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and what the professional critics say
"Let’s start with a restaurant that has ideas above its station – Vauxhall station, to be precise. Counter is the best thing that’s happened to Vauxhall – perhaps ever."
"Counter is the smartest addition yet – a beautifully designed space with echoes of art-deco whose mirror-adorned walls and comfortable booths are picked out in grey, with warm yellow lighting creating a cosy vibe despite the industrial surrounds...Historic pictures of a well-to-do Vauxhall far removed from its present-day incarnation line the corridor between the two dining rooms. With the likes of Counter setting the wheels in motion, the area might yet become a destination in itself."
"Top 10 Restaurants for Counter Dining in London"
"COUNTER is Vauxhall's neighbourhood institution"
“'A 'hipster' railway arch near Vauxhall tube houses this funky yearling. It serves a versatile array of brasserie dishes, plus cocktails, with top billing going to the 'American style brunch'"
"That Vauxhall should have a destination restaurant would have sounded like an oxymoron a decade or so ago, but so successful has the renovation of the area been that it now seems normal that Counter should take that moniker."
"With a fantastic fine wine selection and delicious cocktails to boot, this unassuming brasserie tucked under Vauxhall’s arches is a must visit. Soft on lighting and big on flavour, COUNTER has set the bar for SW8."
"The evening begins with a collection of BackCOUNTER’s amazing cocktails – these are the perfect sidekick to an evening of camp cabaret and sassy shenanigans. But if you’re not a drinker never fear, the food on offer is brilliant as well. We indulged in the sea bass – which was heavenly – along with a side dish of mac and cheese balls… Yes that sounds slightly bizarre, but trust us, it’s fantastic. It’s so nice to see a relatively new venue in the centre of Vauxhall, providing a sophisticated yet relaxed atmosphere to the LGBT+ community."
"The place comes into its own at weekend brunch when the demanding denizens of the nearby gay clubs hold court."
"Under the arches in Vauxhall, this all-day brasserie dishes up coffee and croissants to morning commuters before moving on to a Franco-American menu (and matching wine list) served up at the bar or in cozy booths."
"The restaurant is cool, quirky and is without a doubt putting Vauxhall on the culinary map."
"Smart yet relaxed, it dishes up Franco-American cuisine and the vibe is decidedly of the latter. I felt New York vibes sitting there. It’s grand, cool and unapologetically ‘now’. "
"The beautifully designed restaurant would be the perfect setting for a dinner party - and with the large bar and extensive menu you could really be there all night"
"COUNTER Vauxhall Arches are giving Londoners the perfect excuse to brunch saaaafff of the river with the launch of its ALL DAY weekend bottomless brunch."
"If you are looking for proper portion sizes that fill a hungry man, a good accessible location and decent booze then Counter deserves to be visited. It is a gem."
"The beautifully designed space, which is full of grey booths, pretty mirrors and warm, yellow lighting, really is worth stopping off for and should definitely be put on your 'to do' list."
"That's the thing about COUNTER. It reads a lot like an M&S ad. This is not just a restaurant, it is a Vauxhall bar & brasserie with a deco disco to boot. Simply worth a visit, and quickly"
"Counter is a must for anyone in Vauxhall and also easily justifies a few minutes on the over ground for those in central. It’s a quirky, fun and relaxed spot with the option of amazingly cooked comfort foods or if your mood suits something more adventurous – get down there and check it out."
"Our visit overall felt more personal and inviting (with excellent food!) and that is exactly why I would recommend this as a place you need to add your to-do list."
"Offering seriously good bang for your buck, book in quick before the secret gets out. With such a vast menu and attentive table service, I’ll be gathering the girls and heading back as soon as the booze ban is lifted!"
"Counter is reason alone to visit Vauxhall, just steps from the station it’s a valuable addition to the area"
"Counter could very well be set in the heart of the fashionable Meat Packing District of Manhattan… It’s just underneath the arches, and it’s an all-day brasserie, serving from a super yummy brunch with a huge variety of cocktails to all-day varied menu"
"It’s cool, it’s edgy, its doors are from 7am until late (8am at weekends). And its steak is bloody good.Oh, and it’s the longest bar in London."
"The location couldn’t be more convenient but it’s the food and the service that are the cornerstones to success in a city that boasts plenty of choice."
"I had expected to enjoy Brunch at Counter Vauxhall Arches and I did. It’s a casual spot with polish. The menu offers something for every taste and appetite and the service is friendly."
"Counter will do well, of this I have no doubt; not just because ‘if you build it they will come’ – Vauxhall has been crying out for this kind of place for years and now its cries have been answered – but because it’s actually very good."
