Fancy kicking this year off with a massive win, like actually keeping your New Year’s Resolutions? Well the key to doing so rests on making a list that is short, fun and 100% achievable by the end of January.
However making lists is – as you well know – extremely boring, so we’ve made your list for you. And controversially it’s full of things you’re going to want to do – you know, all of those fun, life-embracing, celebratory acts that we’ve needed to steer clear of over the past two years.
The items on your list (all of which you can cross off by the end of January) include activities such as attending a workshop on ‘being a stupid’; going skating before having a drink served to you by a cocktail-making jukebox; watching classic silent movies accompanied by live music; seeing Lemn Sissay and Le Gateau Chocolat perform live; and raising a toast to a haggis…
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POP UP EVENTS
The Museum of Architecture’s Gingerbread City
Building an entire city out of gingerbread may sound like a half-baked idea… but when it’s constructed by architects & engineers gathered together by the Museum of Architecture, and housed within a beautiful – but nevertheless inedible – townhouse in Knightsbridge, it’s actually pretty impressive. READ MORE
Details: Until 9th January | 6-7 Motcomb Street, SW1X 8JU | £8.50
TS Eliot Prize Readings
Fan of the spoken word? Then this should be music to your ears. The ten shortlisters for this year’s TS Eliot poetry prize will be performing live at the Southbank Centre. You’ll hear from the likes of Kayo Chingonyi, Selima Hill and Jack Underwood, and the whole evening’s set to be compèred by poet & broadcaster Ian McMillan.
Details: 9th January | Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, SE1 8XX | £12-15
Romeo & Juliet
The Royal Ballet are taking Romeo & Juliet for a spin this year. It’s a tried-and-tested classic originally choreographed by Kenneth MacMillan in 1965, that they’ve recreated to critical acclaim dozens of times since. Expect stunning performances by the likes of Matthew Ball, Marianela Nuñez and Marcelino Sambé; exquisite costumes; and a top-shelf live orchestra playing the dramatic Prokofiev score. Plus, tickets start at £7.
Details: From 10th January | Royal Opera House, Bow Street, London WC2E 9DD | £7-135
London International Mime Festival
If you’ve never heard of the London International Mime Festival, well… that’s not surprising. But it entails nearly four weeks of brilliant performances across a wide range of theatrical genres, from acrobatics and clowning to dance, puppetry, and quintessential mime. This year, the programme includes shows as diverse as a silent, voyeuristic play to a lip-syncing drag Rasputin, as well as interactive workshops on topics like ‘How To Be A Stupid’. READ MORE
Details: 12th January – 6th February | Across London
Solve-A-Long-A Murder She Wrote
If you haven’t yet had the pleasure of watching self-professed super-fan Tim Benzie walk you through a vintage episode of Murder She Wrote, then we heartily encourage you to – whether you’ve seen the programme before or not. He’ll get you to rank suspects using his patented ‘fameometer’ technique (based on the theory that the most famous guest star is always the killer), diving mercilessly into a back-catalogue of 80s B-movies to help you decide; all while gradually morphing into Jessica Fletcher herself.
Details: 13th January | Prince Charles Cinema, 7 Leicester Place, London, WC2H 7BY | £14
London Short Film Festival
It’s Nothing, Lian Meng Rose, Rebecca King, 2021
Not sure if you have the stamina for full-length plays and films after two years of Netflix-hopping on your sofa? Enter the Short Film Festival, a celebration of bitesized films spanning comedy, documentary, romance and more. There’ll be workshops, Q&As and other live events (including a panel with the directors of Sex Education) to bolster the screenings – and at ten days long, this is anything but a short film festival.
Details: 14th – 23rd January | Cinemas across London
London Contemporary Orchestra: 24
Aaand at the other end of the scale we have this: a 24 hour concert. That’s a lot to Handel. But the LCO reckon they’re up to the challenge, and they’ll be playing for an entire day at the Barbican this month. You, on the other hand, will be free to drop in and out as you please, soaking up the meditative sounds of new compositions by electronic artists Actress and KMRU, as well as the six-hour durational String Quartet No 2 by Morton Feldman. Plus, it’ll all be accompanied by László Zsolt Bordos’ hypnotic visual projections.
Details: 15th January | Barbican Centre, Silk Street, EC2Y 8DS | £15-20
Skate Closing Party
Before Somerset House’s ice rink melts away for another year, they’re hosting a blow-out closing weekender. You’ll be able to hit the ice to the tune of Balamii DJs Patrisha and Lucid, before enjoying a little après skate in the Moët & Chandon rinkside bar, complete with a cocktail-making jukebox.
