If you’re heading for a night out on the tiles in south London, chances are you’ll be travelling to the epicentre of activity, where all the best bars and clubs in south London congregate: Clapham. Pah, who needs Brixton!? Who needs New Cross? All the real drinking and dancing is taking place in Clapham North, Clapham Common, Clapham South, and Clapham Junction. These four pillars of fun contain a healthy number of pubs for watching sport, but sometimes, just sometimes, the only thing on your mind is (happy hour) cocktails, shots, loud music, and lots of lots of sexy single people. Welcome to Clapham. Welcome to the best bars and clubs in south London.
Tags: South London
WC - Wine & Charcuterie
Clapham / Bar / Cuisine: Bar
After nearly two years of renovations, this derelict, 100 year old listed former public convenience (pictured above), has been converted into an intimate, and secluded hideaway where guests can enjoy quality wines, delicious charcuterie boards, whilst listening to talented live music acts. This special location has been given a new lease of life and fresh purpose, but also adds something completely new to Clapham. The small booths and candlelit stools make it a great bar for date nights and small groups of conversational friends.
Powder Keg Diplomacy
Clapham / Restaurant / Cuisine: British
Hidden away on St John's Hill, far from the maddening crowds on Northcote Road and Clapham High Street, this secret time portal of a bar exudes a Dickensian spirit that plants its flag very firmly in the past; a flag that's resolutely British. Nearly everything on the food and drinks menus is British sourced which makes for an unusual array of cheek-blushing cocktails, girth stretching meals, and hand crafted ales. We recommend an early arrival for a cocktails in the bar (note: the peculiar decor), and under no circumstances should you leave without retiring to the rear quarters for a meal in the verdant green conservatory restaurant. Queen Victoria would've approved, and we do too.
Venn Street Records
Clapham / Bar / Cuisine: Pizza
Jet, Bachman-Turner Overdrive, Maximo Park, Beastie Boys, Jamie Liddell, Fleet Foxes, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Stevie Wonder, Bloc Party, Oasis; have we struck a chord yet? These artists are this bar's Top 10 and should give you an idea of what to expect. For anyone who prefers music memorabilia and a slice of retro in their nightlife sandwich (rather than cheese please), this bar offers a refreshing change to the homogeneous central London type bars so prevalent in Clapham. The al fresco area on the pedestrianised Venn Street, the 2-4-1 cocktails 5-7pm every day except Saturday, the unusual bottled beers, and the live music on Wednesday, Thursday and Sundays all scream: hangover cure at the ready!
Clapham / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: Bar
There are very few bars & clubs in south London that provide such BIG name DJs in close quarters. This bar has welcomed DJs Norman Jay MBE, Judge Jules, Sister Bliss (Faithless), The Freestylers, Utah Saints, Leeroy Thornhill (The Prodigy) and Joey Negro, with future DJs to include Jamie Zabiela and DJ Fresh. Gigalum is a dance music bar and the alfresco terrace (as seen in all its glory above) provides a perfect sun trap for that young, naked flesh cometh the hour for a cool down. It's the Ibiza in south London.
Clapham / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: British
We heart Lost Society. It's an unusual space, with low beams and a small courtyard beer garden (with own bar, note) providing the highlights. There's also a restaurant attached making it a great venue for one-stop-shop birthday party celebrations, especially with DJs playing a refreshing, cheeseless music policy upstairs. Also, the cocktail list is enormous - nine types of mojito alone! - and plenty of double-park happy hour action to take full advantage of. They also boast a good range of worldly bottled beers. Result.
Bar 366 St Johns Hill
Clapham / Bar /
A ridiculously kooky establishment, this is where you'd find the coolest ever grandma's knitting club. Vintage chairs, tables, books and accessories abound, but the drink selection brings bar 366 straight back to the 21stcentury. You'll find cocktails in plant pots, Marmite and mustard jars, decorated with icing sugar, chillies and flaming pomegranates. Tuck into a platter of locally-sourced cheese and ham while you're there - the Spanish family behind this joint definitely know their foods. If you're a cocktail fan, you cannot miss out on the incredible varieties offered by the team here - but recreate them at your peril. Very few can get the marmite: raspberry ration on the money
Clapham / Bar / Club /
They don't call it grand for no reason. This huge bar and nightclub opposite Clapham Junction station not only has one of the brightest, most colourful disco floors in the UK, but it also boasts the biggest sports screen in the UK (a whopping 15ft x 24ft). Throughout the week there's live bands, fight nights, and students nights. On Saturdays there's a double header of comedy showcasing London's best stand-up comedians, before the club becomes a heaving mass of sexy bodies for the Glamorous party until the earlier hours.
Clapham / Bar / Restaurant / Club / Cuisine: Modern European
The drinks menu at this lofty south London bar and club offers a thirst-burstling wide selection of cocktail creations as well as imported spirits and beers (for the unlikely event of eschewing a cocktail). The bar staff are unswervingly accommodating for companions who desire non-alcoholic cocktails, or mocktails, too. Best Cocktail: The Loft Rum Punch (serves 20).
Clapham / Bar / Club /
This club lounge in Clapham Junction brings a West-End taste to the south side of the river. Cocktail experimentation is at the forefront of this late nightspot with legendary mixologist Billy Tran of Paris Experimental Cocktail Club creating the 'medically mixed' drinks menu, bringing with him an array of flavours that will not fail to impress London's top party clientele. This mysterious watering hole is the perfect place playing host to an eclectic mix of music while serving up a plethora of inventive cocktails.
The Draft House Northcote
Clapham / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: Meat
This stretch of Clapham is overloaded with chain bars and restaurants, and although The Draft House is part of a small family, it is truly unique. Beer, in all its luscious guises, provides the cornerstone of this corner bar remit. Draught beers, craft beers, wheat beers, dark beers, weissebiers, pale ales, amber ales, stouts, lagers, porters; you name it, they serve it. The variety is astounding but thankfully measures also come in half and third pints. The retro fitted dining area is also a treat, especially when the word "burger" is uttered. Best beer: the rum cask Innis & Gunn.
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