Jason Allen 21/03/24


“What’s the best new wine bar in London?”


“Okay… (puts on deep voice) what’s the best new wine bar in London?”

That’s how we presume a lot of conversations will be going in the near future, because Waterloo just got a lovely new bottle shop & wine bar named, well, Lower. You’ll find it on the Lower Marsh (hence the name) that fringes the station. And the team behind it – a trio of locals, Blaise Coley, Skye Alejandro & Alex Pitt – have CVs littered with big names like Brat, Kiln, The Clove Club, and more.

Push through the heavy velvet curtain at the entrance, and you’ll find yourself in a small, charming, and intimately atmospheric space peppered with simple wooden furnishings & wrapped in white walls with a handsome skirt of burgundy paint. There are candles on every table, and bottles line the shelves wherever you look. If you want the best seats in the house? Head straight for the corner by the window at the front – it’s the cosiest little nook, and gives the perfect vantage point for people-watching.


The wine itself, being the pivot upon which any wine bar must tilt, is thankfully great. There’s plenty to choose from without it being overwhelming, and there’s a healthy selection by-the-glass too. One of the bottles was even made by house sommelier Alex Pitt himself, when he collaborated with legendary Austrian winemaker Heidi Schröck. (It’s a perfectly lovely dry white with a little skin contact, so don’t be surprised if he recommends it.)

In the bustling open kitchen at the back they’re cooking up grape-friendly delights like Spanish tortillas with velvety aoli; warm salt cod brandade & baguette; and classic platters of cheese & charcuterie. There are teething problems here and there (the mussels are more wine than mussels), but it’s generally all absolutely delicious.

During the day, the place doubles up as a bottle shop, with a little cellar down below stuffed to the rafters with barrels, bottles, and cases of the good stuff, and there are tastings being planned down there already.

And as a last little bonus they’re keen to point out that, being in Waterloo, the bar is within spitting distance of the Old Vic, The Young Vic, The National Theatre, BFI & The Southbank Centre.

So you should be able to get to the theatre without much drama.


NOTE: Lower is open now, Tuesday to Saturday. There are no bookings. You can find out more at the website right here.

Lower | 19 Lower Marsh, SE1 7RJ

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19 Lower Marsh, Waterloo, South London, SE1 7RJ

8.3 | Great