London’s Best Gin Bars
Last Updated: 8th April 2020 | Main image: GinTonica at The Distillery
G & T are very close together on the keyboard.
Which is why you should never sign off an email with ‘regards’… especially after you’ve had a couple of G&Ts.
So it’s best to set aside a whole evening to enjoy one of these excellent juniper distillate slingers, which are without a shadow of a doubt… London’s best gin bars.
East London Liquor Company | Mile End
This craft distillery-cum-cocktail bar is located in an old glue factory next to Victoria Park. With the help of two large, glimmering copper stills they produce their own rum, whiskey and gin, all of which can be bought on site or enjoyed shaken up into a cocktail in their bar. And, as is only right for one of London’s best gin bars, they also run tours and gin tastings on Friday and Saturday afternoons that will take you – G&T in hand – behind the scenes at the distillery, where you’ll hear a little of gin’s dark history and see how the stuff is made before moving through to the maturation room for a spirits tasting, both of East London Liquor Company’s own juniper-hooch and a selection of contrasting world gins. READ MORE
Details: 221 Grove Road, Bow Wharf, E3 5SN
The Distillery | Notting Hill
Home to Portobello Road Gin, this four-storey venue houses – from top to bottom – a micro hotel, a gin museum, two bars (one of which is a Spanish-inspired temple to the G&T serving over 200 gins), and a 400-litre basement distillery tank. It’s also the new home of The Ginstitute, where you can learn to blend your own gin, to your own personal tastes. READ MORE
Details: 186 Portobello Road, W11 1LA
Ladies and Gentlemen | Kentish Town
An unusual Kentish Town cocktail bar located – as it happens – in an abandoned underground toilet block at the bottom of Highgate Road. With the help of a humble 16-litre pot copper still they produce their own Highwayman Gin on site. And it goes into some truly delicious cocktails. READ MORE
Details: 2 Highgate Road, NW5 1NR
Mother’s Ruin | Walthamstow
Housed in an old first world war munitions factory with two small orchards on site, the Mother’s Ruin team use home-grown and locally foraged fruit and flowers to craft an array of fruit liquors. From Friday to Sunday, they open the distillery doors to host a tiny Gin Palace where – with or without their liquor selection – you can sample over 70 different types of gin.
Details: Unit 18, Ravenswood Industrial Estate, E17 9HQ
Mr. Fogg’s Gin Parlour | Covent Garden
Mr. Fogg’s Gin Parlour is the home of Phileas Fogg’s late aunt Gertrude Fogg …and over 315 bottles of gin. Book in for G&Tea where you can sip on a plethora of nectarous gin cocktails served to you in the finest china, alongside a selection of home-made and authentically Victorian sweet and savoury delicacies. They also host their very own ‘Gin Safari’ where, as well as an hour-and-a-half of expert tuition and two first rate Gin & Tonics, you will also sample six different gins from around the globe. READ MORE
Details: 58 St. Martin’s Lane, WC2N 4EA
Pedler | Peckham
This well-dressed spot comes courtesy of the distillers behind Little Bird Gin, which has a way of finding itself not only shaken up in some hard-hitting cocktails but also the food from time to time. And what it loses in sheer choice, it makes up for in the reverence for which they treat their chosen tipple. Every famous gin cocktail on earth has been given a fresh twist by them, with ingredients like peri peri grown on the hillside of an African volcano spicing up their Red Snapper, to chocolate bitters in their Mai Tai. READ MORE
Details: 58 Peckham Rye, SE15 4JR
By Appointment Only | Liverpool Street
A subterranean drinking den set inside a stunning Victorian Bath House, By Appointment Only is – no exaggeration – one of the most beautiful venues in this city, and, coincidentally, one of London’s best gin bars, too. The street-level entrance is a small, oddly incongruous Turkish-style building nestled among the offices of Liverpool Street. Head inside, and you’ll find a gorgeous bar serving cocktails made with their own in-house spirit infusions. And they’re not fooling around with your typical elderflower or sloe flavours – try the ‘tossed salad’ or venison & truffle gin on for size. READ MORE
Details: Bishopsgate Churchyard, EC2M 3TJ
214 Bermondsey | Bermondsey
Representing the South in the list of London’s best gin bars is 214 Bermondsey, whose bar is made of wood, concrete, and gin. In fact, there are 100 different varieties on display behind the timber bar, which you can sample solo or in flights of three, delivered to you unlabelled (with a bottle of their own small-batch Bermondsey Tonic). The idea is to taste them, rate them, and then open the sealed envelope they came with to reveal which is which.
Details: 214 Bermondsey Street, SE1 3TQ
The Gin Bar at Holborn Dining Room | Holborn
Okay so, if 100 different gins sounded impressive, get a load of the The Gin Bar at Holborn Dining Room – they have five times as many, with 30 different tonics to go with them. All in all, that makes over 14k possible G&Ts, so choose wisely. And if you end up deciding to stay and try a few more, it wouldn’t be the worst thing – with red leather bar chairs, and a stunning Art Deco-styled bar, it’s quite a beautiful place to hang around.
Details: Rosewood Hotel, 252 High Holborn, WC1V 7EN
City of London Distillery | St. Paul’s
London has a COLD. Which is a good thing, because here it specifically refers to the City of London Distillery – a basement City drinking den with two copper stills patiently distilling gin… which, naturally, you can then order. They also have a private workshop filled with miniature stills, where you can create your own bespoke gin to take home with you. READ MORE
Details: 22-24 Bride Lane, EC4Y 8DT
Gin… gin rummy… rummy…rum… Fate seems to want us to point you to a rundown of London’s best rum bars