The diversity of Peckham has always been one of its defining characteristics and this is now reflected in the varied style and cosmopolitan themes of its best bars. Rooftop bars are ever-popular, where guests can enjoy the open-air environment, great views and the relaxed company of friends.
The menus on offer reflect the willingness of London diners to try new tastes, including Dominican, American, Italian, Indian, Korean, and Caribbean among others. These are just a few of the attractions that pull in local diners and those from nearby boroughs.
Best Peckham Bars
Near & Far Peckham Levels
- Address: Level 6, 95A Rye Ln, SE15 4ST
- Phone: 020 3983 7650
Since opening its doors in December 2017, Near & Far Peckham Levels, has cemented its place among the other varied bars and eateries of Peckham. Near and Far refers to the amazing, panoramic views from the window seats across the London skyline.
The interior is funky and designed by the multi-award-winning team at Finch Interiors. The decor uses a varied palette of pinks, coppers, greens, anand d neon, set off with palm trees and disco balls. The bar is tiled with plenty of smart stools, while for longer chats, squidgy sofas and chairs offer relaxation.
To drink, Near & Far lists more than 17 original, quirky signature cocktails and mocktails, as well as juices, wine, bottled beer, and ciders. The choice of spirits and liqueurs is also extensive with a good choice of tequila and mescal.
Near & Far just serves brunch at the weekend at 1 PM and 3:30 PM, which includes cocktails and changing food options such as pizza, Indian, Korean, and Nigerian dishes.
In addition, visitors to the bar are welcome to buy food from the nearby food stalls and eat it in the bar with a drink. Happy Hour runs every Sun-Fri from 5 -7 PM. Two similar cocktails for £10.
Bussey Rooftop Bar
- Address: Roof B, Bussey Building, 133 Rye Ln, SE15 4ST
- Phone: 020 7635 6655
What could possibly go wrong with zinging cocktails and regular comedy acts at Bussey Rooftop Bar! With several of the dates sold out, it’s clearly a crowd puller.
The rooftop bar has stunning views across London and the long pergola is intertwined with leaves and flowers for colour. Table heaters can be moved around for chilly evenings.
To drink there are cocktails and mocktails, as well as beer on tap. And to eat, pizza made on the premises served with antipasto sides. The pizza gets the thumbs up from numerous diners, who comment the flavours are simple but are beautifully put together. Look out for Happy Hour!
- Address: 42 Peckham Rye, SE15 4JR
- Email: [email protected]
Trading since 2018, Sergio and Anna, the brains behind Funkidory, saw the opportunity for a smaller intimate cocktail and wine bar for Peckham locals. The couple has extensive experience in the London bar and events scene, and they decided to pair this experience with their shared love of funk/hip hop and soul music.
With stylishly coloured dark walls and plenty of prints, the bar has a reputation as somewhere you will receive a warm welcome and be able to hear some great music. There is a selection of cocktails and mocktails, as well as wine by the glass or bottle.
Funkidory is open from 5 PM – 11 PM Tues-Thurs and 5 PM – 12 PM Fri & Sat.
Two Hundred Rye Lane
- Address: 200 Rye Ln, SE15 4NF
- Phone: 07487 747339
Two Hundred Rye Lane has been receiving rave reviews for some time. Tucked away down Rye Lane it’s often quoted as something of a ‘hidden gem’. The cocktails are extensive and reasonably priced, along with a short menu of beers wines and ciders.
The decor is modern and simple.
To eat there is a wide selection of tapas-style small plate dishes. Some are Spanish but others are Italian, such as mozzarella arancini and British, such as pulled beef brisket. The dishes are artfully presented on coloured plates. Small plates are served from 4 PM until 10 PM.
- Address: Theatre Walk (in between Peckham Library and Mountview College) 120 Peckham Hill St, SE15 5JT
- Email: [email protected]
The open-plan rooftop setting for Skylight Peckham creates an immediately inviting space to while away a few hours with friends. Expansive rooftop views across the capital’s skyline, greenery around the perimeter walls and pendant lighting all come together to make a stylish setting. Plenty of tables and comfy banquette seating give a sense of space.
To drink there is an array of cocktails, mocktails, classics, and spritzers, as well as draft beers, wines, available by the glass or bottle, and a good selection of sparkling wine and champagne.
Lunchtime is generous during the week running from 12 PM to 5 PM and includes dishes such as BBQ pulled beef brisket burger and skylight pastrami toastie, made from grilled sourdough, pastrami, truffle gouda & Montgomery cheese, and hand-made dill pickle.
The dinner menu has an eclectic range of cuisines and dishes are presented as small plates, sharing platters along with a selection of sides. Brunch is served Saturday and Sunday 10 AM – 5 PM and includes the usual brunch dishes, as well as rock oysters and sides. As a remedy of sorts there are also a selection of hair-of-the-dog brunch cocktails.
John The Unicorn
- Address: 157-159 Rye Ln, SE15 4TL
- Phone: 020 7732 8483
John The Unicorn is a friendly gay bar in the heart of Peckham Rye, conveniently just around the corner from the train station. Inside the quirky decor ranges over two stories but works to create a friendly, laid-back, and welcoming atmosphere.
