If you’re interested in wine tasting, London has some great spots for it. London might be lauded for its pubs, but it also has amazing wine bars, wine classes, wine shops, and even some wineries. We’ve listed some of the best places for wine tasting in London, for all types of wine tasting experiences.
Do you want to learn about English wines or want to taste wine from different wine regions?
Perhaps you are just looking for a great wine bar for drinks in the city. Depending on your wine tasting goals, there are several different ways you can approach wine tasting in London, and the most common ways covered in this post include:
- Visit a London Winery
- Day Trip to a Vineyard and Winery near London
- London Wine Bars
- Take a Wine Course at a Wine School
- Attend a London Wine Tasting Event
London Wine Tasting Experience at a Winery
If you’re interested in learning about English wine, take a tour of some wineries in the city. Here are a few wineries making wine with grapes from England, and you don’t even have to leave the city to visit them.
London Cru Winery
Once an old gin distillery, London Crus is now a modern winery that offers tastings, winery tours, and wine events. In addition to a few sparkling wines, they also produce Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and wine from a grape called Bacchus. This grape was created for the climate in England by a viticulturist in the 1930s, and is a cross between the grapes Silvaner, Riesling, and Müller-Thurgau.
London Cru also hosts some educational tastings, where you’ll get to taste varietals or styles from multiple regions and compare them to English wine. They also offer a” winemaker for a day” experience, where you blend your own wine.
Wine tours and tastings are offered in a package once a month. The package includes the tasting, tour, and bottles of each of London Cru’s current release wines.
Blackbook is another urban winery in London offering wine tastings and winery tours. Some of their wines include Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir, and sparkling wine.
While a small amount of Blackbook’s wine is fermented in stainless steel tanks, most of it is fermented in neutral French oak, and all of it is aged for at least 6 months in neutral French oak barrels.
Tastings and tours happen on Saturday afternoons. Blackbook also hosts some special events. Being a small winery, they offer the opportunity to help out during busy production times, which is a great way to see how it all works.
Day Trip to a Vineyard Near London
Wine tasting experiences are even better at a vineyard. Luckily, there are some vineyards and wineries fairly near central London. When you’re done with the London sights, take a day trip to see English wine country.
English wine is growing in quality and popularity, so get out to a winery and see what the winemakers are doing. Below are three wineries less than and hour drive from central London and perfect for a day trip. If you want to venture a bit further, you can taste the best English wines within a 2 hour drive at these vineyards near London.
Forty Hall Vineyard
Forty Hall Vineyard is a certified organic vineyard and the only commercial-scale vineyard in London. They make low-intervention wines: a Brut sparkling in the traditional method of Champagne, and Bacchus and Ortega single vineyard wines. Tours and tastings occur monthly from April to October.
Harrow and Hope Winery
Harrow and Hope is located in Chiltern Hills, a unique wine growing region where the Thames used to run. The soil is clay, gravel, and chalk – great conditions for growing wine grapes. Harrow and Hope makes sparkling wine with typical grapes used in Champagne – Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Pinot Meunier. Seasonal tours occur on alternating Wednesdays and Saturdays (May-Sept).
Woodfine is also located in Chiltern Hills and is currently undergoing a farm conversion to organic status. They practice regenerative farming methods and have a diverse ecosystem with grazing animals, chickens and wildflower fields for bees.
Woodfine sparkling wines and cider are created using Pétillant Naturel and Col Fondo methods. They are very minimal intervention wines without sulfites, additives or disgorgement. Woodfine winery tours are available by appointment only.
A Bit Further
If you drive a little further out (still less than 2 hours drive), you can explore some excellent wineries like Gusbourne in Kent or The Grange and Raimes in Hampshire.
London Wine Bars
Visiting a wine bar can be a fantastic way to sample wine. Using a Coravin, many wine bars and restaurants can now offer fine wine by the glass, letting you choose different wines to create your own tasting session.
A hidden wine bar in Soho, The Mulwray is a great place to taste wine. The main focus is on natural and biodynamic wines, but you can find some old world classics and fine wines here. The Mulwray also hosts a monthly wine education series called “Sip School” for a deep dive on wine varietals and regions taught by wine experts.
Eataly is a destination to eat, shop, and learn about Italy. Central Bar in Eataly offers a selection of Italian wines you can sample with antipasti, pizza, and pasta. Eataly also hosts weekly tastings called “Wine Wednesdays,” where they focus on individual regions of winemaking in Italy.
Interestingly, Noble Rot began as a magazine about food and wine. Now, there are two Noble Rot restaurants in London – a restaurant and wine bar in Lamb’s Conduit and a restaurant in Soho. Both locations have won awards for best wine list, and you’ll find some real gems there, from rare and aged wines to undervalued picks.
Gordon’s Wine Bar
Gordon’s is the oldest wine bar in London and one of the most popular. Here you will find a large selection of French wines and wines from around the world, and almost all are sold by the glass. The menu also makes it easy to identify wines that are organic, biodynamic, sustainable, and vegan. Wine and cheese goes well together, and Gordon’s knows it. With your wine, you can enjoy cheese boards, charcuterie, and more small bites.
Hector’s is a wine bar and bottle shop in the De Beauvoir neighborhood in London. They serve small plates along with wines by the glass, and staff recommendations are spot on. In addition to glasses, they offer vintage cellar wines by the bottle.
Natural Wine Bar London
Wine bar bottle selections can be highly variable, but natural wine bars tend to focus on low-intervention growing and winemaking, native yeast, and low or no sulfur added. There are many, but here just a few great natural wine bars worth visiting for London wine tastings:
- The Mulwray
- Cadet Wine Bar
- The Remedy
London Wine School
Wine Unearthed is a wine school, offering monthly wine tasting workshops and classes. There are two themes: understanding terroir and grape varietals (Vine to Wine) and learning the characteristics of wines from major wine regions of the world (World of Wine). Generally, these courses alternate monthly, and they last 5 hours.
Each workshop includes 15 wines and a 3 course food pairing. Also, on select Friday nights, Wine Unearthed hosts a wine and cheese tasting, including 8 wines and 4 cheeses. You’ll learn which cheese and wine pair best together.
Wine Tasting Events in London
Several of the wine bars and wineries listed above offer special tasting events and dinners, so keep an eye on their calendars. London also hosts a large wine tasting fair every year. If you’re in the wine industry, you will want to attend the London Wine Fair.
London Wine Shop with Tastings
Hedonism is a wine shop in Mayfair that holds special tasting events that showcase a particular type of wine or hosts winemakers from around the world. In addition, you can arrange a private tasting catered to your preferences. Tickets can be bought online for the tastings.
Whether you’re into natural wines or old world classics, the best wines can be found in London. The city is rich with wine bars, restaurants with amazing wine programs, and even wineries making English wine. There is no shortage of opportunity for wine tasting in London. Where will you go?