Check out London’s other ice rinks
Details: 15th & 16th January | Somerset House, Strand, London WC2R 1LA | £17.50 + booking fee
Peckham Salvage Yard
This family of east London flea markets has been around so long, it’s practically an antique itself. It remains one of the best places to pick up some retro gems, from mid-century furniture to kitsch homewares, eclectic prints, vintage clothing and more. Plus, it’s all taking place in Peckham’s Copeland Park, so you can hole up at Mike’s or Forza Wine for a little refreshment afterwards.
Details: 16th January (Peckham), 22nd & 23rd January (Hackney) | Copeland Park, London SE15 3SN | Abney Hall, 73A Stoke Newington Church St, London N16 0AS
Upgrading just a smidge from your typical lockdown movie experience, The Lucky Dog Picturehouse are screening a trio of classic silent movies in the atmospheric surrounds of London’s last remaining Victorian music hall. Each night, you’ll see a slapstick feature by Buster Keaton or Harold Lloyd, bolstered by a chorus of comedy shorts and accompanied by an authentic live music soundtrack.
Details: 17th – 19th January | Wilton’s Music Hall, Graces Alley, London E1 8JB | £8-13
This new show at the Royal Court is the next play by Alistair McDowell, whose critically acclaimed 2014 play Pomona was commissioned for a drama school and ended up transferring to the National Theatre. This one takes as its subject a Victorian woman locked up in an asylum with no memory of who she is, or was. When she’s taken on as a spiritual medium’s assistant, strange powers start to emerge alongside fragments of her past. It’s probably going to be very interesting…
Details: 21st January – 5th March | Royal Court, Sloane Square, SW1W 8AS | £12-45
One Track Minds
One Track Minds describes itself as “Desert Island Discs meets The Moth Radio and TED talks.” So if you can imagine that, you’re on the right track. For one night only, a panel of invited celebrity guests – usually including authors, musicians, journalists and philosophers – come together to discuss a song that changed their lives, in a way that frequently leaves an impact on yours, too. READ MORE
Details: 21st January | Wilton’s Music Hall, 1 Graces Alley, E1 8JB | £7-15
The 1920s: Beyond the Roar
It’s almost impossible to imagine how things might have been 100 years ago. Just look at this photograph. So the National Archives – a vast repository of old photographs, forms, letters, and other intriguing artefacts – is putting together a huge exhibition themed around the 1920s. They’ll be hoping to shed light on what life was like for ordinary people, as well as some of the era’s most dramatic social and political movements, with lonely hearts ads on display alongside international peace treaties. And to keep things modern, they’ll be making it somewhat immersive, with the exhibition set in a life-sized recreation of a typical 20s street, winding up in Soho’s famous night club, The 43.
Details: From 21st January | The National Archives, Kew, Richmond, TW9 4DU | Free, just turn up
The House Of Irene Adler
Irene Adler was one of the few people able to mentally compete with Sherlock Holmes, and now she’s disappeared leaving only a cryptic note… The folk at Immercity have created this theatrical escape room in an innocuous-looking office block in Kentish Town, which they’ve transformed into an array of Victorian era locations you’ll need to scour for clues. The solution, however, may be far from elementary…
Details: Until 23rd January | Babel Studios, Patshull Road, NW5 2LB | £28
It’s time to feel the Burns – this year’s celebrations of the Scottish bard include a ceilidh that ‘rips up the rule book’; fine Scottish fare; whisky tastings; poetry readings; and even a little live piping… See what’s on
Stand Up For Mental Health
With Five Points Brewing on tap and ACE Pizza in the kitchens, Hackney’s Pembury Tavern is already a pretty good place to spend a rainy January evening. But every last Wednesday of the month they also stage stand-up comedy nights, and they’re kicking off 2022 with a charity evening hosted by Sean McLoughlin and headlined by Sarah Keyworth, with a host of other rib-tickling talent in tow.
Details: 26th January | The Pembury Tavern, 90 Amhurst Road, E8 1JH | £15 inc. free pint
An Evening with Daisy May Cooper
Daisy May Cooper is regularly described as one of the most relatable women in the world – which might sound like an odd thing to say about a RADA graduate, award-winning actor and writer of one of the most popular BBC series this century, until you hear that she accepted her BAFTA barefoot, and wearing a full-length Swindon Town FC gown. She’s just written her memoirs – which even at the tender age of 35 is already full of certifiably hilarious anecdotes – and she’ll be reading some of them in person at the Southbank Centre this month.
