Bartenders reveal plans for new “creative hub” cocktail bar

cocktail trading co

Three bartenders have unveiled their plans for a new cocktail bar in London’s West End next year, promising to be a creative hub for new concepts, collaborations, flavours and techniques.

Andy Mil, Elliot Ball and Olly Brading (pictured) of consultancy The Cocktail Trading Co (CTC) have secured the site in Great Marlborough Street, Soho, near Oxford Circus, for The CTC Development Bar & Table.

With a cooperative company structure, 25% of the profits will go to the team that operate each outlet alongside perks to allow staff to lead a more sustainable lifestyle.

The 50-capacity space, formerly called & Co, is in the basement of Urban Leisure Group’s brasserie Central & Co, which will supply bar food to match the constantly changing menu of “experience-led” cocktails.

The team want their new bar to offer “honestly-priced yet highly innovative, exciting and expertly made cocktails” in a “fun, laid-back and unpretentious environment”. Due to launch in March, it will open Mondays to Saturdays from 4pm to midnight.

With the freedom and skill to trial out new concepts, collaborations, flavours and techniques, they want The CTC Development Bar & Table to be “a creative hub for both consumers and industry insiders to sample fresh and exciting creations at tastings, master classes and cocktail events”.

They will have a menu of good-quality non-alcoholic cocktails, called “Faux Cocktails”, which will use fresh seasonal ingredients instead of the “usual sickly grenadine-based” mocktails.

The “tasteful yet quirky” interior design is described as being an eclectic mix of classic Victorian “gin palace” spliced up with elements of vintage and industrial London. Expect carved wood and copper bar surroundings, classic green and oxblood tube tiles and cast-iron and marble tables mixed in with raw brickwork and classic pub fixtures.

It will also have street art exhibitions from young artists and a unique collection of cocktail memorabilia and paraphernalia alongside vintage upholstered chesterfields. Music will range from old-school hip-hop and 70s & 80s funk to “the occasional touch of cheese”.

The Cocktail Trading Co is a bartender-led co-operative specialising in bar operations and consulting in every aspect of the drinks industry, from menu and cocktail design to consumer training, brand creation, and much more.

The consultancy was set up in March this year by Andy and Elliot, who formerly worked together at Steam & Rye in the City of London, with Olly who Andy worked with at London Cocktail Club bars.

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