The Riverfront

BFI Southbank, Belvedere Road , London, SE1 8XT

SquareMeal Review of The Riverfront

This stretch of the riverfront is one of the South Bank’s most iconic under-bridge locations, where a sea of second-hand books & Benugo’s all-day bar & kitchen create a bottleneck of hungry & thirsty literates. There’s a hopping atmosphere here at weekends, when the terrace is prime people-watching territory (pick one of the civilised tables or lean back in a brightly coloured deckchair on the other side). The menu is typical of the Benugo chain, surfing the cross-Channel wave for salt beef & horseradish sandwiches, cottage pie, chicken Kiev & bavette steak. To drink, the large bar dispenses cocktails, a commendable choice of wines & a handful of draught beers such as Sharp’s Doom Bar or Duvel Green at higher-than-average prices (expect plastic mugs if you’re supping alfresco).

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The Riverfront is recommended for

Buzzy | Fun | Dates | Outside Seating

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Nearby Tube/Rail Stations

Waterloo Tube Station 369m

Embankment Tube Station 400m


Address: BFI Southbank, Belvedere Road , London SE1 8XT

Area: South Bank Borough etc

Opening times

Mon-Sat 9am-11pm Sun 10am-10.30pm

Nearby Landmarks

Queen Elizabeth Hall & Purcell Room 37m

Royal Festival Hall 81m


Telephone: 020 7928 0808


Cuisine: Cafes


Food & Drink: 8.0

Service: 8.0

Atmosphere: 9.5

Value: 8.0

Food & Drink: 3.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 4.0

Richard E. platinum reviewer 12 March 2012

When does individual dress sense become a sartorial disaster? Sitting outside Riverfront, under Waterloo Bridge on a sunny Sunday lunchtime, watching the thighs, leggings, wobbling bottoms, joggers, tight jeans, slack jeans, boots, mums with prams/strollers/buggies, tramps and more leggings stroll by the South Bank Book Market, gives you plenty of chance to reflect upon this question. The stretch of the South Bank from Westminster Bridge along to Waterloo Bridge is great on the weekend if the sun is out: people dressed as characters from Disney, statues, even Johnny Depp seems to come out and mingle with the tourists, locals and the more sartorially challenged. Riverfront sits directly under Waterloo Bridge and has both a restaurant and a bar area. Outside, to get the sun, you have to sit the bar side, which is great: bar snacks include sausage rolls, ham hock and salt beef with gherkins. There are a dozen or more beers on tap and a number more by the bottle: not a Carlsburg or Fosters to be seen, but some interesting wheat beers and some seriously strong Belgium numbers. Service is relaxed and friendly, although did draw the line at bringing food to the person who decided that sitting on the river front, rather than at the tables of the Riverfront, which seems perfectly sensible. A splendid people watching place.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 5.0

Value: 4.0

Luca M. 17 August 2010

Very pleasant experience. Great simple food, very tasty. Service was fast and effective and we love the atmosphere even if it was a bit noisy. The sittings outside are confortable and the view is stunning. Friendly, smiley staff.