7 London Bars You Need To Drink At Before You Die
Although London is full of glitzy, glam, modern tourist attractions, you just can't beat one of the most English experiences out there; a visit to the local pub. From upbeat and luxurious to classic and historical, here are seven London bars you have to drink at before you die!
1. 28°-50° Wine Workshop & Kitchen
This classy wine bar is similar to those you find in Paris, and has a low-key, almost rustic feel. 28°-50° won't leave you wondering whether you're ordering food with your wine, or wine with your food; they offer them in equal measure! Order full meals with your vino, or stick with refined bar snacks, including cheeses from La Fromagerie.
2. Ape & Bird
Pay a visit to this dusky, mysterious cavern, with bare concrete walls and a few flickering candles. It’s what you'd call a ‘speakeasy’; its basement location, miniature dark wood stools and dim lighting could mean nothing else. However, we're not talking US-style; this dive bar is Venetian-inspired (Aperol, Campari and Cynar mixes dominate the menu) and it serves some of the best spritzes in town. A great little den to have up your sleeve!
3. Beaufort Bar at The Savoy
Located at the most famous hotel in London, this ultra-suave and supremely high-end bar is probably the most attractive space to sip a drink London. Regardless of the fact it sits right off the ever-bustling hotel lobby, it’s a hideaway of supreme style and opulence. The sleek, jet-black walls, theatrical lighting, and tastefully placed touches of gold make the experience truly special.
4. Cross Keys
With its canopy of copper implements, less than attractive carpet, and walls covered in vintage beeraphernalia, Cross Keys feels like it hasn’t changed for decades, evoking memories of a bygone era of boozing. However, the best thing about it is it's about as non-touristy a bar as you can get, in the very touristy West End. Standing outside in the failing sunlight, sipping a pint, and enjoying the aroma floating across from the nearby chippie; it's one of the most perfectly English experiences you’ll have during your trip!
5. Dukes Hotel
Dukes is famous for the theatrical presentation of martinis, brought out on a tray, and is one of London's truly classic bars. Although the martinis are the toast of the city, make sure you try the rest of the list. The standard is, by all accounts, phenomenal. Sure, the drinks are expensive, but the bar snacks are amazing. A great place to take your drinks date, you won't fail to impress!
6. French House
If want to experience a true slice of history, look no further than French House. Some of the most famous British historical figures have graced these halls, including Charles de Gaulle (who used the pub as a workplace during World War II), Dylan Thomas, Francis Bacon, and many more. In true traditional fashion, French House is small, filled with mementos, and has a merry buzz at peak times. This is Soho history. Come and enjoy it!
7. Lamb & Flag
For another classic London experience brimful of history, make sure you get down to the Lamb and Flag. Just one example is this squabble of 1679; when the poet John Dryden took a beating from thugs hired by the notorious poet and libertine John Wilmot, 2nd Earl of Rochester, in the tiny alleyway outside. The interior is comfortable and delightfully dingy, about as old-world London as you can get in today's busy Covent Garden. Join the happy crowd outside with your pint, or head upstairs for a simple meal of classic pub food.