Fancy A Cocktail?

Aaahhh, Friday evenings. Don’t you love that frisson of excitement that you get at 5pm, when you can leave your desk and go outside the office, basking in the knowledge that you have two full days to yourself. Two precious days to do whatever you want, to stop conforming to rules, to just be, whatever you want to be.

We’ve gotten in the habit of going out on Fridays. We have to admit that we’re not exactly night owls. In fact, especially on weekends, we prefer to start the day early, go out, explore, make the most of our free time. Which means that by evening we’re ready to return home, so there are rarely any night-time activities on our calendars. Call us boring if you like, but we’re past the days when we enjoyed sleeping all day, go out late, and crawl home in the middle of the night. We think some people call that growing older!

Well, on Fridays it’s different. Or at least slightly. We try to go out for happy hour, enjoy some time out before going back home to cook dinner. And we’ve been striving to find new places to rendezvous in our enduring bid to get to know London better. We’ve found some gems too, like Baltic and Dandelyon, which are very close to home, 214 Bermondsey, and B Street Deli, both on Bermondsey Street, and London Grind, which makes some pretty impressive cocktails. As we racked our brains on where to go yesterday these old faithfuls popped into our minds. But we wanted to try somewhere new. Somewhere we’ve never been before.

With one of us working in The City, we wanted to find a spot close by. But we know from experience that we’re not the only ones thinking this way. In fact, many places are super packed with the happy hour crowd, all jostling for a space at the bar and spilling pints onto each other as they joyously toast the start of the weekend. We stopped by The Sign of The Don for a glass of wine. Perhaps the crowd was too stiff for our tastes, or maybe it was the tiny wine glasses, but we were unimpressed and left after finishing our wine, which, since the glasses were pretty small, was quite quick.

We decided to give The City another shot last night and walked the few blocks to Silk & Grain. We thought it would be crowded too, but were pleasantly surprised to get a seat at the bar. Since we’d read on Bar Chick that this place does pretty good cocktails, we declined a peek at the wine list and instead poured over the cocktail menu.

First off, this place is pretty big and quite fancy, with ornate ceilings, a large wooden bar, and comfortable stools. It’s one of those places that have a welcoming atmosphere, making you feel that you can sit there for hours and just try their cocktails. Of course, for that to happen, the libations have to be good. And we weren’t disappointed. We started with a barrel-aged Manhattan and a barrel-aged Moscow Mule. They were both extremely good, the Mule served in a proper copper mug that shows you this place just really takes its cocktails seriously.

Barrel-aged Moscow Mule

Barrel-aged Moscow Mule

But it’s what happened next that solidified that thought. One of us asked for a tequila cocktail that was on the menu, but the mixologist shook his head. “It’s not that good,” he said, motioning to his colleague who made a face. So the tequila lover left it to the expert to make a Margarita, and again wasn’t disappointed. The other tried the gin-based Panky Club, also a suggestion by the mixologist. Pretty good. We ended the night with a barrel-aged Negroni and a barrel-aged “Elle Presidente”, which also hit the spot.

Of course, we could have stayed longer. But we decided to walk away while we could still walk without swaying and at least get closer to home. But we’ll surely be back. Pretty soon.

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