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Great London Bars – American Bar at the Savoy
Strand ,London ,WC2R 0EU
The American Bar has long been one of London’s prestigious meeting spots, and is one of the most iconic cocktail bars in the world.
The term “American Bar” was a term given to a bar serving mixed or “American” style drinks, i.e. cocktails. There were many American Bars in London in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
However there were few American Bars as famous as the Savoy, this is a bar that has served drinks to the rich and the famous for over a hundred years and responsible for the creation of many classic cocktails which were published in the legendary Savoy Cocktail book which was created here over 80 years ago, and was regarded as the bartender’s bible.
This is the oldest surviving cocktail bar in England. It opened in 1893 in the original riverside part of the hotel, and moved to this spot in 1904.
The Bar’s history is celebrated in a number of classic cocktails created by bartenders at the Savoy:
ADA COLEMAN Hanky Panky this rich Martini-style drink is a sophisticated blend of Bombay Sapphire Gin, Martini Rosso vermouth and Fernet Branca.
HARRY CRADDOCK White Lady 15.00 One of many cocktails that became famous at The Savoy, and a symbol of the modern day renaissance of both gin and classic cocktails. Bombay Sapphire gin, dry orange liqueur, fresh lemon juice, and a dash of egg white are shaken together and served straight up. Clean, sharp and bright.
EDDIE CLARK Eight Bells This cocktail has been specifically created for the Royal Navy. Bacardi Superior is shaken with Angostura bitters, homemade Van Der Hum liqueur and fresh orange juice.
REGINALD “JOHNNIE” JOHNSON Wedding Bells Woodford Reserve Bourbon as the primary base, and stirred with dry orange liqueur, Italian aromatized wine and orange bitters.
JOE GILMORE Moonwalk the Moonwalk cocktail is also one of the most famous drinks in the history of drink making at The Savoy. A rich champagne cocktail at heart, Grand Marnier is stirred with orange flower water, grapefruit bitters and champagne and served in a champagne flute with a sugar cube.
HARRY VICCARS Speedbird mixes Bacardi Superior with Martini dry and Martini Rosso, Angostura bitters and orange liqueur.
ERIK LORINCZ Green Park A savory and contemporary mix of Bombay Sapphire gin, celery bitters, fresh basil, lemon juice, sugar syrup and egg white.
Erik Lorincz, the current Head Bartender is the winner of many awards as indeed the bar has done over the past few years.
The Bar also has an enviable list of Wines and Spirits
Another feature of the bar is a live pianist seven days a week, playing American Jazz.
Hours of Operation
Monday – Saturday: 11:30 a.m. – 12:00 a.m.
Sundays: 12:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m.
Smart Casual, No Sportswear
For more information visit the Savoy website here
Great London Bars – Zetters Townhouse
A million miles away from the sophisticated Cocktail bars in the big hotels and the roaring twenties vibe of London’s speakeasies is The Cocktail Lounge at the Zetter Townhouse which is an exciting collaboration between The Zetter, chef Bruno Loubet and Tony Conigliaro.
The Cocktail bar has been created as if you are visiting a wealthy eccentric Aunt who just happens to have a bartender fixing your favourite drinks, there are comfortble chairs and even an open fire. The establishment have even given the Aunt a name calling her Wilhelmina.
If you think it is overly dramatic, that is the intention with the decor there to create a great ambience for eating and drinking.
However for all the homely touches to the cocktail bar, it is the award winning cocktails by Tony Conigliaro that have made the bar’s reputation.
