London’s New Cocktail Bars

When it comes to cocktail bars it’s easy to stick to trusted favourites, but why not try something new this autumn with one of London’s hottest openings:

Teatulia, Covent Garden

Image Credit: Louise Long

Tea-shop meets cocktail bar meets literary salon at this hip new opening on Neal Street. By day their house teas include Bengal Builder’s, Green, Jasmine, Oolong, Ginger and Lemongrass with every leaf hand-picked in the Teatulia garden in northern Bangladesh. By night these are married with spirits to create sophisticated cocktails. Choose from the menu created by Enrico Gonzato, the name behind Dandelyan at the Mondrian named ‘World’s Best Bar’, 2017. Cocktails include the Builder’s Bourbon with Black Tea, Blackberries, Sugar, Fresh Mint, Bourbon, and the Lemongrass Mojito with Lemongrass Tea, Fresh Mint, Fresh Lime, Rum, Light Brown Sugar and Club Soda, both £10. Best of all is ‘The Living Bookshelf’ – the first of which is curated by Tilda Swinton. Each month a notable writer, actor, musician or filmmaker will take over the selection, adding their favourite titles and there will also be a program of literary events, more details to be announced soon. 36 Neal Street, WC2H 9PS, Mon – Sat 10am – 10pm, Sun 10am – 7pmteatuliabar.com

(NB. Soft launch 1 – 14 October 2018 tea-only, full opening including cocktails 15 October 2018)

The Coral Room, Bloomsbury

Living up to its name, this art-directed coral cocktail bar is lifted straight from a Wes Anderson set. Luke Edward Hall artworks adorn the walls, Murano glass chandeliers drip from the ceiling and scalloped sofas cluster around low tables. The place to sit is at the almighty bar, where you can watch your drink being mixed. There’s an extensive menu with classics like espresso martinis and margaritas alongside a longer list of house cocktails all with inviting names like Midtown Swizzle and Green Fingers. But really, it’s the place to try English sparkling wine – there are varieties from six vineyards in Surrey, Oxfordshire, Kent, Hampshire, East Sussex and Dorset available by the glass. 16-22 Great Russell St, WC1B 3NN, 10am – midnight Sun – Thurs, 10am – 1am Fri – Sat, thecoralroom.co.uk

Mr Fogg’s Society of Exploration, The Strand 

This September a new Mr Foggs’ arrived in The Strand, the fifth in the string of madcap Around the World in 80 Days’ themed cocktail bars.  Always great fun; this latest opening is no different. Sip a cocktail in a train carriage – a life-sized model of the Victorian Orient Express, try a ‘spirit safari’ in the Map Room or relax into a leather armchair amongst travel books, encyclopaedias and spinning globes. The Society of Exploration offers much more than just a cocktail. Book ahead. 1a Bedford Street, WC2E 9HH, Monday – Wednesday 5pm – midnight, Thursday – Saturday 4pm – midnight, closed on Sunday’s  mr-foggs.com

Harry’s Bar, Marylebone

Just a stone’s throw from St Christopher’s Place and Selfridges, the new Harry’s Bar opened just this week. Unlike it’s Mayfair counterpart, it’s not a members’ club so anyone can enjoy the Dolce Vita experience – although we would say that feel is more restaurant than cocktail bar, albeit a good one with a classic Italian menu from Diego Cardoso (previously at Michelin-starred Murano). Cocktails include the Rialto Spritz, Amalfi Royale and of course the classic Bellini – supposedly invented at the original Harry’s Bar, Venice. 32 -34 James Street, Marylebone, W1U 1ER, Monday – Friday 8am – midnight, weekend’s 9am – midnight. harrys-bar.co.uk

Fitz’s, Bloomsbury

Cosy yet glamorous, Fitz’s is the sort of hotel bar well worth visiting in its own right. Nestled within Bloomsbury’s hip Principle Hotel that opened this spring find dark leather, rich fabrics and proper, grown up drinks. This September they launched a new series of cocktail masterclasses – book in to a themed evening on anything from drinks from the pre-prohibition to creating the perfect martini. Gather 4-12 friends and book now for a Christmas outing. Corner of Guilford Street and Russell Square, WC1B 5BE fitzs.co.uk

Pergola, Olympia

Young, noisy and buzzing, this is not the place for an intimate night cap. Much like it’s predecessors, Pergola Olympia boasts rooftop views across London, street food (this time Patty + Bun burgers, Claw crab rolls and Passo pizzas) and flowing cocktails. The difference about this new site is that it’s winter-friendly being glass-covered and heated, unlike many of London’s beloved roof-top bars. It’s whopping too – with space for 500. Level Five Rooftop, Olympia Car Park, Kensington, W14 8UX, Wednesday – Thursday 5pm – 11pm, Friday – Saturday 12pm – 11.30pm and Sunday 12pm – 10pm.  pergolalondon.com

The Parrot, Covent Garden

Everyone is waiting on the arrival of Idris Elba’s cocktail bar that is set to open any day. Co-founded with actors and twin brothers Lee and Nicky Caulfield, the intimate 60-seater at the Waldorf Hilton in Covent Garden will host live music nights as well as serving cocktails and small plates with a tropical theme. The hotly anticipated opening will no doubt be popular so reserve your table now by emailing reservations@theparrotldn.co.uk. You can even book the bar’s private chauffeur driven car to pick you up. theparrotldn.co.uk

— Daisy Allsup
11th October 2018