Eight London Bars to Visit Now

From sophisticated drinking dens to a chilled-out spot for weekend pints, these are our favourite haunts in London for an evening tipple.

Whether seeking out a sophisticated drinking den to nurse a negroni for an hour or so, scouring East London for a chilled-out spot for weekend pints with friends or selecting an experimental bar to impress your latest Hinge date, our list has got you covered.

Capital spots for an evening tipple

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Double Standard

King's Cross

Kitted out with retro flare – red-leather banquette seating, a disco soundtrack and net curtains – the Double Standard, which occupies half of the ground floor of The Standard Hotel in King’s Cross, has a strong party vibe. Order a nightcap (we recommend the chocolate stout martini) to the library lounge, and peruse a selection of ex-library books while you sip. Pair with snacks prepared by ex-Pachamama chef Adam Rawson – the herby scotch egg with fennel tartare and dill mustard is a best-seller.

Address

10 Argyle Street WC1H 8EG

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The Blind Pig

Soho

Stacked above Jason Atherton's scrumptious restaurant, Social Eating House, is one of the best speakeasies in the city. Make for Soho's Poland Street, look under the antique "optician" sign and clang the blindfolded hog doorknocker to enter. Inside, peruse a cocktail list modelled on children's literature - try the "kindergarten cup" (Skittles mixed with Ketel One vodka) or "Robin Hood, quince of thieves?" (brandy, quince liqueur and mead). For something a little more mature, the pub grub-style bar snacks have all the Michelin flare of the food downstairs.

Address

58 Poland Street W1F 7NR

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The Berkeley Bar & Terrace

Knightsbridge

Hidden at the back of The Berkeley, this might be the most secretive terrace in Knightsbridge. Sleek interiors with a combination of velvet marshmallow pouffes and salvaged walnut-wood panels creates the perfect environment for a tête-à-tête and tequila. If the bar space is full, sip on cocktails or a rare whisky in The Snug – a private hideaway dominated by a large-scale abstract mural featuring women’s faces by Irish interior designer Bryan O’Sullivan and New York artist TM Davy.

Address

The Berkeley Wilton Place Knightsbridge SW1X 7RL

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Untitled

Dalston

Tony Conigliaro's Dalston joint, Untitled, is his largest (and most impressive) bar yet. (Conigliaro also runs 69 Colebrooke Row and Bar Termini). Each of Untitled's 12 cocktails - prepared in a laboratory using scientific molecular mixology - are designed to look, taste and smell just like their names. "Waif" blends rhubarb, rose, silver tip tea and champagne and is served in an elegant glass that could easily snap if gulping to eagerly. Interiors are inspired by Andy Warhol's "The Factory" studio in New York and Untitled proves itself as a similarly creative cove.

Address

538 Kingsland Road E8 4AH

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Tayēr + Elementary

Old Street

Setting the London cocktail scene aflutter, Tayēr + Elementary’s split personality appeals to all. The front-facing Elementary comprises of an industrial space – exposed vents and floor-to-ceiling windows – with the action centred around a single, long wooden bar. Order the palo santo gimlet (gin, sherry, Lillet Blanc and a cordial flavoured with South American wood) if you fancy something with a smoky. For a more experimental drinking experience, slide behind a concrete wall imprinted with jars and glasses to Tayēr (Spanish for “workshop”).

Address

152 Old Street EC1V 9BW

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Gosnells of London

Peckham

As London’s only mead (a spirit made from fermented honey) bar, Gosnells is already a noteworthy drinking den. Order the bar’s bestseller, the “mead-hattan” – a blend of barrel-aged mead with gin, honey and bitters – and pair with small plates from the Coal Rooms kitchen downstairs. Should you develop a liking for the fermented spirit, Gosnells hosts mead master classes, honey tastings and food pairings.

Address

Unit 2 Print Village Chadwick Road SE15 4PU

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The Drop, Kings Cross

From the Harts Group - the team behind Barrafina and Quo Vadis - comes The Drop. So called after a) the bar's location in swish Coal Drops Yard and b) a measure of wine, The Drop is a small, cosy spot for an evening tipple with friends. The cavernous space is free of pomp - choose from a simple menu of 20 reds and 20 whites, plus a handful of rosé, orange and fortified wines, and grab a seat at the bar counter - the best seats in the house in our opinion. If you're with a group, nab a table in a candle-lit corner that hugs the bare-brick walls.

Address

Unit 22-24 N1C 4DH

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Hacha, Dalston

Mezcal has elbowed its way onto some of London's best bar menus in the past few years. Now, Hacha - London's only Agaveria - has pledged its total devotion to the Mexican spirit. Inside the bright, café-like space, you'll spot 25 bottles of the stuff numbered and racked up on the shelf. Reinventing familiar cocktails with a kick of tequila or mezcal, Hacha is the place to get to grips with the nuances of this spirit. Order the creamy Hacha Colada - a blend of sultana-infused Anejo, horchata and chargrilled pineapple capped with toasted coconut - and then kick back with a plate of tacos.

Address

378 Kingsland Road E8 4AA

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