Oh London town, how I love thee. Your winding streets, your ominous skies, your beautiful buildings with their toes in the past and their arms in the future…. I love you. I love you and for as many times as I will travel to your shores and trudge through your streets, you will be new to me forever.
Having been travelling to London since I was a young girl, with roots in its Scottish neighbour, I always feel a strange familiarity when I arrive. That familiarity somehow inevitably gets checked as I explore and find that so much has changed in the year (or months) since my last visit. I travelled to London a few weeks back on business, and with the tiny amount of free time I had, I visited a few new spots and a few old haunts.
Here are some of my faves:
I may have mentioned this spot before, but I can’t help it, because it’s always spot on. If you like a great cocktail and a story behind it, this is your place. It has been voted World’s Best Bar 4 times and once you experience it you instantly understand why. The first time I went I was in awe of the innovative way they prepared drinks: in balloons, coconuts, tiki cups. This time I went, expecting the same but was happily surprised that they’ve moved on to a whole new concept: Artesian Moments, an interpretation of life’s most important milestones.
After interviewing 700 people they came up with a menu, (presented beautifully in a booklet), that takes you through time, nodding to important milestones in one’s life. You Took Your First Steps is reminiscent of that banana strawberry medicine that we all remember hating and loving as a child. You Turned 18 is made with tequila, a splash of pilsner and some smoky salt; a somehow pleasant reminder of your first hangover.
I sat at the bar and got to discuss the menu, cocktails and my general fascination with ice with the mixologists and it was a night I will never forget. Thanks guys!!
Enter this storied hotel, dip around the large deep wood staircase and head into the warm arms of The Connaught Bar. Snag a cozy corner seat and snuggle up for some creative takes on the traditional cocktails we all love. I fell for their take on a Bloody Mary. Served in a coupe chilled with a sizeable layer of celery scented foam, it will be hard to go back to the original….
Don’t forget to try out the bar snack menu – it doesn’t disappoint.
Though locals may scoff at this over-the-top Mayfair spot, I love it just the same. If you’re looking for a lively night any day of the week, this is your spot. If you’re not wowed by the party vibe, please just be there to marvel at the fun design. Not many restaurants can boast having 19 Frank Gehry fish lamps – worth the visit just for these IMO. Plus the sushi is legit.
Located in the impressive Rosewood Hotel, this is another cozy spot, that once you’ve found your spot, you’re never going to want to leave. Trust me, it happened to us twice on this last trip… Named after famed artist Gerald Scarfe, the cocktails and service are top notch and the historic building it all sits in, is definitely worth a peek.
Let us know if you get the chance to visit any of these spots!