"COUNTER brings a touch of New York’s ‘happening’ Meatpacking District to what is Europe’s largest urban regeneration area and is the top casual dining destination in this exciting neighbourhood."
"Everything, yes everything, is good. The food is high quality and presented beautifully but there’s no wanky descriptions or snobbery. The service is relaxed, yet glasses never go unfilled and all questions are easily answered. It is, as far as we see, a well-oiled machine chugging away quietly under the archway."
"Vauxhall is home to some of London’s more exotic night time activities, but fine dining isn’t among them – not traditionally anyway. Step up Counter, an eclectic new Franco-American offering nestled neatly under the railway arches that manages to muffle the cries for an interesting, independent bar and restaurant in the area. Situated directly next to the Vauxhall railway station, it’s an ideal spot for a post-work meal or drinks with friends."
"Counter offers a wealth of dining opportunities; a place for early morning clubbing stragglers to eat brunch, an alternative option for contemporary food lovers or a relaxed bar lounge where you can enjoy a cocktail whilst kicking back with friends… Counter is non-chain, a complete one-off, which only further cements its appeal. The employees at Counter further solidify this restaurant from ‘good’ to ‘great’, their local knowledge and confident manoeuvring of the menu seems to be motivated by a real affection for the idiosyncratic place they work in."
"If you are the sort of short attention-spanned human being who won't make it to the end of this review, let me summarise it for you in seven short words – book a table at Counter right now! This brasserie/cocktail bar/club is the very rarest of finds; a place that manages to be hip without sacrificing quality in the process."
"A quirky menu with some unexpected flavour combinations in the heart of the Vauxhall gay scene. I’m going back to work my way through that knock-out cocktail list!"
"Despite it’s location in the heart of Vauxhall, it’s a place that deserves to be a destination restaurant rather than just somewhere for bored commuters to pass through. The cooking is good, and the ambience is pleasant. It’s a strong find in a neighbourhood that’s crying out for decent dining options."
"For those looking for something new and fresh, COUNTER brings the traditional brasserie firmly into the 21st century... COUNTER is definitely worth a visit and is a welcome addition to the pleasure-seeking neighbourhood of Vauxhall."
"When one's looking for a classy restaurant that serves brunch, Vauxhall doesn't necessarily spring to mind. While the Vauxhall area has been slowly becoming gentrified over the past few years, it has a reputation for being a bit seedy and lacking any decent restaurants - until COUNTER came along."
"We left feeling satisfied, but without that horrid greasy ‘ugh’ aftertaste that many indulgent restaurants offer – as everything was cooked to perfection and it felt like ‘treat’ food. This had everything you could ask for in a romantic dinner for two – good food, great drinks and a fantastic environment, without the ridiculous London price tag associated."
"Those who appreciate architecture and good food will feel at home here."
"As soon as you’re inside it all feels a bit more a trendy neighbourhood in New York rather than, errr, Vauxhaull."
"Ensconced in an arch in Vauxhall, it’s Counter! Cutlery tinkles, champagne sprinkles and cute waiters saunter between the tables, holding aloft steaming platters of gorgeous melt-in-the-mouth halibut, or even, perhaps, a bowl of macaroni & cheese balls, which are HEAVEN. ON. A. PLATE."
"Be sure to pay a visit and be one of the first to enjoy and desire a menu to fit perfectly in anyone’s top eateries in London, with a passionate mission to keep the LGBTI community alive and thriving wherever it may land."
"A minutes walk from Vauxhall Station, just south of the river Thames, COUNTER is a smart addition to the neighbourhood, attracting those seeking hearty brunches and speciality coffee from across the capital."
"The drinks were some of the best cocktails we have had in a while. Particularly impressed with the alcohol measures (you could taste that they definitely weren’t watered down!). PAUSE favourite was the Espresso Martini; In fact the best in London in our opinion."
"This modern bar with subtle New York vibes has transformed one of the derelict arches, smack bang next to Vauxhall station; an ambitious addition to the over looked neighbourhood. "
"As Vauxhall changes, it’s great to know that there’s already a neighbourhood feel to the area and you really got a sense of that in Counter. It didn’t feel like a restaurant that was just for gays, but was for everyone to enjoy. So whether you’re off to The RVT and fancy a pre theatre dinner, looking somewhere cool to go for after work drinks or even if you need some fuel before a night of clubbing, Counter in Vauxhall is the place where you can get have it all."
"If you’re looking for an elegant restaurant with great vibes and respectable prices, then Counter in Vauxhall could be the perfect spot… The greatest asset of Counter is its diversity and ability to satisfy a variety of customers from families to couples to parties."