Raise your glasses… London Cocktail Week is returning for 2014
London is world-renowned for its nightlife and bars, so it’s no surprise that cocktail drinking is quite the popular pastime amongst Londoners. Happy hour… or not, like many others, I love to catch up with friends over a Mojito or two after a stressful day at work. For me personally, a cocktail is more glamorous than my usual tipple and the flavours just can’t be outdone by a regular spirit and mixer.
From 6 to 12 October, the country’s biggest drinks festival London Cocktail Week is returning to the capital for the fifth year in a row. Events and offers will be taking place at over 160 bars, with 176 bespoke events including tastings, master classes, pop-ups and parties. To have access to unlimited £4 cocktails and free sampling and cocktail demonstrations, as well as the Cocktail Tours, all you need is a £10 wristband.
The main hub during the festival will be the Ketel One Hub in Seven Dials, near Covent Garden, where you can pick up your wristband and meet the LCW team who can help you plan your drinking. There will also be experts giving out tips, tasters and masterclasses.
Just some of the bars taking part include South Place Bar & Grill, Bourne & Hollingsworth, Callooh Callay, Almeida Restaurant & Bar, Dirty Martini, London Cocktail Club, Altitude Champagne Bar, Floridita, Barts, Hix Oyster & Chop House, Bobo Social, The Lucky Pig, McQueen, Reverend J.W. Simpson, W Lounge and many more.
- London Cocktail Week runs from Monday 6 to Sunday 12 October 2014. To get your £10 wristband, visit one of the LCW hubs in Seven Dials, Spitalfields, Kings’ Road or London Bridge. For more information and listings, visit the London Cocktail Week website.
Just some of the LCW events on around town…
- Baileys Martini Café, 39 Monmouth Street, WC2H 9DD
Baileys Original Irish Cream are hosting a pop-up mobile bar atop a Baileys branded bike, stationed outside 39 Monmouth Street in Seven Dials, Covent Garden. Members of the public will be able to sip on complimentary tasters of the ‘Flat White Martinis’ from 4–8pm (8 – 10 October) and 12-8pm (11 October). For more information, visit the Baileys website.
- Mr Fogg’s, 15 Bruton Lane, Mayfair, W1J 6JD
The launch of Cointreau Noir (a unique blend of Cointreau and Rémy Martin cognac) on Thursday 9 October from 4-6pm.
Bottomless Tipsy Tea on Sunday 12 October from 2-6pm. Guests will have the chance to refill their alcoholic teapots as many times as they want within their two-hour booking. The ‘tea’ will be accompanied by sandwiches and cakes, as per your usual afternoon tea. LCW price is £60 instead of the usual £70. For more information, visit Mr Fogg’s website.
- The Cowbell pop-up, 9 Shorts Gardens, WC2H 9AT
The winning trio from Monkey’s Shoulder Ultimate Bartender Challenge will be wowing drinkers during London Cocktail Week with their pop-up The Cowbell. Every night a different Glasgow DJ will be on the decks, while street food duo Deeneys will be offering their The Macbeth haggis toasties. As well as plenty of opportunities to drink amidst a Glasgow party vibe, there will also be talks and other entertainment on nightly. Open daily during LCW from 12pm-11pm. For more information, visit the LCW website.
- Underground Punch Pong League – Underground Mash Up, Art’s Theatre Stage, 6-7 Great Newport Street, WC2H 7JB
Usually this event involves bartenders pitted against each other in a beer pong tournament, but with London Cocktail Club’s Black Pearl Punch instead of beers. For LCW, editors and journalists from the trade press will battle it out instead on Monday 6 October from 5-7pm. Free. There will be drinks on offer with a LCW wristband downstairs at the Covent Garden Cocktail Club. For more information, visit the LCW website event page.
- Bulleit Bourbon 1950s Diner, London Cocktail Club, 224 Shaftesbury Avenue, WC2H 8EB
The Bulleit Bourbon Diner will take residency at London Cocktail Club on Shaftesbury Avenue during LCW bringing a taste of 1950s Americana. As well as a jukebox playing 1950s classics, roller-skating waitresses, there will also be a Bulleit cocktail menu to accompany classic diner dishes such as corn dogs, deep-fried pickles in Bulleit Rye batter and fries with Cajun salt dusting. Open Monday-Saturday during LCW. Opening times vary. For more information, visit the LCW LCC page.
- Maggie’s, Fulham Road, London, SW10 9QL
Eighties nightclub Maggie’s will be hosting a Malibu Beach Party in conjunction with the popular rum brand on Wednesday 8 October from 8pm-3am. Free entry before 10.30pm. Guests will be greeted with flower garlands, beach hats and sunglasses before taking part in beach games such as limbo and coconut shy. Pina Colada and Malibu Watering Cans will be the main drinks on the night. For more information, visit the Maggie’s website.
For Metro Girl’s review of London Cocktail Week 2012, click here.