It’s obviously not too hard to find a great venue for live music or a place that serves good food in London.
But places that have both?
That’s a much trickier proposition. Unless you happen to be in Battersea, that is. Because you can just pop into Room 43.
And, to be clear, Room 43 IS in Battersea despite the protestations of Google. You’ll find it on Lavender Hill just down from Clapham Junction (also in Battersea). From the signage out the front, to the furnishings inside, there’s a whole lot of unvarnished wood alongside shelves covered in books & pot plants, studded leather sofas, and low-wattage moody lighting. All in all, its designed to evoke an atmosphere of laid back comfort, as if you were in your own living room. And it works.
The place is a restaurant first and foremost, serving Persian food that spans the familiar classics (falafel with house-made hummus, or grilled lamb chops with a cucumber & yoghurt sauce) to less familiar numbers like their Joojeh chicken, which is marinaded in turmeric and served with a honey, soya, and sesame sauce. Then there are herb frittatas with barberries and whipped eggs (aka the Kookoo Sabzi) and slow-cooked stews like the Gheimeh Bademjan, which has sauteed aubergines, split yellow peas, lamb leg, and dried lime.
They take their drinks just as seriously, and have a rather clever cocktail menu system – it’s a kind of ‘flavour map’ with a pair of axis, one spanning Light to Rich, and the other from Sweet to Sour. All of their cocktails are thusly plotted on the map, so you can instantly tell at a glance that the Cardamom Fizz is quite light, and straddles the line between sweet and sour. Or that the Coffee Glasse is both extremely rich and sweet (mostly thanks to the dark rum, coffee liqueur, vanilla ice cream, and crushed pistachios.
And now, the most important part of this whole deal – the live music. They have a jazz band on every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night. There’s no extra charge, and they rotate the acts from their network of around 600 top-shelf musicians. And there’s standup comedy on every Wednesday, too.
NOTE: Room 43 is open now. You can find out more and make a booking at their website right HERE.
Room 43 | 43 Lavender Hill, SW11 5QW