Five must-visit London cocktail bars

It’s Friday! Wohoo! That brilliant time of week when in a few hours we can say goodbye to the office and hello to the weekend. If I could have it my way I’d be sipping cocktails by 6pm each week, but sadly the bank account dictates and instead I have a growing list of London cocktail bars I’m eager to check out. Here are just five favourites which I feel must be visited soon and may just help you start the weekend in style!

The Zetter Townhouse

Image credit: Jefferson Smith/thezettertownhouse.com

The Zetter Townhouse took British eccentricity and went with it, the result is a pretty sophisticated yet quirky looking place to enjoy a well-mixed cocktail.  Take a look a the cocktail menu and you’ll find some appropriately British ingredients like Beefeater Gin, Somerset cider brandy and erm dandelion tincture, all at a reasonable London price of £8.50/9.50.   I have my eye on the The Flintlock – a drink with gin and gunpowder tea tincture has got to be pretty interesting and dare I say it – explosive (sorry couldn’t help myself).  If you’re looking for something sophisticated but different, this has got to be for you (it’s definitely one high up on my list).   You’ll find it in Clerkenwell.

69 Colebrooke Row

Image credit: agreatlittleplace.com

A speakeasy favourite amongst the best makers and shakers, 69 Colebrooke Row looks like the place to slip into after a long day in the office.  It’s actually ran by the same people (or man – Tony Conigliaro) as The Zetter Townhouse so it’s no surprise that when you delve into the cocktail menu, you find something a bit quirky.  Ever heard of Pollen liqueur? Me neither! According to A Great Little Place this bar’s drinks are ‘molecular gastronomy boozing’.  Not for the faint hearted perhaps but well worth the experiment I reckon!

The Major of Scaredy Cat Town

Image credit:  restaurantandbardesignawards.com

I’m a sucker for gimmics and hidden speakeasy bars so the fact that you have to step through this Smeg fridge to find this hidden drinking den has me sold.  Tried and tested by a friend who said that thanks to the delicious cocktails the most memorable part of the place was in fact the smeg fridge, which was how I managed to track down its name! Traditional to speakeasy bars I struggled to track down a cocktail menu but from the review by the cocktail lovers I know I’ll like what I find there.  Visit the website, book your table, head to The Breakfast Club – Spitalfields and look out for the Smeg fridge!

Trailer Happiness

Image credit:  havana-cocteles.com

Trailer Happiness is one for a relaxed evening on Portobello Road, seeing the weekend in with rum cocktails.  I stumbled upon it thanks to an email from the D&D restaurant on Best rum bars, where we’re told to ‘Expect cocktails in coconuts and an atmosphere its website terms “the e-z-boy feel of a low rent, mid-60s California valley bachelor pad’.  Sounds like a great place to me! Sadly there isn’t a menu to browse but for me it’s simple, I like rum cocktails, drinks in coconuts and places recommended by experienced bar owners.

Bar 45 at 45 Park Lane

Image credit:  cntraveller.com

Bar 45 looks like the kind of bar you’d find James Bond drinking his martinis.  Part of a luxurious hotel on London’s most opulent lane, it’s the place you go to for a celebration, dressed up to the nines in your favourite and finest outfit.  The cocktail menu is mouth-wateringly good so I imagine whatever price they charge will be worth it for the fine ingredients I would expect from an impressive hotel.  I’ll be going for the ‘Peace on Earth’.

Have you tried any of these cocktail bars? What did you think? Which cocktail bars are on your must-visit list?