by Leighanne Bent
Summer means a lot of different things, to a lot of different people; but to us it means guiltlessly taking advantage of London’s best summer cocktails. From limited edition Pisco and Tonic sips to classic Pina Coladas, here are DesignMyNight’s top 10 drinks for summer in the capital.
Forget about G&T; there’s a new drink in town. Dirty Martini have created a handful of Pisco and Tonic cocktails for summer 2017, and each one comes served full of exotic fruit. Think dragonfruit and prickly pear to peach and grapefruit. They’re only here until the end of August though, so make sure you get down ASAP.
Probably the most Insta-worthy cocktail featured in this list, the Pink Clouds at Bird of Smithfield is an amazing mix of Cointreau, dark chocolate liqueur, sour cherry cream and mole bitters. This pretty in pink drink – topped with toasted marshmallows and fresh raspberries – is more than worth the tube journey to Farringdon.
Dreamed up by former Nightjar bartender, The Gibson is one of the best cocktail bars in East London. You’ll find loads of creations at this speakeasy-style bar, but for a refreshing summer mix, you can’t go wrong with the Blue Mountain Mai Thai. Made with rum, fudge sherry cordial and lots of other unique ingredients – it’s gonna blow your mind.
Is summer even summer without Pimm’s? Bourne and Hollingsworth (one of London’s prettiest restaurants) don’t think so. That’s why they’ve got four different versions of the drink to keep you hydrated. Depending on what you fancy, choose between The Pimm’s and Proper, Pimm’s Fizz, The Gentleman’s Mule and The Pimm’s Short.
Dirty Bones might be famous for their NYC-inspired dishes, but they’ve got a brand new list of summer cocktails with A-list status for summer. Bow Down Peaches is a fresh and fruity number made with Ketel One Vodka, Martini Rosso, fresh muddled peach, coconut water, vanilla, lemon juice and peach bitters, and don’t worry – you get to keep the sweet treat it comes with!
Little Bat is a neighbourhood bar in Islington with plenty of quirks. Although they have an impressive selection of in-house creations, be sure to pull up a stool and make a move on the Pina Colada Old Fashioned. A twist on the classic, this particular version is made with coconut infused Bacardi 8yr rum, Pina Colada syrup and angostura bitters.
Just in case you’ve been hiding under a rock for the last couple of months – Frose is the tipple of the moment. And we happen to know where you can find the best one in the city: Ben’s Canteen. These guys are so on top of their game that they’ve created a twist on the popular serve for Wimbledon – a British mix, featuring strawberries and cream.
If there’s one thing we know, it’s that Britain’s weather is hormonal AF. So alfresco drinking doesn’t always go to plan; that’s where the mighty basement bar comes in. Reverend JW Simpson is a unique drinking den in Fitzrovia and their summer cocktails are one-of-a-kind. A Giddy Thing is made with dill-infused Belvedere vodka, elderflower and homemade sour solution, topped with soda.
The Walrus Room is an elusive cocktail bar nestled away in Battersea, and it’s inspired by The Walrus And The Carpenter by Lewis Carroll. Order The Fresita, it’s made with Brugal Ron Blanco, peach, strawberry vermouth and lime – it will whisk you out of South London to somewhere sunny and exotic in no time.
If you’re not jetting off on a sun-soaked holiday this year, Brixton Beach is the next best thing. This beach rooftop has a colourful Cuban theme for summer with golden sand and comfy deckchairs, but more importantly – they have frozen cocktails. Slurp a Pina Colada or get down and dirty with a punchy Margarita.