four o nine – hidden gem in Clapham

At the moment, this is my favourite dinner venue in Clapham. Hidden away round the corner from The Clapham North bar (opposite the tube), you have to buzz to get in, making it feel special from the moment you arrive.

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The decor is cosy and romantic (a bit like a speakeasy) and there’s a bar if you fancy a pre-dinner drink. We opted to go straight to our table, were offered some water and given our menus, with the host letting me know that the chef had marked on my menu the items I couldn’t have (which was only a few things and was an impressive touch). Soon after we were presented with some gluten free amuse bouche (another nice touch).

We ordered our food and some wine (a lovely Malbec) and were asked if we would like some bread. I gestured at my friend to see if he would like some, assuming I couldn’t have any, but I was pleasantly surprised when the host said they had gluten free bread for me. When it arrived it was warm – another impressive touch.

I had an asparagus and creme fraiche soup for starter, with gluten free bread. It was tasty, but could have done with a bit more salt. My friend had the tuna and said it was great. For main, we both had the bavette steak and shared some hand cut chips. It was well cooked and the jus complemented it well.

The desserts looked good and there were some great gluten free options, but we decided we were too full to have any.

The real icing on the cake was when the bill came and it had cost us only about £30 each as we were on the 50% menu from top table. All in all a special find in Clapham – great value, great atmosphere, great food and great service.

Recommendation: ask your knowledgeable host for a recommendation

Overall score: 4.5/5 (special, but the odd dish lacking in flavour)
Gluten dodging score: 5/5 (know their stuff and actively cater for gf)

Price: ££

Website: http://www.fouronine.co.uk/

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