British, Italian, Modern European·

SquareMeal Review of Carmine

Hailed as a 100-cover restaurant, bar, brunch and study spot (it offers workspace membership on weekdays), we’re often hesitant about places that try to be everything all at once - stick to what you know and all that. What did fill us with confidence, however, is Carmine’s promising kitchen credentials with head chef Ozzy Martin Pier (previously Peckham Cellars and The Ivy) at the fore.  

Indeed, the brasserie-style menu reads well, offering a selection of bar snacks, small and large plates, plus a single dessert option (if it’s good, why offer more?). High notes included a plate of rotund butternut squash arancini paired alongside punchy tartare sauce (surprising, but it worked) and dusted with finely grated Parmesan. While from the main plates, pan-fried sea bream with sautéed potatoes and a tangle of pickled shallots, olives and tomatoes was simple and balanced. All was washed down with a very drinkable, medium-bodied Spanish red, amongst a list that champions natural and low-intervention wines.  

There were a few stumbles along the way: a couple of ingredients were ‘out of stock’, so to speak, the fries (although served alongside a well-cooked steak) were over-salted and the pastry on the chocolate tart was soft, rather than crisp and short. It was the only option from the dessert menu, so perhaps another choice was needed in the end.  

The vast space offers various styles of seating – booths, counter side and tables – to match its multifaceted dining options, while the spacious area is decked in dark mahogany tones, yellow booth seating and green tiled walls to bring a trendy New York bar vibe to Streatham high street. 

Dishes are comfortably priced to the extent that you don’t feel the need to tot up the cost as you go (usually a hindrance when it comes to small plates). We visited on a Tuesday when attendance was a little sparse, but we reckon it’s a place that would really come into its own for big groups on weekends. In fact, we’re already eyeing up its Sunday roast offering.  

Good to know

Average Price
££££ - £30 - £49
British, Italian, Modern European
Cool, Cosy, Fun, Lively
Food Occasions
All day dining, Brunch, Dinner, Late night dining, Lunch, Sunday roast
Special Features
Vegetarian options

About Carmine

Carmine is a 100-cover restaurant, bar and workspace on Streatham’s High Parade founded by friends and business partners Christopher Howe and Jamie Cottam-Allan. The name of the site is inspired by the infamous Soprano’s mafia boss ‘Carmine Lupertazzi’ while its food offering focusses on a varied brasserie-style menu. Carmine is something of a hybrid space with the option to hire workspace membership during the week, where customers can set up shop for the day thanks to high-speed wifi and plenty of speciality coffee to keep you fuelled.  

From Tuesday to Saturday, the Streatham site is open for dinner and drinks from 5pm, offering a menu that features snacks, small and large plates. Examples of dishes include fried olives stuffed with feta; rarebit, cheddar and beer croquettes with tomato and chilli relish; roast squash, fennel, homemade green pesto and crispy sage; chocolate tart with raspberry and pear.  

On Saturdays, diners can feast on an array of all-day brunch options such as an open smoked salmon bagel with poached egg, dill and avo crema; pastrami red slaw dill pickles with toasted sourdough and garlic and thyme mushrooms on toast. While on Sundays it serves up a serious Sunday roast with all the trimmings.  

To drink, customers can order a number of wines on draft, by the glass or carafe, while wines by the bottle have all been selected with a focus on sustainability including a number of natural and low-intervention options. There is also a selection of pre-mix cocktails and local craft beer on tap.  

Inside, the interiors take inspiration from the famous brunch haunts of New York and Chicago. The contemporary and colourful design offers art-deco seating, industrial textures and foliage features to bring a bright and inviting feel during the day. While at night the space transforms into a more intimate space stoked by red mahogony wood furniture and brass light fittings.  

Location for Carmine

20-21 The High Parade , London, SW16 1EX


Opening Times

All day
Mon Closed
Tue 17:00-23:30
Wed 17:00-23:30
Thu 17:00-23:30
Fri 17:00-00:30
Sat 11:00-00:30
Sun 12:00-23:30

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