I spend a lot of my time in bars (*hic*) and rarely feel the need to do a ‘review’ on here as such, a passing comment or shout-out in The Week That Was is usually enough, but I really do think The Fulham Wine Rooms has a cool enough concept to deserve a little more explanation.
Based at the Munster Road end of The Fulham Road, it’s not a bar I go to very often because I tend to drink further up the Kings Road/Fulham Road, but having stumbled home from there last Friday night I think I need to make it a much more regular haunt.
I’d been a couple of times before but always for friends’ birthdays in a large group, which doesn’t really do the concept justice I don’t think. I’d had fun and drank great wine on both those previous visits, but I’d always thought I should go back and ‘do it properly’, so when Katie and I were looking for somewhere to go boozing on Friday night I suggested we went there.
It’s a wine bar – yes – but what’s super cool about this place is that they have a fun ‘serve yourself’ system which is done with clever computerised fridge wizardry and Oyster type ‘top up’ cards.
You can of course just order bottles of wine from their extensive menu (200ish to choose from), but the tasting is the really fun bit in my opinion.
There are loads of wines that you can self-serve by the glass (a whopping 48, to be precise) and the menu comes with decent tasting notes and is helpfully in price order, as are the display bottles, so you can start cheap and ‘work your way up’ if you choose to. (You can go all the way up to a £45 a glass wine, if you’re feeling particularly flush!).
We started with the cheapest wines and then progressed to the pricier ones as it’s a fun way of comparing different grapes and seeing if the spendier ones really do taste that much better. (There’s no cheap and nasty wine here though, so don’t worry about having anything that isn’t fab).
You just put your card in to the relevant fridge and then use a touch screen to select your wine and pour size.
You have the option of three different pour sizes: a taster size (not stingy at all!), a standard glass or a large glass. We mostly just had taster glasses and then treated ourselves to a full glass every so often when we found one we really liked. Awesomely, the taster glasses are fairly priced as a proportion of their larger sisters…so it’s not more expensive to go for taster glasses. The price per ml is the same regardless of what portion you choose, which we were pleasantly surprised by….