An ancient pillar of London’s legal industry, Holborn has a rich heritage. It buzzes eternally with people moving in and out of its streets, littered with some of London’s most eccentric bars and clubs.
Here are a handful of our favourite spots for drinking with friends in London’s Midtown.
The Zetter Townhouse
The Zetter Townhouse’s cocktail lounge is an opulent, intriguing space. Its interior is designed to make you feel as if you’re in an eccentric private residence rather than a public bar, and it does just that. Sink into one of the red velvet armchairs and absorb your surroundings over a delicious cocktail – you’ll be transported into a dreamy bliss.
The unique recipes that Tony Conigliaro has created for The Zetter Townhouse pay homage to the area’s distilling heritage. Old recipes for tinctures, bitters and herbal remedies have inspired not only the cocktails but also the homemade cordials and infusions that sit behind the apothecary-style counter.
The Holborn Whippet
If you’re looking for a casual craft ale hangout in the area with excellent atmosphere, look no further. Its dinky size means that reaching the bar can be a bit of a squeeze, but the ordeal is worth it. The Holborn Whippet‘s entirely draught beer list is proclaimed all killer and no filler – serving up a menu of daily-changing keg and cask ales and crowd-pleasing bar snacks and pizza to choose from. Inside, the bar’s low lighting and dark wood make you feel like you’re supping a pint on the set of a 1940s British drama (only with much better beer!) You can book a table for dinner or a large area for parties too.
The Coral Room
This dressed-to-impress 1920s inspired bar was designed in collaboration with the renowned Martin Brudnizki Design Studios. Its bold paintwork, magnificent Murano chandeliers and ice-cool marble bar provide the perfect backdrop for a stylish evening soiree. While the cocktail menu is as cocky as the iconic candy-coloured walls, it’s the sparkling wine menu that takes centre stage, one of the longest lists in London, organising bottles by county.
The Coral Room lives by the musing:
History lives here. It loves and laughs here. It lets down its hair here, kicks up its heels and throws caution to the wind. It always has.
A melting pot of potions and paintings, renowned British artist and caricaturist Gerald Scarfe has lent his name to the Scarfes Bar. Decked with his own collection of artwork, Gerald describes Scarfes as my personal art gallery, where you can see my life on the walls. Curated by mixologist artisans and connoisseurs of the drinks trade, the menu features cocktails inspired by some of Gerald’s most memorable sketches. The venue oozes gentleman’s club chic; deep velvet chairs, a roaring fire and shelves filled with over 1,000 hand-picked antique books create a true sense of old-school style.
A firm favourite for a little friendly competition! The brainchild of Flight Club co-founder Adam Breeden, Bounce seamlessly merges the homely comfort of a speakeasy bar and restaurant with the thrill of table tennis. This sprawling basement space brings the game from the recesses of a fusty bar to the centre stage of a night out. Not one to rest on its laurels, Bounce also gets techy with state of the art projection mapping to create the industry-leading concept, Wonderball. With thirst-quenching cocktails served all night, delivered straight to your table, ping pong aficionados and novices alike are guaranteed to have a ball.
Where is your favourite spot for having drinks in Holborn? Let us know in the comments!