At the bar craft beers and cocktails keep the party mood flowing. The owners are keen to support local businesses including craft brewers, Brick Brewery, and their Peckham Ale, as well as Notting Helles and London Pilsner from the Portobello Brewery.
The Unicorn serves a selection of handmade pizzas, canotto style crusts and burgers that get the thumbs up from diners. The canotto crusts can be dipped in a selection of dips and spicy sauces, such as Texas BBQ, which is sweet, sticky, and smoky using smoked chipotle chilli, treacle, and honey.
For variety, the kitchen also features rotating guest appearances by local pop-up street food companies. Open 5 PM – 12 AM every night and longer at the weekend. Check with the bar for DJ music nights.
Prince of Peckham Pub
- Address: 1 Clayton Rd, SE15 5JA
- Phone: 020 7635 8844
As you approach the Prince of Peckham Pub you suddenly discover huge, rich murals facing the walls. Once inside you are greeted with a welcoming, flamboyant mix of a traditional pub, artfully garnished with glitz.
For drinks, there are draft and bottled beers, wines by the glass and bottle, and exotic cocktails, all washed down with a Happy Hour from Mon-Fri 6 PM to 8 PM. For diners, the menu rotates daily offering an original selection of Caribbean and British dishes.
Examples include, Jerk Chicken Meal (Gluten-Free), created from jerk chicken smoked over wood, served with rice and peas, coleslaw, pineapple, scotch bonnet jam, and Jerk sauce.
At the weekend, Saturday sees a bottomless brunch, served between 12 PM and 4 PM. Spend a minimum of £10 on any food and for an extra £25, get unlimited sparkling wine for 2 hours. For Sundays, there are jerk-inspired roasts, such as Jerk Pork Belly and Curried Goat Shank.
Read More: Best Bars in Croydon
The CLF Art Lounge & Roof Garden
- Address: Station Way, London SE15 4RX
- Phone: 020 7635 2585
It might only be just a few yards from Peckham Rye station but it’s easy to miss the entrance to the CLF Art Lounge & Roof Garden behind its anonymous door. Inside you’ll find two levels, which couldn’t be more different.
The lower lounge is sumptuously furnished with richly coloured curtains and numerous sofas. Varied portraits cover the walls, which in turn are painted a sombre but stylish green. It’s a cosy room to enjoy a good chat over drinks.
Meanwhile upstairs, the rooftop bar has plenty of plants trailing over the partially covered pergola, which also acts as a shelter from showers.
For drinks, the CLF Art Lounge has an extensive range of original and classic cocktails and mocktails, as well as beers. Wines and Champagne are served by the glass or the bottle. Happy Hour is Wed, Thur and Fri 5 PM to 7 PM. Check out the website for regular live jazz.
The food at the CLF Art Lounge is as colourful as the lounge itself, with the Dominican-inspired menu. Dishes include Dominican tacos made from homemade tacos served with red kidney bean sauce, red onions, cilantro or avocado sauce and served with pulled beef or chicken. Main courses are served with a selection of side dishes.
- Address: Unit 4 Dovedale Trading Estate, SE15 4QN
- Phone: 07943 440398
The atmosphere of Peckham Riviera is reflected in the postal address, it would struggle to be less pretentious but that appears to be its trump card, attracting a young crowd simply looking for fun.
Squeezed in between the platforms of Peckham Rye station the bar has a large indoor/outdoor, cobbled area with plenty of plants and patio heaters, as well as four quirky inside arches. The seating is basic but perfectly functional for having a good time.
For drinks, Peckham Riviera serves a range of craft beers and their own selection of cocktails and mocktails. Happy Hour takes place every day from 6 PM to 7 PM. Buy one cocktail and get the second for £2.00.
Food is provided by a selection of local producers, which changes through the week. The bar also houses the Sassoon Art gallery, which is composed of art installations and local artworks.
Kenpai London Sake Brewery & Taproom
- Address: Unit 2A-2, 133 Copeland Rd, SE15 3SN
Husband and wife, Tom and Lucy Wilson, always had an interest in all things Japanese. Their sake homebrewing went from an interest to a way of life, self-taught at first but then schooled by experts in Japan. They now run the first Sake brewery in the UK.
Kanpai translates as ‘cheers’ in English. All the Sake that’s produced comes only from fermented rice. There are no additives, such as sulphites or preservatives, and no added alcohol.
The industrial, outdoor courtyard setting is complete with Japanese murals on the walls. Inside, the brewery takes up the ground floor space with the indoor bar perched above it.
The bar doesn’t take bookings, so guests arrive and find a seat. You can try the Sake by the glass or by the bottle, as well as try a rotating selection of Sake manufactured by international and Japanese companies.
The bar also serves a good selection of traditional cocktails and craft beers. Happy Hour is on Wed and Thurs from 5 PM to 7 PM. Tours of the brewery are also available, as well as introductory lessons in brewing.
For food, Kanpai Kitchen is located on the opposite side of the courtyard, where they serve up Osaka-style street food, such as takoyaki, gyoza and okonomiyaki.
You really are spoilt for choice when deciding which Peckham bar to visit. The emphasis is on fun and value rather than pretence but that’s not to say there is any lack of sophistication, in the drink, food and hospitality.