New on Wine List Confidential: Berners Tavern

Matteo Montone, garlanded as one of the top four sommeliers in the UK, oversees a thoughtful and wide ranging list available in an art-filled dining room.

Recently garlanded as one of the top four sommeliers in the UK by esteemed and active international culinary society, Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, head sommelier, Matteo Montone previously worked at The Ritz and Locanda Locatelli. At the art swathed Berners Tavern, which remains one of the most breathtaking dining rooms in the capital, he deploys a list celebrating the New World, particularly so California (Caymus, Insignia, Opus One) and Australia (Cullen, Grosset, Henschke), while maintaining a steady hand on the classics, including flights of Vega Siclia, Sassicaia, Barbarescos and Barolos, and renditions of top-tier Burgundy and Bordeaux.

Montone has increased the breadth of labels substantially, making Berners Tavern a grand destination which is, for wine lovers, more than skin deep. ‘In April 2017, we had 320 wines on our list; now we have 800,’ he says. That figure includes home-grown Hattingley and jeroboams of chic Franciacorta, Ca’ del Bosco, alongside a handful of grower Champagnes, rarities such as 1970 Dom Pérignon, and a back catalogue of Ruinart, including big bottle format. Indeed, Montone recalls the private dinner held at the venue for Frieze. ‘Guests had been to preview the Frieze Sculpture during the day then came back to Berners Tavern to experience a dinner paired with Ruinart, including Dom Ruinart 2006. A special evening blending art and Champagne…’

Overseen by Jason Atherton and realised by Phil Carmichael, a former BBC Great British Menu ambassador for Wales, dishes are particularly wine friendly, and may include pork pie served table-side, roast Dover sole on the bone, chicken schnitzel, and caramel apple éclair with Calvados cream, possibly with a glass of Moscato d’Asti (Contero).

To see the WLC position and scores for this review click here


Wine List Confidential, brought to you by the drinks business, is the first platform to rank London’s restaurants on the strength of their wine list alone, providing a comprehensive guide to the best restaurants in the capital for wine lovers.

Restaurants are graded on a 100-point scale based on five criteria: size, value, service, range and originality. For a full guide to London’s best wine lists visit

the drinks business published the inaugural 2017 Wine List Confidential: One to Sixty-One guide last year. We are currently working on a new 2018 edition and are busy re-reviewing top-scoring restaurants and adding new entries to the database. Check back later in the year for final scoring and position of restaurants. 

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