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Square Meal Review of José ?

The more casual of José Pizarro’s two Bermondsey Street restaurants, teeny José is so Spanish that it makes one reader “feel like I’ve stepped away from London for a short while”. No bookings are taken and the room is inevitably crowded, but that’s part of the fun. Grab a stool if you can (or a corner if you can’t), and get stuck into glasses of sherry, cava or Spanish wines along with simple dishes straight from the open kitchen. Crisp and creamy-centred croquetas, tasty Padrón peppers and freshly carved slices of ibérico ham are hardly a rarity in London’s Spanish restaurants, but few compete with the quality found here. More unusual dishes such as sea bass with morcilla are just as well received. Add a “lively” and “convivial” atmosphere, and José is just about good enough to save you a flight to the Continent.


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  1. Published : Thursday, 18 July 2013

    FoodiesOnTheProwl FoodiesOnTheProwl :: Jose, Jun 2013

    We were planning to visit he Tapas Fantasticas festival over at Towerbridge, but the terrible British weather put a dampener on those plans. Yet, still we felt like tapas and Jose (5 mins away) was the perfect spot to attend to that fix. We’d been several times before and never has it disappointed. Luckily we were seated straight away and could dig into some lovely Spanish dishes within mins of arrival...
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  1. I ended up at Jose, after finding Zucca was fully booked for the night. I first met Jose Pizarro very briefly at Scala’s supper club a few years ago. I’ve tried some of his food at his stall in Maltby Street and knew the food would not disappoint. Bermondsey street is quickly becoming my never fail places to go to for exceptional food. Jose has two restaurants conquering the popular street, both serving Spanish tapas.

    Jose restaurant was very busy the night I visit we waited a good 10 mins or so for seats, the place is packed out and tight to even walk around the tables. The place is cosy and buzzing with...
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  1. Published : Tuesday, 1 July 2014

    Nomface :: Jose, London

    A recent lunchtime visit to Bermondsey Street led us to José Pizarros tapas bar aptly named José, within a couple hundred yards of his more formal restaurant named Pizarro. We wanted a chilled casual lunch affair and this was the perfect place to do so. The interior is simple and cozy with high tapas bar tables. With a nice bottle of red wine we ordered a range of dishes to graze on. The food at José hits the mark without complications, much like the venue...
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  1. Published : Wednesday, 7 August 2013

    edge and spoon :: Jose

    Roll up, roll up. This is a positive review. Which has nothing to do with arriving at the restaurant three sheets to the wind after a morning spent wine tasting. I love José for all the wrong reasons. It’s one of few London places I laud for its no booking policy. I say restaurant – it’s a tiny bar with strategically placed barrels and the odd stool for the lucky few. But thank goodness it’s always full; everything seems to taste better with aching feet. The chef behind the name, José Pizarro, plied his trade in some of the UK’s top Spanish kitchens, by way of Madrid’s renowned Meson de Doña Filo. And the best thing?...
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  1. Published : Friday, 12 October 2012

    samphire and salsify :: Jose

    Jose is situated on Bermondsey Street (a 7 minute walk from London Bridge station) and is a sherry and tapas bar which my gentleman companion and I have always wanted to visit. We previously haven’t on account of it always being packed, or should I say bursting at the seams...
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  1. Published : Monday, 17 December 2012

    SamTheFoodFan :: José

    First stop, José. The first tapas and sherry bar from José Pizarro, formerly of Brindisa in Borough Market, once described as the best tapas bar in Britain by The Independent Newspaper.

    The restaurant is located on a corner of Bermondsey Street and as soon as you step in, you forget that you're in South London. It is tiny, but perfectly formed. Authentic Spanish tiles line the walls, wine barrels used as tables and huge legs of Jamon hanging from the ceiling. I've heard that the restaurant gets really busy and there is often a queue to get in, so we arrived early and managed to bag a very cosy spot in a corner...
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  1. I know that some people seem to (mistakenly) have the view of me as being only interested in pretentious food. While I do enjoy fine dining, that doesn’t stop me from venturing into other environments in search of quiet eating. After all, in Japan, some of the best ramen I had was in run down little shacks. So in search of good food I allowed myself to be persuaded by my friends to venture into deep dark Bermondsey in search of food. Jose. Down Bermondsey Street we braved the dark tunnel under the railway tracks in search of food. I did think at the start that this seemed like the entry to a pig’s sty, a dark...
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  1. I have a special place in my heart for Spanish tapas.

    It was actually my first introduction to the world of Mediterranean cuisine, the abundant use of great quality olive oil, specialty-fed pork, freshest tomatoes, flavourful seafood offerings, and of course, lots and lots of paprika.

    As with any type of internationally acclaimed cuisine, you are bound to find the best version of it here in London. It’s literally an international food treasure trove of a city and I’m just a very hungry kid in a vast candy shop...
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Jose Pizarro

Now one of London’s best-known Spanish chefs, José Pizarro toiled behind the scenes at Eyre Brothers, Gaudi and Brindisa (where he launched their tapas bars) before going it alone. José, his tapas and sherry bar, opened on fashionable Bermondsey Street in 2011, while his second solo project (Pizarro) launched just metres down the road that same year. His third restaurant, the self-named José Pizarro, will open in the City’s Broadgate Circle complex in 2015.

Essential Details for José

  • Address: 104 Bermondsey Street, London SE1 3UB
  • Telephone: 020 7403 4902
  • Website:
  • Opening Hours: Mon-Sun 12N-11pm (Sun -5.30pm)

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