Within Clapham there are two clearly marked territories. The Clapham High Street and surrounds are home to the younger city / west end crowd, whilst the Junction is better known as Nappy Valley. Visit there in the daytime to understand why. Yet the Junction has changed over the last few years, and dear I say, some of its drinking haunts are approaching 'coolness'. Albeit begrudgingly. First among equals in the cool bar stakes is
The Holy Drinker on Northcote Road . A cafe style drinking den that becomes very pre-club as the evening goes on.
I recently visited there with my main critic-in-chief The Engineer, and was pleasantly surprised to find a place that in terms of music, people and vibe would not look out of place in Soho. And I mean that as a compliment.
As you would expected from a converted shop, the bar is longer then it is wide, and is split into three sections, most of which are tabled to allow the girls to rest their heel tortured legs.
Having said that come 10pm and pain seems to have disappeared, as the rear of the bar goes all mini-disco with the lasses doing the seductive dance thing, while rugger types ogle them over their lagers. The music is a mix of RnB and commerical dance, and the drinks on offer are your now standard mix of semi-exotic lagers, new world wines and classic cocktails with a 'twist' (i.e. a new name).
Re-reading my description and I feel I am probably underselling this place, as it is a very good bar. The staff are excellent and the vibe is fun without being remotely cheesy or 'pick-up'y.
I would generally not recommend a visit to the Nappy Valley for a night out, but if you are going to be down that way, do check out the Holy Drinker