Details: 27th January | Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, SE1 8XX | £23 – 40 (all inc. a copy of the book)
If you’re going to wander round the perfectly preserved townhouse of an eccentric Georgian-era architect – complete with ancient Egyptian sarcophagus, moving walls and a hermit’s hideaway – you may as well do it after-hours, by candlelight, with a glass of wine in hand. READ MORE
Details: 28th January | 13 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, London, WC2A 3BP | £25
For The Culture: Celebrations of Blackness
The Lyric Hammersmith is capping off the month with a three day festival devoted to Black culture. They’ve got some incredible headliners involved, including poet Lemn Sissay; cabaret and drag performer Le Gateau Chocolat; platinum-selling musician Shingai; and podcasters 90’s Baby Show, who’ll all be accompanied by a plethora of special events, discussions, gigs, parties and more.
Details: 28th – 30th January | Lyric Hammersmith Theatre, Lyric Square, King Street, London W6 0QL
Take A Wintry Walk Through London
Here be some excellent strolls to take around our fair city, with quite a few geared around taking in some festive sights before they disappear for another year (winter lights, Christmassy markets, mulled wine, etc.). And we’ve handily organised them by area, too. Go on a walkabout
Catch an Exhibition
Insert a little culture into your calendar with our guide to London’s top exhibitions, which this month includes a free display of new work by the great Kehinde Wiley; an appearance from the roaming Museum of Youth Culture; a look back on the past 70 years of British-Caribbean art; and your last chance to see some rediscovered Hokusai sketches… See what’s on
Norma’s Vegan Supper Club
Giving you a leg-up to help you out with whatever cleaner living resolution you’ve made for January (mostly by making it delicious), Norma’s first supper club of the year will be an all-vegan, five course feast. There’ll be bruschetta, violet artichokes, chickpea & romanesco stew, warm caponata, pomegranate panna cotta, and more. And it’s all paired with vegan wines, too.
Details: 11th January | 8 Charlotte Street, Fitzrovia, W1T 2LS | £75pp
You’ll find Kitchen Theory in an old Victorian warehouse loft, where they serve up ten-course multi-sensory tasting menus that incorporate audio, lighting, table projections, aromas, and thankfully some actual food too. There are only a dozen diners every night, and it’s not exactly cheap – but it’s a pretty unique experience…
Details: January 15th, 28th, 29th | Kitchen Theory, Alston Works, Unit 9A, Falkland Road, EN5 4LG | £190
Supa Ya Ramen’s Guest Series
Wilfully ignoring the old ‘too many cooks’ adage, Luke Findlay’s inviting a host of guest chefs to join him in the kitchens at his Kingsland Road noodle shop to kick off the year. And when the cooks are this talented, there’s no way that broth’s getting spoiled – he’ll be joined by chefs from Black Axe Mangal, Mystic Borek, Ling Lings, and more… READ MORE
Details: From January 16th | 499 Kingsland Road, E8 4AU | £30pp, BYOB
Vegetarian Supper Club at Kricket
India has the largest population of vegetarians in the world, as well as some of the best food in the world, so it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that they also produce some of the best vegetarian food in the world. And for one night this month, Kricket White City is going to go all-in on it. Expect Expect dishes such as Jerusalem artichoke & beetroot chaat, salsify & leek pakora, whipped paneer, and some Aloo gobi with pickled cauliflower & curry leaf brown butter.
Details: 20th January | 101 Wood Lane, W12 7FR | £45pp
The MindFULL Supper Club
If you want to heavily lean into the fresh start that the new year provides, then you should take a gander at the MindFULL Supper Club. It’s run by Lily Silverton, a journalist, podcaster, and “mindset coach” who’s going to set you up with a Goal Setting Workshop before you dive into a three course meal from Wild by Tart. Just try not to make one of your goals ‘eating less’.
Details: 25th January | 3-4 Eccleston Yards, London, SW1W 9AZ | £75-£95
Bettina Campolucci Bordi at Papermill Studios
Plant based chef Bettina Campolucci Bordi is going to help keep both you and your wallet healthy this month with a pop up supper club in Papermill Studios. You’ll get a welcome drink, snacks, starters, mains, dessert, and a goodie bag with half a dozen bits and bobs that you can use to make your own meal at home, too. And it’ll only set you back £35 a pop.
Details: 27th January | Papermill Studios, 9 City Garden Row, N18 DW | £35pp
Carousel’s January Residencies
Carousel have been busy christening their all new space in Fitzrovia with a series of excellent chef residencies, and the new year doesn’t seem to be changing that. You can expect the likes of Dimitrios Moudios from Ernst in Berlin (who’ll be serving up a 15-course tasting menu), Julie Caute from Dame Jean in Paris (who’s planning some highly inventive Franco-Asian dishes), and Pablo Lagrange from La Textile in Barcelona, back for his third innings of extremely creative Spanish flavours.
