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Headed south of the river & hungry? Read on…

South London is home to some of the best BYOBs in London. From Waterloo just south of the river to Wimbledon, right over to Greenwich and every hot spot in between, we’ve selected the very best of the bunch. Click a link to skip right to the area you’re headed:


Waterloo

Marie’s Cafe

Thai BYOB in Waterloo

Greasy spoons by day and super casual Thai food by night – Marie’s cafe is one of the best value Thai places to eat in London. More often than not you’ll find a queue outside, a social stamp of approval for any London eatery.

Get the sharing platter – it’s just 8 quid – and you get a little bit of everything. Perfect for those of us who suffer from FOMO. Check out the Pad Thai and the Massaman curry, 2 of our favourite mains.

You can’t book online but you can ring ahead and book a table the old fashioned way so we here at BYOB London recommend reserving a table in advance to avoid disappointment and/or getting drenched. There’s no corkage fee and you’re free to bring whatever alcoholic drinks you want. They also sell a variety of soft drinks for non-drinkers. It’s cash only, so bring notes otherwise it’s a bit of a walk to the nearest cash machine.


Vauxhall

Bonnington Cafe

Veggie & Vegan Community BYOB

Vauxhall is home to the Bonnington Cafe, a community run vegan & vegetarian cafe. A gem tucked away on a leafy square 5 minutes walk from Vauxhall Station.

As it’s community ran the menu changes on a weekly basis – ideal as it means you’ll keep on coming back to fresh new dishes. Dishes come at flat fees – starters cost £3.50 – £4.00, mains are £9.00 and desserts are £3.50-£4.00. It’s cash only so remember to draw some notes out beforehand as the closest is at Vauxhall Station. There’s a Sainsbury’s at Vauxhall Station too so be sure to pick up a bottle of wine (or whatever you prefer).

Be sure to book ahead, it’s busy most week nights and often books up on Fridays and Saturdays.




Balham

Tagine

Moroccan feast in the heart of Balham

Located on the Northern line, Balham is home to Tagine, a Moroccan BYOB restaurant (a rarity in the UK).

There is a mix of a traditional and contemporary Moroccan theme going on indoors which is nice and a great environment for both groups and couples. It’s a much more chilled vibe than you would expect from another type of BYOB such as a curry house. There are hanging lamps, an outside seating area and a basement lounge to relax.

Tagine specialises in tagines (as you might expect) and mixed grills. Their variety of tagines is well worth exploring, from lamb and lamb shank tagines to fish tagines – the cooking method combined with the fresh ingredients means that naturally means these are very tasty and we’ve yet to have been disappointed. There are also a few vegetarian options available such as their stuffed baked aubergine and couscous salad. Mains start from around £15 each and most come served with potato or couscous.


Clapham

Counter Culture

Locally sourced British style tapas
  • £10 corkage for wine, free for cider & beer
  • Best BYOB in Clapham
  • Take me there

One of the more cultured and sophisticated BYOB restaurants we’ve featured, Counter Culture is a quaint little restaurant located just off Clapham Common. They serve small plates in a small setting (with capacity for just 14 people), Counter Culture serves up dishes that have been meticulously and passionately crafted with locally sourced ingredients.

There menu is usually quite small but changes often depending on what the talented and creative chefs conjure up. Dishes as mentioned are small plates (think tapas style sharing) and range from £6-£8. We’d recommend around 3 each – you can always order more if you’re particularly peckish.

Ideal place for a date, you can book online on their website. It’s definitely worth booking ahead if you’re planning to go on a Thursday, Friday or Saturday as it fills up quickly (it’s closed on Sundays & Mondays). There are tons of places to pick up a nice bottle of wine or lager nearby – corkage is £10 for a bottle of wine whilst there’s no corkage charge for beer or cider.

Check out the map here




Brixton

KaoSarn

The best Thai BYOB in Brixton – ideal for groups

KaoSarn is a family-run Thai cafer/restaurant located in Brixton Village. In such a bustling area full of amazing restaurants and cafes, KaoSarn is one of the best and it’s BYOB.

As far as the mains go, we really recommend the panang curry and the massaman lamb curry. The sticky white rice is the perfect accompaniment. Mains generally range from £6-£8 with exception for a few of the larger specials or sharers.

We’ve never been to KaoSarn without it being busy so really recommend booking ahead if you’re thinking about it (especially if there’s more than a couple of you). Corkage is free.


Peckham

Oi Spaghetti + tiramasu

BYOB Pasta!
  • Mountains of delicious pasta
  • Cool little cabin location
  • Corkage is a few quid
  • Take me there

When you think of BYOB you don’t normally think of Italian or pasta, until Oi Spaghetti came along.

