The Kensington Wine Rooms

Modern European·
Bronze Award

SquareMeal Review of The Kensington Wine Rooms

Bronze Award

Debonair Kensington Wine Rooms has a fun, buzzy feel that’s no doubt fortified by the copious quantities of wine by the glass it dispenses – some four dozen are available via an Enomatic system. Pitch camp at the bar, charge up your special pre-paid card, then sip your way through a list that runs from everyday sips to serious ‘event’ vintages at intimidating prices. Wine matches appear alongside each dish on the evening menu in the adjoining dining area: Cornish crab, avocado and spiced crackers with a Gusbourne Estate Chardonnay from Kent; sea bass atop crab, pea and crème fraîche risotto with a 2014 Puligny Montrachet ‘Les Enseigneres’; onglet steak and hand-cut chips accompanied by a 2104 Stellenbosch (RSA). ‘Bar plates’ and lunch specials for a tenner offer the best value, brunch brightens up the weekend, and regular wine events are a big draw.

Good to know

Average Price
££££ - £30 - £49
Modern European
Fun, Lively
Food Occasions
Special Features
Dog friendly
Dates, Special occasions
Food Hygiene Rating

The Kensington Wine Rooms is featured in


127-129 Kensington Church Street, Kensington, London, W8 7LP

020 7727 8142


Opening Times

12h – 24h Mon to Friday, 11h – 24h Saturday, 11h – 23h Sunday


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5 Reviews 

Luis A

28 June 2019  
Nice wine selection.

Oliver L

25 July 2013  
Food & Drink 5
Service 5
Atmosphere 5
Value 4.5
Love Wine? This is THE place!
The Kensington Wine Rooms has possibly the best and most thought through wine list in London. Their expanding collection of natural wines is a treat – sure, sometime you have to pay up for the low yields and the hard labour that goes into making those gems, but it's well worth it. Very considerate mark-ups on the higher-end wines. The food is matched to individual wines and doesn't disappoint! Great atmosphere.

Magnus T

15 February 2012  
Food & Drink 5
Service 4.5
Atmosphere 5
Value 4.5
The Kensington Wine Rooms has been a favourite of mine since it opened as I used to live (very) nearby. I went back there last night and had a fantastic time. If anything, I'd say the food has improved. The cooking is modern european and pared-back in the intimate restaurant at the back. At the bar they have a tapas menu, but one which aims rather higher than your usual tapas joint: the foie gras is to die for and amazingly good value! Fantastic wine list too, with very low mark-ups, esp. at the top end. Slight bias: the wines by the glass dispensers are fantastic if you're studying for your WSET exams, and I'm in the trade.

Patrick B

12 February 2012  
Food & Drink 2.5
Service 2
Atmosphere 2.5
Value 0.5
Let's be clear here: the concept of KWR is great. To serve top wines by the glass, aided by an elaborade – fridge doesn't do it justice – “cooling mechanism” is great. However, the tapas style dishes are not as good as they could – or should for this price -be. Service can be sketchy during busy times, but the main problem here is the bill – expensive was yesterday, this is astronomical. Ironically it is the Tapas which weigh heaviest on the bill and one comes away with a distinct feeling that a few really good bottles – not glasses – with friend at home would have been a better idea. However, the concept has potential and maybe the arrival of the financial crises in Kensington will help with the fine tuning of the pricing structure.

Fiona M

24 March 2010  
Food & Drink 4
Service 3.5
Atmosphere 2.5
Value 3.5
I've been to the Kensington Wine Rooms for lunch a few times now and have always loved the food and wine. The food is tasty, seasonal and beautifully presented in decent portion sizes. I had a really tasty vegetarian lasagne while my guests had the tiger prawn, crab & mange tout risotto (which had proper large juicy prawns, not the tiny shrimps you get elsewhere), and duck with a red berry sauce and roast squash. The duck didn't go down as well as the other two dishes; it was described as “fatty and undercooked”, and the squash was still hard. I'm also a real fan of the extensive wine list (from the very reasonable to pretty expensive) and the self-serve wine system – great fun! My only issue with the Wine Rooms is that it's never actually been busy when I've been there for lunch; there were only 4/5 tables filled yesterday which seems mad. The result is that the atmosphere is distinctly lack lustre. Maybe they should do some sort of lunch time offers? Set 2/3 course menus at lower prices?
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