Wish You Were Beer
With pubs, bars and restaurants finally opening their doors, we thought we’d share with you some of our favourite London watering holes. Cheers!
The Standard (double standard and lounge bar) - Kings Cross
Housed in the former Camden Town Hall Annex in London’s thriving King’s Cross neighbourhood, the 1974 Brutalist building has been meticulously restored and sets the perfect stage for The Standard’s first hotel outside America. The hangout includes a bar with its ‘TFL-inspired’ interior and a lounge area transformed into a cosy mid-century style library – a nod to its previous life as Camden Council Library.
The food and drink offer pays homage to the company’s American roots with Brooklyn beers on tap, hot dog sliders, fried chicken and juicy burgers.
Sun Tavern - Bethnal Green
In the old days, The Sun Tavern used to be a popular hangout with Bethnal Green’s boxing crowd, including a certain notorious pair of villainous twins.
An unassuming East End boozer to the untrained eye, behind these doors you’ll discover this no-frills pub actually serves some of the best cocktails in London. Local beers are served in what seem like giant steins and this, along with the fact there’s always a great daily deal on, means you’ll normally feel like staying for one more round.
The pub is part of The Umbrella Project, who are also responsible for Discount Suit Company, which can be found down the road in a suit tailor’s store room and a fiery, boozy ginger beer that you can also find behind both their bars…there’s often live music on and at the weekends it feels like all of Bethnal Green’s finest and their dogs pile in to perch at the bar, or crowd round tables to enjoy live music, decent bar snacks and a bloody good time.
Wigmore - Fitzrovia
The latest addition within The Langham Hotel and with food created by Michel Roux Jnr – this feels like the poshest ‘proper pub’ in the world but feels warm and homely enough to not be pretentious. With arsenic green walls, rich polished wood, brass fixtures and a pub quiz every Monday, this place is the dream. If you’re so inclined, taste their house ‘saison’ created with Yonder Brewing, which is light and fresh in style and also works great as a cocktail ingredient. The XXL Cheese toastie is also something else. Reassuring on a cold London afternoon.
Culpeper - Spitalfields
The Culpeper is an old boozer that has been polished but thankfully not sanitised.
Yes, plants artfully trail down from the ceilings, the large central bar has a decidedly modern metal top and you’ll find whisky sours on offer alongside your classic pints, but this pub with guest rooms has retained a soul through championing the bare bones of the building. The parquet flooring looks as though it has seen many great nights, while the grand, black balustraded staircase at the back looks over proceedings and leads up to more floors of fun.
With sustainability at the core of the business, the jewel in the Culpeper’s crown is its rooftop garden where an abundance of produce is grown to supply the restaurant kitchen and garnish the cocktails.
The Gibson - Old Street
With the help of the classic pickled cocktail, the Gibson, and a dazzling supporting cast of over 40 highly inventive cocktails, The Gibson's menu is built around a magical calendar that transports you to different seasons in different eras.
Boasting one of the smallest and most intimate spaces in East London, every inch of the space has been utilised, even to the bar where many of the drinks are prepped below it. With shimmering interiors that have been designed to make you feel like you are stepping through a portal into a futuristic Edwardian world and stunningly original drinks, leave your inhibitions at the door and enter the unknown.