Located a short walk from the Charing Cross tube station and Trafalgar Square, on Villiers Street, Gordon’s Wine Bar is thought to be London’s oldest wine bar.
Established in 1890, Gordon’s Win Bar specializes in serving a wide variety of award winning wines, as well a selection of Sherries, Madeiras and Ports straight from the barrel, while maintaining its classic look and atmosphere.
A treasure for both London’s young and old generations, the bar is typically filled to the brim by nightfall. Entering the bar, you walk down an aged wooden staircase, descending into the popular cellar area. The bar is typically filled with eager customers and is staffed by friendly and knowledgeable workers who clearly love wine. To the left of the bar, you have to stoop as you walk through an arch into the candlelight cellar seating area. The cellar seating area is packed tightly with tables and full of locals enjoying a post work drink.
If the sun happens to be shining and you choose to go for a day drink, the outdoor area is picturesque as you sit along the River Thames, watching London roll past you as you sip from your glass of port. The outdoor area is also fitted with umbrellas and heat lamps making it a fine spot to enjoy a drink at night if the cellar happens to be full.
Gordon’s is not simply limited to its incredible selection of wine, but also hosts a selection of the world’s finest cheeses. With over twenty cheeses on hand, you are given the opportunity to create an incredibly delightful cheese plate to enjoy with friends and accompany your wine. Other foods served include a selection of pies, salads, and a wide range of tapas. They basically set you up with the ideal food to enjoy with whatever wine you plan on drinking.
The bar also happens to be a place rich with history. Aside from being London’s oldest wine bar, the bar’s previous owner Arthur Gordon happened to be one of the few remaining “free vintners,” meaning that he was able to set up and sell wine anywhere without applying for a licenses as a result of Edward III’s charter to them in 1364, which came as a result of the king’s embarrassment at not being able to repay a loan made by the Vintners to him. The building the bar is located in is called Kipling House. Author Rudyard Kipling lived in the building in the 1890’s as a tenant and sitting in the room located directly above the bar wrote his famous work “The Light That Failed.” He is also said to have worked constantly in the parlor of the wine bar. London’s original Player’s Theatre stood directly opposite the bar at one point and thus became a favorite spot to many of the city’s greatest thespians, which still hold the bar close to heart today.
If you are looking for a drink in London, Gordon’s Wine Bar is a must visit spot, not only for its illustrious history, fantastic atmosphere, and amazing food, but for having the greatest selection of wine I have ever experienced.