This place is small – like really small. Inside there are just 4 tables, when the weather’s nice they open it up into the wider outside space at the Bussey Building and its capacity grows somewhat. As it’s so cosy the chef is within touching distance which adds to the intimate experience.

The menu is succinct. Nibbles consist of bruschettas, salads and mozzarella options, whilst the mains consist of 4-5 main course pasta dishes, including veggie only, meat and fish options so you shouldn’t be lost for a dish that catches your fancy. The pasta is as fresh as it comes and the flavours are outstanding, with each dish special in its own way. The pasta here is a serious rival to Padella and Flour & Grape for the best pasta in London.  The tiramasu is also worth getting – it’s so good it made it into their name.


Flamin Mangal

Turkish BYOB in Peckham with big portions

Peckham is home to some fantastic BYOB restaurants and also enjoys a wide variety of different cuisines. Flamin Mangal is one of them. As well as the usual fare you might expect from a Turkish grill, they also offer a variety of seafood dishes which are very reasonably priced (especially for the portion size).

This place is deceptively big – there’s a huge restaurant at the back with additional space for parties or large group sittings. The atmosphere here is great, a mix of groups, dates, families and pre-cinema meals (Peckham Plex is just round the corner and all films are £5).

Starters are around the £5 mark, whilst mains range from £10-£13 depending on what you fancy. If you’re with a group we’d highly recommend the mixed grill to share so everyone can sample a bit of everything. If you don’t fancy meat, go for the sea bass and sea bream – delicious when cooked on the grill. Veggies will be happy to hear there’s a good selection including vegetable kebabs, falafels and salads.

Corkage is free and due to its size you can often just walk right in (despite it being busy).




Yadas Kurdish Restaurant

Cool spot under the arches

Yadas Kurdish Restaurant is one of the coolest BYOB spots in South London. It’s located under the railway arches and just around the corner from Peckham Rye station (see map above for directions).

There’s seating indoors and outside (on 2 levels if busy). The interior is a mix of traditional and contemporary design. It’s a charming space – during the day it might seem a little rough around the edges (that’s kind of it’s style, as most walls and surfaces are covered in graffiti), on an evening however it really comes into its own with lights draped across the exterior – it’s a great place to eat outside if the weather’s decent.

Get a meze to start. For a main the range of shawarma types here are is awesome, we’d recommend the mixed meat grill if sharing, you get a bit of everything (even rice, though you will want to order more as you don’t get a load). Veggies and vegetarians are well covered too, they’ve got a few different sharers that come with an array of Kurdish dips.

Corkage is free and there’s also an outside area and shisha available if you fancy a smoke.


Wimbledon

Little Vietnam

Vietnamese BYOB in Wimbledon

Little Vietnam is a family run Vietnamese restaurant location in South Wimbledon. You’ll find everything here you might expect from a Vietnamese; from Pho noodle soup to spicy curries & fried rice.

To start we recommend the summer spring rolls and Banh Cuon (which are kind of like soft rice crepes). The pho here is wonderfully and authentically flavoured (I find some popular chains pho kind of bland) and as a result is one of the big hits here. If you don’t fancy gulping down pho then you can’t go wrong with their choice of curries or the Bun Thit Nuong (grilled pork which comes with vermicelli noodles).

Little Vietnam takes cash only however there’s a Sainsburys just a few doors down with a cash machine so you can grab drinks (corkage is free) and cash easily.


Greenwich

Zaibatsu

Awesome Japanese BYOB in London

Zaibatsu may be out the way for most however, take it from us, it’s well worth the trip. Modest looking both inside and out, the food is special and very fairly priced.

It’s a quaint little Japanese fusion restaurant, serving up a broad range of Japanese dishes, from sushi and salads to rice dishes, katsu curries (including a veggie option too), noodle dishes and even laksa style soup. It’s much cheaper than the flash ‘Sticks n Sushi’ further down the road; appetisers are around the £3-£4 range whilst mains will set you back £5-£9 depending on what you get. Large sushi sets are about £15 but you can get them individually for much cheaper.

We recommend you check out the black cod tempura to start or share (though you may want to keep it yourself!). Sushi at Zaibatsu is a big hit, it’s fresh and presented very well. The laksa can’t be beaten if you’re hungry and it’s cold out.

Get along to Zaibatsu if you can, it’s just around the corner from Maze Hill train station and a short walk from the Greenwich DLR. Book ahead if you can, it’s a local favourite and gets busy. Corkage is free & it’s cash only.

 

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