THE MASTER AT ARMS Myers rum, port evaporation with homemade grenadine
KÖLN MARTINI Beefeater gin & dry Martini with a hint of homemade citrus aromatics
DRIE VAN DRIE Seaweed infused whisky, salted-liquorice bitters, sherry
LORD HINCHINBROKE’S FIZZ Birch Liqueur, Antica Formula & Perrier Jouet Champagne
THE FLINTLOCK Beefeater 24 gin, gunpowder tea tincture, sugar, dandelion
PHEASANT ISLAND SOUR Martell Cognac, Poire Williams, Lepanto PX brandy, lemon juice & sugar
THE CONSTANTINOPLE Raki, Kümmel & Sesame vermouth
MILK COLLINS Beefeater gin, homemade milk syrup, lemon juice, sugar & soda
THE IVY Ivy aromatics & Perrier Jouet Champagne
Award winning chef Bruno Loubet has created a menu that compliments Tony’s cocktails with a number of small dishes that suggest a small supper meal rather than a full blown dinner.
Opening Hours: Sunday – Weds 7am – Midnight Thurs – Sat 7am – 1am
For more information visit the Zetter Townhouse website here
Great London Bars – Nightjar
129 City Road, London, EC1V 1JB
Nightjar has taken the latest craze in London for speakeasy bars and taken it to the next level .
The cocktail list, divided into historical eras (Pre-Prohibition, Prohibition, Post-War and Nightjar signatures) is the source of plenty of innovation using intriguing combinations.
For example Nightjar Signature Cocktails include:
NAME OF THE SAMURAI
Nikka Whisky from the Barrel, Umeshu, Akashi Tai Sake, Popcorn tea, LIem, Rice & Mirin Syrup, Smoked Sakura
Excellia Reposado Tequila, Aged Umeshu, Longan Jasmine Tea, Peach Jam, Sparkling Sake
Belvedere Vodka, St Germain, Grilled Korean Pear, Kafir Lime Leaf & Lemongrass Infusion, Lemon, White Beer
There is also a wide range of Vintage Spirits including the extremely rare Hannisville Bourbon believed to have been distilled in the 1860s.
There is a wide variety of Punch for sharing, one of the UK’s largest collection of French and Swiss Absinthes and a selection of Tapas, Meats and Cheeses amongst other food options.
What really marks Nightjar above the crowd is their top quality music from Bands and Singers who take you back to Prohibition times.
Extremely popular even on weekdays , booking is advised .
For more information visit the Nightjar website here
Great London Bars – Artesian
1C Portland Place, London, W1B 1JA
Artesian has been voted the World’s Best Bar two years running , located in the Langham Hotel it has an enviable reputation for Artesian its collection of rums, extensive Champagne list, alongside an inventive menu of cocktails.
Equally it renown for the excellent service by its extremely knowledgeable staff.
Amongst the Artesian Cocktail Classics are
Chelsea Flower Show Cocktail (Fino Sherry | La Quintinye Blanc | Pine Liqueur | Cedarwood syrup | bitters )
Classic Champagne Cocktail (Rémy Martin VSOP | bitters | sugar | Laurent Perrier NV Brut)
Last Word (Sipsmith Gin | Maraschino | Green Chartreuse | lime )
Vieux Carre (Pikesville Rye | Cocchi Vermouth | Rémy Martin VSOP | bitters | Benedictine )
Morning Glory Fizz (Johnnie Walker Black | lime | lemon | absinthe | sugar syrup | egg white )
20th Century Cocktail (Bombay Sapphire | Lillet | Crème de Cacao | lemon )
Food is available and provide a more interesting type of bar snack including Platters for two
Hallam (Beef tea, sashimi, urmaki, duck hoi sin, roasted rice cakes and spicy pork )
Bond (Chicken tea, prawn, pork and chicken dim sum with spicy lemon dressing, sweet chilli sauce, light soy and oyster ketchup, bbq pork steamed buns)
Burlington (Tomato tea, kibeh, fatayer, khobez, falafel, moutabel, spicy houmous, pitta and flat bread )
You can also opt for Dim Sum, Caviar and Oysters as well as more usual offerings.
Monday – Saturday 11am – 2am
Sunday 11am – 12am
From 11am till noon on Sundays, alcohol can only be served to hotel residents.
Please note that the dress code is smart casual and once day turns to night, at 7pm each evening, shorts are not allowed.
Children are welcome until 6pm daily.
For more information , visit the Artesian Website here