Bow Wine Vaults - Restaurant

4.6
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179 reviews
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£26 to £40
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Modern European
From the people who brought you the buzzing and beloved Motcomb's on the other side of town comes the Bow Wine Vaults. This quaint and casual restaurant is set on the corner of Bow Lane, where the al fresco tables are in hot demand when the weather allows. Inside, there's a wine bar on the ground floor with seating area and a more formal vault dining room below stairs, with soft lighting and white table cloths. Even so, the ambience is relaxed rather than buttoned-up. The menu is a combination of continental favourites with an Eastern accent, accompanied by a truly blistering wine list. Try starter of grilled galette of goats cheese with roasted croutons and salad, main course of king scallops with tiger prawns wok-flamed with cognac, then skip the pud and go for the beautiful cheeses.
What 179 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.5
Food
4.4
Service
4.4
Ambience
4.2
Value
Noise · Quiet
100% of people would recommend it to a friend
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ME
London
10 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

As usual, a wonderful lunch, terrific service and great food.

LR
London
1 review
Dined on 8 November 2019
Overall4Food3Service4Ambience5

The restaurant is downstairs and is quieter than the lively brasserie/wine bar on the ground floor. We enjoyed our meal although my calves liver was a bit tough but the bacon flabby so an unpleasant combination. Service and ambience excellent.

OT
London
4 reviews
Dined on 16 July 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Excellent all round as ever. Reliable and top quality.

E
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined on 3 June 2019
Overall4Food5Service5Ambience4

Great food in pleasant room. Service is wonderful.

AN
1 review
Dined on 26 March 2019
Overall4Food3Service3Ambience4

Lovely, quiet setting. Very reasonably priced for the area. Friendly and attentive staff. I did not find the food itself knockout - my skate was rather meh, swimming in a bit too much butter, and came with rather unexciting potatoes. Nothing would prevent me going back to give it another try but I would not order that dish again.

CA
London
15 reviews
Dined on 6 March 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Lovely classic restaurant, impeccable service and delicious food, would highly recommend a visit !

KM
London
7 reviews
Dined on 28 November 2018
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Quiet business lunch. The food came SO quickly each time!

N
London
3 reviews
Dined on 17 August 2018
Overall3Food4Service1Ambience3

A London day pouring with rain so an inside business lunch meal. The service is slooow at the bar, it is self service food at lunchtime. The wine range is excellent, the cheese plates very good, the vaults very drippy (so avoid when it’s raining), the atmophere dim and candle lit, the headroom limited. So enjoyed the food, wine and ambience, but not the constant dripping or the hiddiously slow service at the bar and to pay.

C
Hertfordshire
1 review
Dined on 15 August 2018
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Friendly staff, remembered my name, good food, no more pricy than you would expect in the City, and better value than many.

SN
London
29 reviews
Dined on 3 July 2018
Overall4Food4Service3Ambience5

A splendid place for a lazy lunch. Good value food and wine

RB
1 review
Dined on 19 June 2018
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Chose this for a business lunch, based on its location and reviews. It was a sunny day so we asked to be moved to a table outside, which was arranged without fuss. The place has the style and ambiance of a classic French bistro and a decent unpretentious menu to match. We all had steak which was very good quality and perfectly cooked - simple but very effective. Service was excellent. I will definitely be coming back.

OT
1 review
Dined on 5 April 2018
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Great, always

A
1 review
Dined on 23 March 2018
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience4

I thought the food was very good and great value. Service was good, though one of the starters was wrong it was quickly corrected. A very nice venue for a relaxing lunch.

S
Las Vegas
39 reviews
Dined on 1 December 2017
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience4

This was an unexpected gem. Food was good and service attentive. Will definitely be back.

IM
London
19 reviews
Dined on 24 November 2017
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

We are a group of five former colleagues meeting for a catch-up over lunch. The ambience here, especially in the downstairs restaurant, is ideal - the meal was excellent, the desserts delicious, and the wine fine. Very pleasant atmosphere with friendly and efficient service.

D
London
8 reviews
Dined on 25 October 2017
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience4

I have eaten here many times and the food is always good

G
London
7 reviews
Dined on 29 September 2017
Overall5Food4Service5Ambience3

Good efficient service, good food, nice ambience. Would recommend

NA
London
2 reviews
Dined on 26 September 2017
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Extremely attentive service, quiet and comfortable and great for business lunches. Godd value for money

D
London
8 reviews
Dined on 5 September 2017
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience4

I have been here many times of the years and I have always found the food and service excellent.

OT
London
6 reviews
Dined on 25 August 2017
Overall5Food4Service5Ambience4

Lovely restaurant, good portions and great food. Excellent service.

AN
London
4 reviews
Dined on 4 July 2017
Overall4Food3Service4Ambience4

Been coming here for years. New menu seemed a little truncated, and am never keen in laminated menus. If you can get a seat outside.

T
London
1 review
Dined on 28 June 2017
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Excellent service, great food, well priced, perfect place for a quick catch up and business meal.

MS
London
10 reviews
Dined on 12 April 2017
Overall4Food3Service4Ambience4

With a choice of eating downstairs in the quieter part of restaurant or casually eating and drinking upstairs around and near the bar.
Choice of easy to eat shared platters or full 3 course menu covers all bases IMO upstairs and downstairs

R
London
3 reviews
Dined on 10 March 2017
Overall4Food5Service5Ambience4

Traditional city bar and restaurant. Restaurant downstairs more formal and a teeny bit stuffy but the food and service is lovely. Would recommend all year round as the outside seating is lovely in summer.

M
London
17 reviews
Dined on 7 February 2017
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience4

V good ambience friendly service as usual .
V good food and generous portions . Good wine list . Good bar food as well

M
London
17 reviews
Dined on 18 January 2017
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience4

Good food friendly service good wines .
Scallops very good . Boeuf bourginon good.

