From exotic Club Tropicana-themed playgrounds to vegan-friendly boozers, we’ve whittled down our pick of the best new bars, cocktail dens and late-night party palaces popping up in London this month, guaranteed to quench your thirst come Friday night…
Near & Far Bar
One thing’s for certain, the folks at Peckham Levels sure are a creative bunch. The latest addition to south London’s popular multisensory-playground comes in the form of a glamorous Club Tropicana-themed den. A tropical paradise where pink neon lights flicker above retro velvet furniture, palm-tree wall prints and sprigs of exotic foliage. No doubt there are a few flamingos hiding amongst the shrubbery too – quite the transformation from what was essentially a concrete carpark. Order quirky cocktails from the central island bar – Emergency Brexit is one of our faves – and bask beneath a sea of glowing pinks. This has trouble written all over it.
Level 6, Peckham Levels, 95A Rye Lane, Peckham, SE15 4ST
Hole up at Drake & Morgan’s latest City hangout for expert cocktails mixed by some of London’s finest mixologists. Signature cocktails come with a winter theme – think Bubbling Buttered Rum, a rich and warming mix of Pampero Aniversario rum, vanilla syrup, ginger, cinnamon and butter, and Whisky & Spice & All Things Nice with Jameson whisky, ginger, lemon juice and honey – with wine flights from across the globe and a selection of craft beers and lagers available on tap and by the bottle. There’s also a year-round terrace with planters, palm prints and botanical-inspired lighting – the perfect antidote to gloomy January.
Cannon Green, 27 Bush Lane, The City, EC4R 0AA
From the group behind the Botanist and Aviary, this elegant cocktail bar comes decked out in the same swish interiors as its sibling venues so expect rich woods, soft leathers, geometric mirrors and splashes of copper and gold. The bar is botany-inspired with fresh foliage hanging from every nook and cranny, whilst the bar serves up botanical cocktails – think Violette Truth with Tanqueray gin, Violette liqueur, prosecco, tonic and egg white; and The Beers Knees – a heady mix of pale ale, Tanqueray gin, lemon and honey water. Shuffleboard and live sporting action are also on offer, plus there’s a crowd-pleasing menu with bottomless brunch and dinner on Saturdays.
25 Old Broad Street, Bishopsgate, EC2N 1HN
The Spread Eagle
Ditching meat and dairy for Veganuary? You’re in luck. London has opened the doors to its first ever fully-vegan pub, serving up a delicious menu of Mexican morsels from taco pundits Club Mexicana. As well as tasty tacos, there will also be Californian-style burritos, loaded cheesy nachos and Mexican Fried Chick’n, along with a selection of vegan-friendly wines, beers and cocktails.
224 Homerton High Street, Hackney, E9 6AS
The Brick Bars
Ok, this hasn’t opened yet, but the concept of a bar made entirely from Lego bricks has certainly got our attention. The Brick Bar is (unsurprisingly) the first of its kind, and will consist of over one million blocks, transported and assembled into the ultimate nostalgia trip. The bar will feature sculptures made completely from building blocks, and there’ll be an abundance of blocks for people to shape into their own whacky creations, with local DJ’s spinning tunes all day.
Bricks Bars is due to open in the spring, but the bar will be ticketed, so to make sure you don’t miss out register your details on their website
Doing exactly what it says on the tin, Prosecco House is London’s first venue dedicated entirely to serving up endless glasses of gorgeous Italian fizz. Housed inside the One Tower Bridge development, anyone partial to a glass or two can work their way through 20 different varieties of the sparkly stuff, all hand-selected from five vineyards in Veneto by the bar's founder – five of which aren’t available anywhere else in London. Glasses will start from £7.50 and will be paired with a menu of cicchetti, cured meats and cheeses.
1 Crown Square, Tower Bridge, SE1 2SE, open from February
Music-lovers can get their fix at Studio 88, Leicester Square’s swanky new piano bar. Each night, guests can request their favourite songs from the ‘human jukebox’ – a live band which play only audience requests. But it doesn’t just end there; cocktail masterclasses will run for the mixologist masterminds, Californian and pan-Atlantic cuisine will be served up in ‘California Cones’, plus there will be a ‘Can’t Sing Choir’ for those who are troubled in the vocal department.
47 Whitcomb Street, Leicester Square, WC2H 7DH