My Life in Drinks: London Weekender

Drinks are most delicious during a sweet moment in time, so I knew a city break with my hubby would include many a delectable drinking occasion. From a green juice on the way down to a chai tea on the way home, I chose drinks that reflected what I was feeling or what I needed! Here’s a collection of drinks that tell the tale of our awesome weekend…

With our luggage dropped off, we walked from our hotel to Borough Market and bagged a spot at the bar at Flor. Small plates and a glass of fruity Italian fizz – celebrating our arrival in the capital, of course. Getting lost in the incredible food (the butter was the best butter I’ve ever had, hands down) meant we were running late for our theatre booking, but we couldn’t resist a final stop at the market for cannoli and a cortado to go. We rushed to the Globe theatre and enjoyed an amazing performance of Twelfth Night; I wasn’t sure it was going to be my cup of tea, but it was fantastic!

Here’s where it gets fancy… just around the corner is a bar I’ve had my eye on for a while; Lya-ness. With experimentation key to their success and their drinks menu based around seven of their own innovative ingredients, I wanted to try something ‘out there’. Enter this punchy little number, a Carrot Michelada – brightly coloured with cocoa nibs cascading down the glass, strong and intense with Hendrick’s, Vegan Honey, carrot cordial, green peppercorn and IPA.

Dan chose a Continental Sour; Toki whisky, Golden Levain (a syrup made to evoke the unifying flavour of yeast across Champagne, bread, pastry and beer for a golden, toasty flavour), cantalope oleo, white coconut, grapefruit and rhubarb. I mean, where did they start coming up with that one! After a sip of one anothers drinks, we decided to swap and I fell in love with this tall, milky, frothy, light and interesting drink. Move over basil martini, the Continental Sour is officially my new favourite cocktail. Shame I have no effing clue how to replicate it, but perhaps that is part of the allure.

We had a reservation at The Clove Club for dinner and it was down-right delish. While Dan enjoyed a classic martini poured from a freakin cute little cube glass, I sipped on the wonderfully-named Break Point, a slightly sparkling highball with strawberry gin, cream-washed gin, vanilla and peppercorns.

Double brekkie time… a morning of Dishoom naan and chai tea goodness followed by an indulgent Harrods coffee and cake break!

My favourite drink of all time is a tough act to follow, and our next bar absolutely smashed it. Welcome to Tayer+Elementary, one of the hotspots I had on my London bucket list for their amazing reputation and totally inspiring ideas and unique dual-concept venue. The bar as you walk in serves cocktails on tap, so you get all the beauty of a well-mixed drink with none of the waiting around! This place has had a tough start in life, being named the world’s best bar on the day the country went into lockdown. I cannot sing its praises enough; amazing service by a world-renowned team, incredible drinks, outrageously good food, relaxed but fancy, and not too expensive.

I enjoyed a Jasmine Mai Thai; I’m not usually a rum gal but there were two different types in my glass, along with orange curacao, jasmine verte liqueur and a touch of almond and citrus. Totally delicious, but the highlight of our visit was the ‘one sip martini’. What a completely brilliant idea. A short-serve classic martini with a blue cheese olive inside, the perfect stiff drink to see us on our merry way to the next bar.

Beers at Mikkeller, then beers and meat at Smokestak. Inspired.

As we did at Lya-ness, Dan and I often share drinks or even swap once we’ve decided who won at ordering. On this occasion at London Cocktail Co. just off Brick Lane, there’s no way I was swapping, despite Dan accidentally ordering the most girlie cocktail I’ve ever seen – served in a precious little cupcake cup! This place was great, and all cocktails on or off menu were £9.50, straight up. Despite being between-courses on one of our legendary ‘Roaming Dinners’, my drink was basically a dessert, made of Glenmorangie 10 year, sherry, acorn & chestnut gelato, milk and nutmeg! Dan’s was a Victoria Sponge Bellini… how very hen do of him. We went on for a fantastic dinner at Brat but by that time I was obviously far too tipsy for taking photos of drinks.

The final evening of our weekend away was to celebrate the engagement of our friends Liam and Ellie! They arranged a super lovely shindig in the park and recommended we head to Clapton Craft for some picnic bevvies. A few shots and a few halfies during the rugby followed, with even more beers at Truman’s Social Club.

If you’ve got this far I’d like to take this opportunity to give a special shout-out to my liver. You are doing a sterling job at keeping up with my drinking habit and together we can do anything. Thanks for reading!