Lyaness (Formerly Dandelyan) | Next-level cocktails on the Southbank
Last Updated: 17th April 2019
They say you should quit while you’re ahead.
Which, presumably is why – after packing in punters every night, garnering critical acclaim from every corner and scoring the number one spot on the World’s Best Bars list last year – Dandelyan closed.
Of course, the lesser-known, second half of that saying is that you should quit while you’re ahead… only to return with something that’s even more blisteringly, mind-blowingly excellent than what came before.
At least, that’s the approach founder Ryan Chetiyawardana – aka Mr Lyan – seems to have taken. Because after a month’s refurb and over a year’s experimentation, brewing, and menu planning, Dandelyan has been reincarnated into a totally new form – Lyaness.
Retaining the elegant layout of its predecessor, Lyaness is now swathed in baby blue tones, with intimate velvet booths and sofas, midcentury armchairs with mirrored cocktail tables, and a dedicated DJ booth – while keeping the grandiose green marble-topped bar and the sweeping views over the river. They’re also continuing to serve their cocktail-paired afternoon tea, which includes a French Martini blancmange.
The cocktail menu, as you might expect, is nothing like you’d expect. It’s divided up into six sections, each themed around a particular, unique ingredient that they’ve created in their lab, and each with three drinks to showcase it. Those ingredients include:
Purple Pineapple – for this one, they “deconstructed, stretched, manipulated, and massaged” a pineapple by adding accents of smoke, citrus, herbality, and tannins, to produce the most intense pineapple flavour possible. It goes into drinks like the absinthe-fuelled Morning Glory Fizz, and the gin & champagne-loaded White Sbagliato.
King Monkey Nut – through controlled exposure to oxidation (something that’s typically detrimental to flavour), they’ve created a nut extract that’s extraordinarily aromatic. It amps up cocktails like the Cognac-aided Air Mail, and the rum-soaked Royal Bermuda Yacht Club.
Aromatised Milk Wine – by entirely removing the fat content from milk, they’ve distilled it into something akin to a non-alcoholic aromatic wine without any of the heavy, coating qualities of dairy. It forms the backbone of the Progressive Penndennis Club along with a little “illegal mezcal”.
To help you navigate through all of this, there’s a handy chart at the end which shows you precisely how light/rich each of the drinks is, and when’s the best time to drink them.
Which, believe it or not, isn’t just “anytime”.
NOTE: Lyaness is now open, and taking bookings on their website HERE.
Lyaness | Sea Containers London, 20 Upper Ground, SE1 9PD
Like bars by Mr. Lyan? Well good news, because he’s also behind a restaurant, Cub…