SquareMeal Review of
Balls Brothers Austin Friars
Keeping the claret flowing since 1860, Balls Brothers of London knows how to look after its City customers. This group of friendly, almost ‘pubby’ wine bars is not in the vanguard but, as a wine merchant of old, its cellars are well stocked and its wine lists well-priced. France is a strong suit, but there are some interesting bottles from the ‘rest of Europe’ and the New World too. Food runs from rib-sticking pub grub to classic bistro. For a quick lunch, order Stilton and crispy bacon sandwiches or beer-battered haddock and chips; if it’s going to be a long one, make it potted shrimps, steak-frites and sticky toffee pudding. Balls Brothers’ individual venues are looking good after a fairly recent refurb, and all have their own selling points including terraces, private rooms and even pétanque.