London’s new wave wine bars


In contrast to the weighty, 500-bin wine list, the menu at CVS is small, perfectly formed and designed for sharing.With an Italian chef at the helm, on-trend burrata makes an appearance, as does crispy baby squid, buttermilk frog’s legs, described by Evening Standard restaurant critic Fay Maschler as “balletic” in their delicacy, and the Posh Madame – a croque madame stuffed with a quail egg and truffled prosciutto.

Cheese, not surprisingly, comes from neighbouring Neal’s Yard. Among the wines currently on offer by the glass are Albert Mann Cuvée Albert 2012 (£9), Egon Müller Mosel Riesling 2011 (£10) and J.F Mugnier Clos de la Marechale Nuits St Georges 2009 (£17).

For those of a daring nature, there is also the option of a “Mystery Wine”, priced at £9 a glass, which guests are given a bottle of on the house if they manage to identify it. With the luxury of two Enomatic machines, Château d’Yquem 1997 is currently on pour for £38 a 7cl glass, while a 125ml glass of Château Figeac 2008 will set you back £30 and an equal measure of L.B Dagueneau Silex 2010 costs £32.

With ambitious expansion plans, a third CVS is due to open in New York next month, though Oudill is keen to stay in London rather than assist with the launch.

“The London bar is my baby, so I want to help get it off the ground before I move on,” she says. There’s also the wine shop to think about. Due to open next door to CVS, it will offer many of the wines on the list to go. “I want to open a tasting room above the shop and run thematic tastings every Tuesday,” enthuses Oudill.

Like The Remedy’s Clawson, she has noticed a shift in the way consumers think about wine. “We’re all about helping people discover and engage with wine. People care about what they consume now, both food and drink. There’s a desire to go back to the source,” she says.

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