Balham’s on the up. With the Gazette French bistro just moved to a new premise and the pub that was The Clarence being given a refurb, a new wine-tasting shop has opened on Hildreth Street. Previously, Oddbins had been the pinnacle of the wine-tasting experience in Balham but the Wine Tasting Shop is raising both glasses and stakes with a selection of wines to sample every day. The wines are stored below inert gas, while owner Julia Michael is anything but inert – her enthusiasm for the subject bubbles throughout the shop. Be warned that most of the decent bottles start around the £10 mark.