The service is quite casual, sometimes too casual. A few times servers stood on the stairs next to our table shouting questions and instructions to each-other. And there was often a waiter walking around with plates of food and no clue who they were for.
The Exhibit, London: Hours, Address, The Exhibit Reviews: 4/5
Our meal nearly ended up on someone else's table initially. I wouldn't recommend it for a romantic meal for two but definitely for a night out with a group of friends. It's a party, arty place. For my first trip to Balham, I was blown away by this hidden gem. The "youth club for adults" was absolutely enormous consisting of a cinema, restaurant, studio and gallery. In fact, before the meal was over, my friend and I had already signed up for a life drawing class in a couple of weeks time.
When we arrived, the girl struggled a bit to find our table, taking us to three different tables before someone helped her out. He is just a bundle of joy. He was so attentive, gave us some great recommendations and his dance moves were on point. We both ended up ordering the prosecco breakfast which came with toast, perfectly seasoned avocado, tangy tomato salsa, soft chorizo and enormous, delicious prawns.
Kevin suggested a size of halloumi as well which as he said, was the perfect addition. When our meal arrived, Kevin stated "we call it the prosecco brunch because it's great with prosecco. Would you like a glass? Every time it dipped below the halfway line, he was back topping it up.
It was heaven. I cannot wait for the life drawing class and to see what more this venue has to offer. Described as a youth club for adults this definitely is a good description; the venue has a bar serving food from brunch at the weekends and lunch from 12 until the evening, they have a cinema, gallery and event space where they host comedy nights. There is plenty of seating inside and out and upstairs there is a balcony, unfortunately the weather was too inclement to test it out. I went to try the brunch, I aimed for a lunch time slot so the lunch options would be available too.
The staff were friendly and helpful, they could have been a bit more attentive and offered me a substitute for eggs but the food was well presented with plenty of flavour. I opted for prosecco brunch, this was two large prawns with avocado on toast and chorizo minus the fried egg. To go alongside it I opted for more seafood as this is one of my favourite things; fried octopus which came with chorizo and cannellini beans.
The prawns were huge and had plenty of flavour complemented by the chorizo and avocado. The octopus was tender and soft melting into my mouth. My husband chose s moked salmon which came with scrambled egg in a bagel and sweet potato fries on the side.
There was a good amount of salmon filling the bagel with a mix of scrambled egg and the fries were crunchy and soft. Another reason for me to come at lunch time was so I could enjoy a cocktail with my food, I find it much easier to drink this a little later on in the day. I chose the rosie and gin, which came in a tall tumbler glass a good red colour decorated with a piece of rosemary; it was fruity and sweet with a good herby taste of the rosemary.
Ricardo Levins Morales Art Studio and Web Store
I'm sure I'll be back for some more even if it is the other side of London to me. This place has great potential to be a brunch hotspot, with is delightful menu and variety. Sadly the deal we were on was not clearly explained leaving to a bit of disappointment. The alternative dish of Mac and cheese where last very tasty, lacked a crispy top.
The prawns were flavoursome with a very fresh and minty couscous with tabbouleh, not what I ordered but equally tasty.
Locations and Dates
Service was ok but not attentive given that there were only 4 tables. The food was of good quality, the toilets need a bit of attention and service sadly lacking. Having said that Kevin seemed to do a great job with his paying brunch table where the prosecco flowed freely. This is one of my favourite places in London for a good Sunday brunch. I'm a bit of a slow drinker so they've always given me a little extra time because of that as well.
The menu is small but will still have you torn over several dishes and the food is always great- quick to come out, colourful and well cooked. I can personally recommend the sweetcorn fritters! On a sunny day you can sit on the mezzanine balcony, downstairs out front or in their garden and for the more likely rainy day, they have a spacious indoor layout.
Staff are lovely and customer service is above and beyond. My boyfriend lives down the road so we've been here a few times for brunch or a lime and soda. The fact that it's so big and the outdoor and indoor spaces means it's an all day, all year round kind of place. It may sound weird to rave about a lime and soda at a bar, but seriously they make the best lime and soda - it has this homemade lime pulp with a bit of cordial and is the perfect drink on a hot day.
Having visited on a saturday night for birthday drinks, its a great place for a weekend social. The venue has a cool and modern design and the drinks and the food platters that I sampled were really good. The atmosphere is pretty chilled with a good crowd of people. The location is also great as its right by Balham station! The bottomless brunch is a great option for people in south west London who don't always want to trek to Shoreditch for a boozy brunch!
We were told the chef is Italian which I think is a good sign. Our food was delicious and they are very generous with the bubbles. So I have not yet been to The Exhibit to eat or drink, but I felt it was worth a review for the other things they have to offer.
Discovery Cube OC
This is more than just a restaurant my friends. I went to The Exhibit to go to a cinema screening of T2. I always try and find 'different' cinemas to go to rather than your average Odeon as I never really enjoy the experience and after trying The Clapham Picture House a few times I thought I would give this closer to home venue a try.
It does exactly what it says on the tin. We did arrive quite close to starting time so we had to sit right down the front so I would advise getting there early for a middle row seat. However, since all the seats are two seater, really comfortable sofas, it wasn't the usual pain to sit down the front at all- once you arranged yourself it was really comfy. You could purchase drinks at the bar to have inside, and possibly snacks although there is an option when you buy your tickets to have dinner before the movie.
I can find myself at The Exhibit for all different occasions: a quick coffee with a friend, a decent meal with my partner, a night out with friends and a breakfast with a bloody mary to recover! I keep on coming back! We go more for the brunch than the pub, but the food is fantastic. The best chilaquiles I've had outside of NYC! Great for drinks and delicious food!
Really friendly staff too. Private hire spaces and quirky cinema make the Exhibit the place to be in Balham! I find myself a bit conflicted when it comes to The Exhibit. Earlier in the evenings the music is really loud so socialising inside isn't an option unless you're dining. It's kind of fenced itself off as an 'all night' venue and made it a last resort venue when the other places in Balham have kicked you out. Restaurant wise: there are a few cracking dishes on their menu. The burgers pretty much always nail it - big, juicy and satisfying, and I still think very fondly of the Pollock, Langoustine and Potatas Bravas dish I enjoyed a few months ago.
It was succulent and tender, sweet and tangy yet hearty and rich.
If Deliveroo could bring that to my desk right now actually that'd be fab. The duck tacos are also a must-order from the starter section.
A bit of a chinese meets mexican fusion, with jolts of tangy citrus and bold sweetness of hoisin. It hits a few key tastebuds that leave you very happy indeed.
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When it comes to events at The Exhibit, there are plenty to choose from. The 2 hours were spent experimenting with different techniques and approaches to life drawing, drawing on emotions, movement, light and music the soundtrack to the night was incredible!
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