Themed restaurants rarely work. That’s the opinion of this reviewer. They just try too hard. The reality tends to be a disappointment; as the cliché goes, just as it’s hard to put lipstick on a pig, it’s equally difficult to assume that a cycling outlet can also work as a fully-fledged pizza restaurant. Maybe the Dynamo started out as something simple – a pit-stop for cyclists close to the Thames in Putney – but it has now evolved into a venue aimed not just at lycra-clad fitness freaks but also prosperous locals. If you look beyond the bike-related accessories and repair room in the basement (where, if you so choose, you can also play table tennis), then Dynamo is a fun venue for families or large groups. The room is spacious and brightly coloured with décor unsurprisingly being based around the theme of cycling. By day, there are breakfasts/ brunches both hearty and healthy. By night, it’s all about pizza, with a range of around ten available. All are reasonably priced (no more than £12) and each is named after a mountain climb. To the uninitiated, some of this lore was a little bewildering and why portobello mushrooms, capers, oregano and rocket should be particularly associated with Leith Hill (a venue near Dorking, in Surrey) was, for example, not at all clear. That Dynamo’s pizza oven needs to be named ‘Gloria’ also struck me as puzzling; perhaps an in-joke on which I was missing out? All this said, the chefs clearly know what they’re doing. Our group of around a dozen all polished off our pizzas. My ‘Ventoux’ – anchovies, olives, capers, chilli and basil – was a wonderful exercise in executing something simple very well. The pizza base was light and soft; the tomato sauce slow-cooked and intense and the toppings all highly flavoursome. The same could not be said of the wines. Both our red options went for theme over quality. Maybe it works for some, but just because a bottle has a picture of a bike (or anything else with wheels, like roller-skates) on it doesn’t make the contents good. Our Spanish Ribera del Duero effort had to be among the most disappointing bottles I have recently drunk. Message to Dynamo: stick to what your good at. Message to potential visitors: go, but don’t set your expectations too high.