Cahoots Ticket Hall & Control Room, Soho
The team behind 40s-themed Cahoots has opened a second venue just round the corner. Unlike the original, which opened in 2015 and is solely subterranean, the new venue spans two storeys and has been cleverly converted into two distinct spaces. On the ground floor, opening onto Kingly Street, is The Ticket Hall, which will transport guests back to the 40s via period train schedules, a smoke-stained ceiling and a repurposed station kiosk bar, which serves cocktails in tin cans and hosts live entertainment into the small hours. Hidden on the floor below is the old station Control Room. This hideout plays host to live entertainment and experiences such as immersive movie evenings, musical quiz nights, and ‘Cahooch’ cocktail masterclasses. The cocktail menu in the Control Room will be highly experimental, incorporating fermentation, preservation and long-forgotten ration ingredients.
5 Kingly Street, Soho, W1B 5QL
Hawksmoor, Various Locations
Hawksmoor has launched its first new cocktail list in nearly a decade. The list follows Hawksmoor’s second win for ‘Best International Restaurant Bar’ at Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans earlier this year. Twenty-six new, deceptively simple drinks are the result of six months of intensive research, travel and creative sessions from Liam Davy (head of bars), Nick Strangeway (who created the original Spitalfields cocktail list back in 2006) and the full team of Hawksmoor bartenders. Alongside an aesthetic change – a new-look menu and glassware – there is a bigger selection of non-alcoholic drinks and lower overall ABVs, plus a commitment to sustainability. We like the look of the ‘Highballs, Fizzes and Spritz’ section, which features drinks like ‘Ginza Highball’, a carbonated in-house whisky highball that includes a splash of Empirical Spirits’ koji and kombucha-laced Fallen Pony, English verjus and lemon verbena.
Bottles Chelsea, Chelsea
Following on from a successful Old Spitalfields Market launch last year, Bottles has ventured into west London with the opening of a new site on Draycott Avenue. Bringing its signature Italian-inflected style to a new space, Bottles Chelsea focuses on micro-producers and natural and fine wines, alongside a zero-waste food offering. The team continues to offer a concise and approachable menu in a simple format, with sommeliers on hand to make recommendations. A comprehensive selection of fine wines will be stored in the cellar with a focus on the best Italy has to offer. The bright venue also includes a glass-fronted wine bar with a bespoke timber wine wall where you can buy your favourite wines to take away.
100 Draycott Avenue, Chelsea, SW3 3AD
Charles Merser & Co, Temple
Once a booming trade in the streets of 17th-century London, rum blending houses have been non-existent in the capital for over 100 years. Enter Charles Merser & Co. London’s only operating rum blending house blends, marries and bottles a range of Caribbean rums. Set over four floors of a period townhouse, the blending house will take visitors on a journey of London’s merchant history, offering rum tastings and cocktails along the way. Guests will be immersed in the traditions of the past on an interactive tour of the townhouse, which has been fully restored and set up to make rums the same way they were made in London a century ago. In the ground-floor reception room and lounge, visitors are greeted with rum punch. Upstairs in the tasting and blending rooms, they can enjoy signature cocktails and a tasting of Merser & Co’s first blend, ‘Double Barrel’.
44 Essex Street, Temple, WC2R 3JF
Taproom By Brixton Village, Brixton
Taproom by Brixton Village is the latest addition to the market’s ever-evolving food and drink scene. Following the same ethos as its original site in Bethnal Green, the new Taproom champions locally sourced products, working closely with brewers and suppliers from within the Brixton community. The menu centres around experimental brews and new concepts, as well as beers from well-loved breweries such as Brixton Brewery, Gypsy Hill, the Kernel and Orbit. Changing with the seasons, the opening line-up includes Brixton Atlantic, Canopy Brockwell IPA, Orbit Nico Koln Lager, Brick Peckham Pils and Kernel Summit Mandarina Bavaria, plus non-alcoholic options. Beer tasting flights will showcase four exciting serves. Away from beer, there’s a range of draught classic cocktails, including Aperol Spritz, and a selection of refined bar snacks will be on hand.
43-44 Brixton Village, Brixton, SW9 8PR
A neighbourhood bar has opened in Kensington this month. The party-ready venue promises an unpretentious and playful atmosphere with two bars, a restaurant and a secret dancefloor. Kicking off from 5pm until late, Bloom will serve a great selection of cocktails from its two bars, which are fitted out with geometric graphic tiles, botanical accents, vibrant neons and cosy velvet booths. At 10pm every night, tables will be cleared as the dancefloor, additional tables and a DJ are unveiled from behind sliding doors. Food is available from open until close, with sharers, bar snacks and classic comfort food all on offer.
2 Kensington High Street, Kensington, W8 4PT