Cafe Below: my latest wine list

Cafe Below

After drinking it and writing about it, my next favourite wine-based pursuit is producing wine lists. Cafe Below is a restaurant in the crypt of St Mary-le-Bow Church in the heart of the City. Apparently if you’re born within earshot of the church bells, that means you’re a true Cockney, and when the building was burned down in the Great Fire of London, it was rebuilt by Sir Christopher Wren. I love working in London.

When the current owner, Anthony Middleton, decided to move from serving lunches only to dinner service as well, he decided it was time to upgrade the wine list, and commissioned me to put something together. You can take a look at it here: Cafe Below Wine List

The menu is seasonal modern British with the occasional Mediterranean influence, which means there were few restrictions in terms of style or country of origin. Instead, I’ve tried to reflect the values of the kitchen in the wine list; mostly organic, biodynamic or natural wines from small producers who care about reflecting their land and their heritage.

To begin with, dinner is only being served on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. If you book online for dinner during the month of October you’ll get 50% off the food.

The menu changes daily, but here’s an example from a few days ago. It’s unlike most of the chains and swankier restaurants in the area;it has a bit of heart and soul. If you pay them a visit, let me know what you think!


Focaccia & Olives: Nella di Cerignola & Nyons £5

Butternut pate, flatbread, Basra date syrup £4.50

Finochiona; Tuscan salami with fennel £4

Salame della Rosa; Piemontese salami seasoned with Barbera wine £4

A plate of charcuterie, rillettes & pickles to share £12


We recommend two or three plates per person to share, one as a starter

Salmon cured pastrami style, soda bread, horseradish cream £7

Braised fennel £5.50

Smoked eel, crisp pancetta, crepe parmentier £7.50

Beetroot, red onion, red cabbage, crème fraiche £7

House salt cod brandade, bread £9

Seven spice lamb sausage, braised chick peas, saffron aioli £10.50

Pearl barley risotto, pumpkin, chestnuts £9.50

Courgettes, puy lentils, buffalo mozzarella £10

Ox cheek in red wine, butterbeans £9.50


Scrag end of lamb, rosemary dumpling, swede £18

Sea bream, clams, borlotti beans £16.50


St Clement’s Cream, candied clementine, sable biscuit £5.50

Yorkshire parkin, spiced treacle, honeycomb parfait £7

Chocolate tart, salted caramel, clotted cream £7

Brebis Fermier cheese, pickled quince £6


CB table