Our London Cocktail Week Top Picks
As summer is now officially over, what better way to banish those holiday blues than with London Cocktail Week? The full week celebrating of mixology and magnificent beverages throughout the capital, providing great drinks at great prices in great venues. It has everything you could possibly want, all discounted with the LCW Pass, which is now an app rather than a wristband. But, with so many venues to go to, drinks to sample and events to swing by, we thought we should give you a quick rundown of what we think will be the picks of the week:
First things first the Cocktail Village at Spitalfields
A change this year as you have to pay and book a ticket in advance. Whilst we aren’t sure yet if this is going to be providing true value for money, if it is like prior years, you can’t do a London Cocktail Week without it. Drinks and bars to be found there include the likes of Tia Maira, Southern Comfort, Portobello Road Gin, Monkey Shoulder, Jägermeister, Monkey 47, Grand Marnier, Cointreau and many more. So many £6 cocktails (yes, that is also more than last year), that you’ll never need to move from the spot all night. Whilst a lot of what is there is under wraps until the event kicks off, we know that Grand Marnier plan to have a rather fancy stand serving Grand Sidecars and a Grand Tonics.
JägerMusic artist and chef, Dale Evans has teamed up with the drinks brand to create a drinks inspired brunch. Good food, good drinks and good vibes to be had here. If this is like last year’s, then you will be stuffed and staggering away at the end of it! If the brunch isn’t for you, then there’s always their stand at the village which as things going on all week.
Schweppes Alchemy Bar
As the name would suggest, Schweppes have a whole magic & science mixology bar going on throughout London Cocktail Week. Here you can sample some delicious looking cocktails from some historic and modern day alchemists including experiential experts Smith & Sinclair and mixologist mastermind and Drinks Expert for Schweppes, Tony Conigliaro. It is well hidden and you need to book in advance here.
Cafe Courvoisier Classes
Courvoisier have a few classes during the day time, so if you are fancy free and in search of something interesting and alcohol based, we recommend checking out their master classes. From the 3rd to the 5th you could learn about the history of rum and cognac cocktails, as well as a class specifically matching coffee and cognac. Definitely an afternoon adventure that will make a nice diversion from the dreary workday.
John Dewar & Son’s Scotch Egg Club
Last year in the Cocktail Village, the most uproarious fun was to be had at the Scotch Egg Club’s booth, and this year it should be no different, even if they have moved into TT’s Liquor. John Dewar & Son are partnered with them to bring a night of fun, games and whiskey cocktail options, not to mention the scotch eggs to go with them. This could very well end up being our top pick of the week outside the LCW Village.
Woodfood Reserve Partnerships
The guys being Woodford Reserve are not to be missed this London Cocktail Week, and they are spreading themselves a bit thinner to give you a chance to catch them. At each bar they are partnering up with some envelope pushing, distinctive bars and bartenders. Whilst they have a solid week’s residency at Scout with Operation Dagger, they are also popping up on Monday at Satan’s Whiskers with Tales & Spirits and on Tuesday at Three Sheets with Employees Only. Do one. Do two. Do them all.
The Official Opening at Oriole
The first night, the first bar, the first proper party? Oriole have a limited number of spaces available to kick off the week’s festivities, which includes a free cocktail on arrival, a quiz, great music and prizes to be won. Oh, and a bit of burlesque too! It certainly gives us something to look forward to on a Monday night and helps alleviate that Sunday creeping dread.
Into the Wild Dinners with The Botanist and Saver + Wilde
Working in collaboration with Sager + Wilde restaurant in Paradise Row, The Botanist Gin, the first and only Islay gin, is bringing the Hebridean island to London for one week only. This means you can get your hands. Head Chef Chris Leach and Mixologist, Marcis Dzelzainis have created a three course menu inspired by foraging and exploration with wild, seasonal ingredients. Each course will be paired with six specially designed, foraged The Botanist cocktails, available over four evenings in the private upstairs area at Sager + Wilde. If not that, there’s a bar in the courtyard where you can grab a LCW special cocktail throughout the week. Definitely worth a shout if you fancy something a little different.
T in the Rock
Taking your Tuesday evening to a new level with Talisker Whiskey and Cocoa Runners artisanal chocolate. Get yourself some indulgent chocolates that are perfectly paired with a set of tasty Talisker whiskies. Its £15, its 4 whiskies, 4 chocolates and 1 bonus cocktail. What is not to enjoy?
Heaven Hill’s Bourbon Kentucky Carnival
Head upstairs at The Commercial Tavern any time Monday to Saturday from noon to 11pm and choose from the whizz-bang carnival Room cocktails or relax in the Elijah Craig lounge and peruse the Old Fashioned menu. There will also be carnival games with prizes to be won daily plus the Boilermaker ‘Wheel of Fortune’. On the Thursday, Friday and Saturday there are also £10 masterclasses hosted by The Whiskey Professor, walking you through his Evolution of Bourbon.
Tequila & Mezcal Fest
If you are a lover of all things Mexican, then perhaps the tequila and mescal festival taking place at the Truman Brewery on the weekend is the stop for you. Quite separate to LCW, you can buy a £20 ticket, and get access to over 50 of the world’s biggest and best agave spirits. Fully endorsed by the Mexican Embassy, it is a festival not to be missed, as it features classes, talks, a chance to meet some master distillers in the country for the first time, oh and sample some of the city’s best tacos.
If you are looking for a bar taking part nearby, have a look in the LCW app, or check out the site here.