No 32 The Old Town Clapham
32 The Pavement, SW4 0JE
020 3535 0910/http://www.no32theoldtown.co.uk
No 32 The Old Town is an ‘independent neighbourhood bar and restaurant’ situated in a converted pub in the middle of Clapham village’s vibrant restaurant scene. With a roof terrace, breakfast and brunch menus, cocktails, and a late licence until 1am on Friday and Saturdays it offers an all day service to the young, middle-class locals.
Fiona and I went to review on a chilly Wednesday January evening and the place was heaving with couples and groups of friends having an evening out. So they are obviously doing something right.
We opened up with a citrussy bottle of Picpoul de Pinet (£25). Crispy peppered squid (£7.95) was not peppered and came in a beer batter which was too heavy for the squid.
Fish cakes with a mild horseradish tartar sauce (£7.95) were tasty little nuggets, breadcrumbed and not greasy despite being deep-fried.
Fiona’s venison, smoked Lardon and portobello mushroom Pie (£14.50) was quite serviceable if a bit chewy and came with a commendably rustic buttery mash and greens.
Pan-fried Cod with mussels and braised fennel (£17.50) was dramatically over-salted and without much flavour.
No 32 is a buzzy space that will come into its own in the summer. It’s not claiming to be a fine dining restaurant but for a first date or a fun night out with friends it would be a good local option.