Last month we visited Sin City, and had a blast! Well known for frozen Margarita yards and free well drinks in casinos, there are also some fantastic proper cocktails out there to discover. Of course there are far too many bars to visit in one (or twenty) trips, but here are my top five of 2017 in the order we visited them.
Last weekend in the beautiful listed building One Mayfair, Cocktails in the City returned to London. After the massive success of last year’s summer event in Bedford Square Gardens, I was very intrigued to see how the event would transfer to an indoor event.
Bigger and better than ever, this year’s event has moved to an international scale, as the bars featured included venues from Paris and Amsterdam.
Over 20 bars and even more cocktails were available over the evening, and the theme seemed to be evocative, original and creative collaborations, far beyond what you would find in a standard bar.
In the heart of Amsterdam, on the Lijnbaanssteeg, not far from Centraal Station, you will find Tales and Spirits. Without a doubt the drinking highlight of our trip to Amsterdam, as well as being the most fun venue we visited.
The highlight of the night was definitely Polynesian themed cocktail bar, Sugar Cane. Badged as ‘A taste of the Tropics in South London’, it was a very nicely laid out bar, decorated in traditional Tiki Bar style. All the bar staff were wearing Hawaiian shirts, and the lights above the bar looked like puffa fish!
I love Callooh Callay. Tucked away off the main drag in Shoreditch, London, it has all the fun of a secret bar but never leaves you feeling left out. We made an unplanned visit recently when we found ourselves in the area, and wanted to show some friends who hadn’t been there before. We made our way into the small front bar area, and quietly asked if there might be any room ‘on the other side of the wardrobe’. Luckily, there was a table booked for a party not due for another hour, so we took our chance. Once through the Narnia-style wardrobe door, we found ourselves inside a beautifully decorated room, with tin bath sofas and tables made out of sewing machine stands!
We had such a fun experience at Cocktails in the City, the only problem was we were not there long enough to try them all!
Every stall had such friendly and knowledgeable bartenders, who had a real passion for the work they do. However, after much exploring, chatting and tasting of their wares, I managed to choose three cocktails to sample. They were all delicious in their own way, and I would visit all of the bars in question. So, in the order I sampled them, my three recommendations are as follows:
We toured rooftop bars, chain restaurants, dive bars, Mexican cantinas and even an outdoor beach-bar on Coney Island to find the best frozen drinks on offer. They were almost exclusively margarita-based, with the exception of a fantastic spiked lemonade affair known as a Bayou Twister (which still had a twist of margarita in the mix). The flavours were plentiful, including passionfruit, raspberry, strawberry, mixed berry,peach and even coconut!