Details: Throughout January | 19-23 Charlotte Street, Fitzrovia, W1T 1RL
Four Corners at Rondo La Cave
These glorious slabs of pizza are the work of Detroit-style dough-spinners Four Corners. They’re settling in for the next couple of months at Rondo La Cave, the subterranean natural wine bar in Holborn that’s designed to host an ever-changing series of residencies in its kitchens. They’ve teamed up with an International Pizza Consultant, Anthony Falco, to create toppings like the Vodka Meatball (meatballs, vodka sauce, parmigiano) and the Beef & Onions (smoked entrecote, white onions and pomegranate molasses), which you’ll be able to wash down with those hand-picked bottles from small-scale growers.
Details: Until March | Rondo La Cave (underneath The Hoxton), 199-206 High Holborn, WC1V 7BD | Book here
The Gut x The Petersham
Anna Boglione has a very impressive Gut. It’s a lifestyle guide that encourages good microbial health, and she’s going to be pouring her work into a new menu at The Petersham in Covent Garden this month. He aim is help people ‘reset’ their body after a festive season of indulgence, and apparently that can be achieved by eating the likes of wild mushroom & miso broth; artichoke ala Romana; and lemon & matcha pavlova.
Details: Throughout January | The Petersham, Floral Court, WC2E 8JD | £40 (+ optional £15 tea pairing)
If the festive period has had its usual effect on your waistband, then you might just decide to lean into it – and there are worse places to do that than The Cheese Bar in Camden, who are bringing back Fondue Thursdays for the winter months. Every week they’ll be serving their set menu of three British cheese starters, fondue and a side for £23pp – or for a couple of quid more, you can plump for that month’s special restaurant collab fondue. January sees a collaboration with Burritos Machete…
Details: Thursdays throughout January | The Cheese Bar, Unit 93-94 Camden Stables Market, London NW1 8AH | £23/25
The Raclette Bar x The Secret Winter Garden
Push past the fur coats hanging up in the old wardrobe at The Regent in Balham, and instead of finding a frostbitten land of perennial winter overseen by a malevolent witch, you’ll find a perfectly charming winter retreat with igloos, a heated terrace under a canopy of ivy and twinkly lights, and a pop up from The Raclette Bar – who are serving melted cheese, grill-your-own veggies and Alpine meats, and bottomless sides of fries, pickles, potatoes and more…
Details: Open weekdays from 5pm, weekends from 11am | The Regent, 21 Chestnut Grove, Balham, London SW12 8JB | Book here, menu £27pp
A series of Studio 54-inspired supperclubs in a Leyton warehouse, brought to you by the good people behind The Jellied Eel pop ups and realised through a dazzling combination of retro props and furnishings; free Champagne; fondue; live musicians and circus performers. And a 1970s caravan slap-bang in the middle of the room, that’s available for private hire. READ MORE
Details: Thurs-Sun until 30th January | Patchworks, 258 Church Road, London, E10 7JQ | £34-85
Ling Ling’s at The Gun Well St
The Modern Chinese-Vietnamese outfit has landed at The Gun E9, and this time (alongside their ever-changing menu of small plates) they’re running special collab dinners with other pop up kitchens and serving up Asian-inspired Sunday roasts every week.
Details: Open Wed-Sun | The Gun, 235 Well St, London E9 6RG | Book here
For those who haven’t experienced it yet, JOY is a plant shop in Marylebone. During the day, that is. On Thursday evenings however, super-chef Stevie Parle hosts intimate supper clubs for a small crowd of 30, where – nestled among that tangle of leaves – you can dine on one-off, specially-devised menus put together with whatever’s fresh and good that week. It’s all sourced with care, keeping seasonality and sustainability in mind – some of the veg comes from Stevie’s own garden, and the burrata’s from Acton. And, for more casual dining, they also serve a more relaxed café-style menu during the day, which recently included dishes like aubergine caponata, and sherry-cooked clams with guanciale and chickpeas… READ MORE
Details: Throughout January | 94 Marylebone High Street, London W1U 4RG
Filthy Buns (aka John & Debs) have extended their residency at Dalston’s 3 Compasses, where they’re cooking up ludicrously large, jaw-dislocating burgers. They’re all made with 45 day dry-aged beef from The Ginger Pig butchers, sandwiched in between brioche buns with outrageous bedfollows: this here is the Millionaire Short Rib, boosting that beef patty with beer-braised short rib, Swiss cheese & beer BBQ glaze, smoky gravy mayo and Biscoffy peanut butter.