OT
London
1 review
Dined on 13 January 2017
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience4

Very good place. Excellent service;food good and very well priced. Most certainly will come again. Thank you.

WGL Malone

LR
Kent
116 reviews
Dined on 1 December 2016
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience4

Friendly welcome when we arrived, wasn't 100% sure they had registered that I'd reserved but they clearly had as I've had the Review prompt! Service was efficient to begin with but when we needed a bit more time to order we didn't get approached for quite some time after that and in the end had to ask to order. Food arrived promptly though once we had and no long gap between courses. Food I think was good value for money - had expected it to be dearer if I'm honest. Had a good chicken, chorizo and chickpea stew, gravadlax starter. Calamari was also excellent. Only thing I would say is that the mains were very large portions - we couldn't finish them! The one champagne they offer by the glass was well worth it and not overly dear.

s
London
47 reviews
Dined on 9 November 2016
Overall4Food4Service5Ambience3

A restaurant is tucked at the corner. Very efficient front desk & seated us downstairs at a comfortable corners. The menu has good variety. Food & drinks arrived promptly. My Dover sole is huge. Veg & potatoes at no extra cost. Excellent service throughout the meal even though the restaurant was very busy with al the city workers dining at the same time.
Our bill is just over £100 for 2 ,3 courses with tea & coffee, very good value for money .
Just a reminder, the food portion is big.

T
London
23 reviews
Dined on 12 October 2016
Overall3Food4Service3Ambience4

Have been here a few times for a drink, first time eating. Mains were a little slow turning up but food was lovely and excellent value. Will be back for sure.

LR
Kent
116 reviews
Dined on 23 August 2016
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience5

Quick service, great food - literally had 75 minutes for this meal (which they didn't know) but the timing of the service meant that we were spot on in terms of when we needed to leave. That included an aperitif and main courses with wine. Veal Milanese well executed and a decent size; fishcakes were great. Wish I'd had time for starters but next time will have a more leisurely lunch. Love the side alley where the tables are - it's never really sunny there as between buildings but has such ambience with the buzz of passers-by in Bow Lane. Feels quite continental.

N
London
3 reviews
Dined on 5 August 2016
Overall5Food4Service4Ambience4

Great sitting outside on a warm day, but fresh and tasty seafood and good quality wine make this experience in the centre of London pretty special. Good service, reasonable prices (for London) and a real buzz. An excellent lunch.

TW
London
7 reviews
Dined on 28 April 2016
Overall3Food3Service3Ambience4

Had a very nice business lunch. Despite being in the basement the room was bright and interesting with lots of art on the walls. The layout is very full however the close diners didn't intrude on our conversation. Service was attentive and pleasant. The food was good however there were literally no vegetables. My guest had liver and bacon which was served with mash and onion gravy and nothing green in sight. Sadly there were no side dishes on offer either. This is a shame as otherwise I'd be more of a regular.

OT
London
1 review
Dined on 3 March 2016
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience4

Lovely food, lovely atmosphere. Great staff and ambience. Would recommend for a number of different occasions.

SJ
London
45 reviews
Dined on 12 February 2016
Overall3Food3Service4Ambience3

Falls into the category of "City institution" with the impression the clientele hasn't changed for decades - and quite probably the decor and possibly the menu! Having said that, more than acceptable, fish starters were very good, fishcake main had more than a hint of school dining room which was the only negative.

R
London
1 review
Dined on 13 November 2015
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Good food, good value, good service. Somewhere you can have lunch and not be overheard by the next table or drowned out by the conversation of others . The staff are very friendly and the service is extremely good. A nice, quiet restaurant which at the same time does not lose it's atmosphere in the heart of the City - quite rare.

TG
London
1 review
Dined on 15 September 2015
Overall4Food5Service5Ambience5

Great tasting food, main meal portions were generous too. Food good value, wines a little pricey.

PS
London
4 reviews
Dined on 2 September 2015
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience4

Came here for an informal business lunch with colleagues. I picked the venue based on some reviews I'd read as I didn't want to go anywhere too formal or too casual. This place was just right. Good location and a nicely balanced City vibe atmosphere.
The Restaurant is downstairs and set in nice surroundings. The drinks trolley at the back was a point of interest. The waitress was back and forth at the table a lot and it came across as fussing a bit too much at first but this settled down once the food arrived. Service was good overall.
The food was very good! Starters ordered were soup of the day (courgette and leek?), deep fried calamari and an avocado and shrimp cocktail salad. Good size portions, thumbs up all round. The calamari is a must!
Mains ordered were chicken supreme (not the white sauce kind) with chorizo filling, tiger prawn linguini, tiger prawns in white wine sauce with jasmine rice and chicken parmigiana. The chicken parmigiana was a bit overdone but not detrimentally so. The tiger prawns in white wine sauce was an unusual dish but the kick of chilli helped bring the tastes together and was good. The chicken supreme with chorizo filling looked amazing and I'm told the chicken was very tender and very tasty.
No room for desserts unfortunately but will definitely make an effort to have dessert on the next visit as they looked good. Bottle of Albarino wine and a couple of drinks were ordered for the table, all of which seemed to go down well.
All in all, a very pleasant lunch with very nice food. Prices are justifiable. I can see why the place is popular and a return visit will be in order.

DD
London
71 reviews
Dined on 15 July 2015
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience3

Nice outside area, really strong chicken main and great service and ambience

NN
London
22 reviews
Dined on 3 July 2015
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience4

It is a pleasure to eat at Bow Wine Vaults.

The food is always delicious and the service is quick and polite. Looking forward to the next opportunity to book.