Restroom Impossible: Dining in London’s Former Lavatories

London’s growing trend of toilets-turned-cafés and bars has us flushed with intrigue
Credit: facebook/ WCClapham

It took the owners of WC in Clapham over two years to convert a former public toilet into a wine and charcuterie bar.

Derelict, underground public restrooms around town are now converted into trendy restaurants, boutiques, bars, and nightclubs - a peculiar solution to the problem of the city’s overcrowded real estate. 

The biggest splash of recent for foodies is WC (which stands for wine and charcuterie), a smart Clapham wine bar lined with reclaimed mosaic tiles and stall doors from its former days as the original WC. Diners can nosh on premium meat and cheese boards along with excellent small plate offerings, including a foie gras parfait for two with cornichons and bread (£10).

Crafty use of the loo streams east to Hackney, where The Convenience bar takes over at night where NANA Café serves dishes and desserts during the day. Until they find a nightly resident chef, The Convenience hosts pop-up food merchants such as Hanoi Kitchen and Club Mexicana. If the thought of lingering inside a former toilet makes you squeamish, you can head to their roof terrace for guaranteed fresh air. 

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While the prospect of eating in a former bathroom space might not appeal to everyone, you can’t deny this London foodie movement is a wee bit exciting.