Details: Open for dinner daily, plus lunch on weekends | The Three Compasses, 99 Dalston Lane, E8 1NH | Book here
Calling your restaurant Tacos Padre might sound like a pretty big claim. But when you’ve worked at Mexico City’s Pujol – currently ranked 12th on the World’s 50 Best list – it’s probably a fair one to make. After years of pop ups around the world, Nick Fitzgerald’s taqueria has landed a relatively permanent home in Borough Market Kitchen. Towards the end of the week, the festoon lighting fires up and the kitchen starts plating up beef short rib, chicken asado and cauliflower ‘al pastor’ tacos, alongside frozen margaritas and guest dishes like Michelada oysters.
Details: Taqueria Sat 12-5pm, dinner Thurs-Sat 6.30-10pm | The Borough Market Kitchen, Winchester Walk, Jubilee Place, SE1 5AG | Book here
Saicho x Coupe
Coupe, the English sparkling wine bar at The Gantry hotel, has found an interesting way to reshape itself for dry January – they’ve invited in the folks from Saicho sparkling tea to show off their alcohol-free wares for the month. They’ve bussed in a former Blind Pig barkeep to mix up some elegant cocktails for them, using a base of effervescent Darjeeling, Hojicha, Jasmine, and their fancy sounding ‘Eight Immortals’ tea.
Details: 10th January – 7th February | The Gantry, 40 Celebration Avenue, Stratford, E20 1DB
Whisky Tasting aboard the Golden Hinde
If getting a little tipsy reminds you at all of being aboad a ship, then prepare to have that experience either doubled or somehow cancelled out. Because in honour of Burns Night, the The Scotch Malt Whisky Society have decided to create a pop up whisky tasting experience aboard the Golden Hinde. You’ll get to sample from the various malt whisky at stations positioned in different areas of our Tudor galleon, all while hearing the dulcet tones of bagpiper Hector Munro.
Details: 24th January | The Golden Hinde, Cathedral Street, SE1 9DE | £65
The Winter Bar at Sky Garden
Sky Garden already has one of the best views over the city, and now it’s going to be home to some of the best sound too, thanks to live music from live bands & DJS playing almost every day of the week, all month long. It’s happening at their Winter Garden pop up, which involves a ski-chalet styled bar, fir tree foliage, and a whole lot of fairy lights.
Details: Tues-Sat Until February 5th | Sky Garden, 20 Fenchurch Street, EC3M 8AF | £12-£16
Billy Bonker & The Cocktail Factory
We’ve all heard of Billy Bonker, who makes the finest cocktails in all the land. And anyone lucky enough to receive a Golden Packet (it looks an awful lot like a ticket) will get a theatrical tour of his cocktail factory, complete with plenty of creative drinks, and army of Lumpy Dumpies, and a visit from the “conniving, dastardly and loose-moraled” Horatio Slutworth…
Details: Throughout January | Bonkers Bar, 79 Stoke Newington Road, Dalston, N16 8AD | £35
Veuve Clicquot Le Tram
Veuve Clicquot’s retro, funicular-shaped pop-up bar has returned to Selfridges. A trampagne bar, if you will. You can get it here in all kinds of interesting serves – including an edition designed to be enjoyed over ice with a red pepper garnish – as well as a couple of signature Champagne cocktails, which you can enjoy propped up at the bar lining the tram’s windows, or inside the special listening booth lounge at the front, where you can play your own favourite song through retro speakers.
Details: Open daily until end of January 2022 | Selfridges, 400 Oxford Street, London, W1A 1AB | Walk-in
Coravin Wine & Bubbles Bar
So, this entire pop up is basically one big advertisement for the fancy Coravin machines that keep wine fresh after the bottle has been opened. But that’s not exactly a terrible thing, considering that you can get a whole load of excellent wines by the glass here, that you might otherwise have ever gotten the chance to sample. In fact, there’ll be 300 types of vino available by the glass (princes range from £9 to, er, £850) with 50 champagnes & sparkling wines that stay effervescent long after the cork is gone. So, it might be worth popping in.
Details: Open Tues-Sat throughout January | 4-7 Lancashire Court, London W1S 1EY | Book here
Alice in Winterland
The Queen of Hoxton usually does something spectacular with its rooftop space each season, but this time they’ve really gone down the rabbit hole. The entire building is wearing an ‘Alice In Winterland’ themed hat, with Cheshire Cats, teacup cocktails, shisha pipes, and random little shot bottles that say ‘drink me’ on them… READ MORE
Details: Open daily throughout January | The Queen of Hoxton, 1 Curtain Rd, EC2A 3JX | Book here
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