Tis the season to be jolly (fa la la la la …). This means eat lots, drink plenty and be merry is the month’s motto, a great excuse to try as many places as you can fit into the schedule before the year is out. Although it’s probably the busiest time of year in London, if you’re savvy enough to reserve a table or make an enquiry before turning up, you can still enjoy something new and exciting. In between Christmas parties and last-minute shopping I’m hoping to squeeze in a few cocktails and dinner with friends, here’s what’s on my radar right now…
The Rum Kitchen, Carnaby – After my visit to their Notting Hill branch earlier in the year I was excited to discover a new branch opening in the heart of Soho on 9 December. I’m definitely going to be reserving a table for a tasty Caribbean dinner there soon.
Earlham Street Clubhouse, Covent Garden – A good American-themed bar with a great menu is definitely a destination I’m putting on my list. As a child of the 80s, I love this new opening’s 80s/90s inspired food and cocktail menu.
Strip Bar & Steak, Barbican – A new opening for Malmaison’s London hotel which looks like the kind of place for a little pre-christmas meat treat.
Boopshi’s, Soho – You can’t deny this is a brilliant original name for a restaurant, and with schnitzel and spritz on the menu it has an original menu too. Set up by Ed and Ben Robson, who have based the concept on recipes handed down to them by their Austrian grandparents, I reckon it’ll be a great place to try an authentic Austrian meal.
The Talented Mr Fox – As the latest cocktail bar from the people behind Purl you can expect a fairly experimental menu. I like to step out of my comfort zone with cocktails every now and again so I definitely need to check this one out.
Milk & Honey – A cocktail bar which has been serving up some of the best cocktails for over 10 years. Largely known as a members-only club, non-members can actually pop in by reservation until 11pm. It’s one place I am determined to tick off the list.
Seven, Brixton Market – I’ve heard lots of great things about this small cocktail bar in Brixton Market. As I haven’t been down there for a good few weeks now I think I need to make this my excuse for a return visit.
Ape & Bird – The first pub opening by Russell Norman (the man behind Polpo, Spuntino, Mishkins), with four bars over three floors there’s plenty of choice to grab a much-deserved drink to celebrate making it to the end of the year.
Evans and Peel – A speakeasy bar recommended to me a long time ago, it recently came back on to my radar whilst I was researching a new cocktail bar to check out.
Tate Britain – One of London’s renowned art galleries recently opened a newly refurbished building offering a chronological walk through 500 years of British Art. With a location next to the Thames I reckon it would make part of a pretty nice walk along the river.
North London Vintage Christmas market, 7 December 2013 – A market where you’re likely to find gifts with a difference and vintage Christmas decorations.
Christmas Pop Up Screens, 13 – 20 December 2013 – Pop Up Screens are back for Christmas with a series of some of my favourite Christmas films. This time they’re showing them indoors at Notting Hill’s 20th Century theatre.
Hawker House night market, Fri & Sat, now – 14 December 2013 – Street Feast are back with a winter evening street food market. As ever you can expect some of the finest street food in the city, alongside hot drinks to keep you warm outdoors.
Fish Market’s funfair terrace, now – 24 December 2013 – a winter terrace in the heart of the City offering hot spiced cider, alcoholic snow cones, and a menu of funfair dishes including Three Seas cod burger, popcorn shrimp, corn on the cob, gingerbread goldfish and toffee apple fondue.
Handmade Christmas at The O2, 13-15 December 2013 – With 100’s of the best Contemporary Crafters, designers and Artisan food producers you should be able to find some original Christmas presents before it’s too late.
What’s on your radar this month? Will you be trying any new places before 2013 is over?