered some home-made bread and olive oil. Both main dishes were, again, very well executed and delicious.
Laura and Matt's verdict: This has become one of our favourite places to eat out. It would be interesting to visit at a time other than Friday night, to see if it ever gets any less busy! The staff are fantastic, very friendly and attentive but not overly so. We feel like coming back to eat here again and again.
Accessibility: A step up from the pavement to get inside. The ladies' toilets are on the first floor, while the gents' are on the ground floor. Both floors are quite tightly-packed with tables.