To call Black Rock a bar would be slightly misleading.
Because there is no bar.
Instead, the proprietors of this sleek subterranean drinking hole – who were also responsible for the late cocktailing wonderland The Worship Street Whistling Shop – have taken a large 185 year-old oak tree, laid it on its end, split it in half, and turned it into a gigantic whisky-filled table. And we mean that literally. Because they’ve also cut two channels down the full length of the trunk, lined them with charred American & European oak, covered them with glass and filled each with 17 litres of whisky cocktails which age as they’re stored in there, and are delivered straight into your glass through taps at the end of the trunk.
You can therefore sit and watch as twin rivers of glorious booze flow directly into your drinking vessel, scoring you either a Cherry River (with American whisky and cherries) or a special house blend of whisky…which the owners will continue to tweak over time.
But if that doesn’t take your fancy, then one of Black Rock’s roaming bartenders will happily mix you a cocktail at your table from their short-but-sweet list. Perhaps a Rice Highball with Nikka barrel & sake? Or maybe a 40 Shades with a mix of apple & fennel pollen?
And if that doesn’t take your fancy then, well, the first thing you should do is bear in mind that both human beings AND whisky are made up of 60% water… making the latter a perfectly healthy choice of beverage at any time of the day or night*. And the second thing you should do is explore Black Rock’s large library of international whiskies. With over 250 bottles of Scotch, Irish, American, and Japanese grain-spirits lining its walls – all of which have been arranged by flavour (smoke, spice, fruit, etc.) as opposed to region, before being split into three simple price-points – your chances of finding the right one are pretty high.
Of course, all this drinking will probably make you hungry. Which makes the news that they also serve haggis balls with marmalade and Guinness-fried oysters particularly welcome.
40% of you, after all, is not water.
NOTE: Black Rock is open now: Monday to Saturday, 5pm ’til late. No reservations – just turn up.
*Less so the day, of course.
Black Rock | 9 Christopher Street, Shoreditch, London EC2A 2BS
Making a night of it? Check out our guide to the best restaurants in Shoreditch…
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