A preview of events, pop-ups and drinks at London Cocktail Week from October 5 to 11
Across London, bartenders will be shaking and straining for the return of London Cocktail Week. Now in its sixth year, the festival features a packed programme of pop-up bars, master classes, supper clubs and many other events for consumers and the trade. The self-guided Cocktail Tours will return, inviting people to explore 275 of the capital’s best bars to sample specially created cocktails.
Running from October 5 to 11, London Cocktail Week will have its main hub in Old Spitalfields Market in east London. The whole 1,200 square metres of the historic covered market will become a “cocktail village” of pop-up bars, trucks, vans and bicycles serving up drinks. There will also be street food stalls and live music. The festival is also returning to Soho where drinks group Diageo will bring the World Class London Cocktail Week Hub to Poland Street.
Wristbands, which entitle people to offers and £5 cocktails on the Cocktail Tours and at pop-ups, cost £10 at LondonCocktailWeek.com. They will be available to pick up along with a free pocket bar guide from both the hubs. Wristbands will be available to members of the trade for free.
Participating bars include City Social where new bar manager Tim Laferla has created special cocktail, the Vitamin Sea, made with Hendrick’s Gin, Cocchi Americano aperitif, carrot soda, and orange and sea buckthorn sherbet. Oskar Kinberg at Oskar’s Bar at Dabbous has devised the Vodka Lemonade – a mix of Ketel One vodka, homemade strawberry lemonade, marjoram and lemon verbena.
Gordon Ramsay’s Heddon Street Kitchen will offer the Aut-umnal Embrace made with Bacardi rum, blackberry, ginger, apple juice and lemon juice. At Mews of Mayfair, the cocktail will be the Sesame Street – a whisky sour with Glenmorangie whisky infused with apricots, sesame oil and egg white, topped with toasted seeds.
Highlights will include Monkey Shoulder whisky’s pop-up bar created by Andrew Harrod, Adam Manning and David White from The Dead Parrot in Horsham, West Sussex, after they won a national competition in June (pictured).
From October 6 to 9, Woodford Reserve bourbon will take over a railway arch in Old Street for The Art of the Old Fashioned pop-up, offering variations on the classic created by leading international bartenders.
Bacardi Brown-Forman Brands and Patron tequila will bring 24 of the world’s best bartenders to London for the 24hrBarBuild. Teams from four cities will each develop a cutting-edge bar inspired by Patron, Grey Goose vodka, Bacardi rum or Bombay Sapphire gin. They will open on Saturday October 10, with the winner being the bar with the most sales.
London Cocktail Week also encompasses other big events including The Whisky Exchange Whisky Show at Old Billingsgate Market on October 3 and 4 and the World’s 50 Best Bars announcement.