Hattie Lloyd 23/12/21
When it comes to recreating your favourite bars and restaurants at home, there are places that deliver…
…and there are places that deliver.
And if you’re considering getting in a meal kit over the festive season – or to banish the January blues – you’re going to want to treat yourself to something that gives you the full experience. Something that makes you want to dress up, light some candles and get out the good china. So what follows here is a list of excellent London bars and restaurants where you can not only feast on magnificent food and drink, but bring a little of the original setting into your home, too, with curated playlists, crockery and more…
Dishoom is your go-to for the entirety of New Year’s. You can order a meal kit for a slap-up NYE feast – either a biryani banquet, or a hand-picked selection of their top dishes – and then recreate their celebrated bacon naan the morning after (with a Bloody Mary or Marmalade Mimosa in tow). Plus, you can enjoy it all alongside their iconic Slip Disc soundtrack and extended Spotify playlist, bringing you the distinctive grooves of 1960s bands weaving together Indian and British pop styles.
Order a meal kit | Load up the playlist or order the LP
We’ll start by saying that these boxes have sold out for Christmas and New Year’s delivery. But this could be a very sound investment for any potential January circuit-breakers: Hawksmoor are hawking their classic, dictionary-thick cuts of steak (we’re talking porterhouse, T-bone, fillet, sirloin and chateaubriand) as well as their inimitable roasts, each of which arrive with a full complement of fantastic sides, vino, and a cocktail digestif. They’ve even recorded masterclass videos to help you nail restaurant-quality cooking at home.
Order a meal kit | Load up the playlists: Hawksmoor at Home I and II, Sunday Roasts
Decatur’s Louisiana-inspired DIY shrimp boils were one of the saving graces of lockdown last year, and they’re still sending them out every Friday. Book now for a January delivery slot, and they’ll lavish you with chargrilled oysters, pre-mixed sazeracs and add-ons like langoustine and native lobster – best enjoyed alongside their soundtrack of NOLA blues and soul.
Order a meal kit | Load up the playlist
The star of Smokestak’s meal kits is their 15-hour, hickory wood-smoked beef brisket, which comes with sideshows like whipped cod’s roe and flatbread; gochujang chicken wings; smoked dripping chips; and honeycomb & chocolate mousse. Best of all, you can accompany it with fizz from St. John and a laid-back electronica soundtrack.
Hakkasan’s Michelin-starred Cantonese cooking is available for delivery across most of London, alongside vintage wines and Champagne from their cellars. But if you really want to push the boat out, you can plump for the ‘Hosted by Hakkasan’ package, tailored entirely to you, which includes printed menus and place settings, flower arrangements and even incense to help set the scene.
Ambassador General Store is the meal kit platform by the people behind Brigadiers, Gymkhana and Trishna. You can order curated feasts of gold leaf-garnished lamb raan and tandoori chicken, or build your own banquet of saffron pilau, buttery smooth dal maharani and twinkling silver-topped gulab jamun (syrupy doughnuts) to feast on while bopping to a mix of soul, 90s R&B and bhangra-hip-hop mash-ups.
El Pastor‘s adding a fifth location to its family of restaurants: your place. The taco party for two comes with their heritage Mexican corn tortillas and slow-braised meats, with the option to load up with tuna and chicken tinga tostadas; refried beans; and guacamole with pork crackling for dipping.
And to drink…
Speakeasy at Home
Speakeasy at Home brings you bottled cocktails from that mighty triumvirate of London cocktail bars: Nightjar, Oriole and Swift. You can order pouches of their critically acclaimed concoctions, or sign up for a monthly subscription. And while recreating the ‘hidden entrance’ aspect of some of those bars might be tricky in your own house, you can add atmosphere by splashing out on their glassware or listening to their special playlists, guest curated each month by one of their regular live bands.
Order drinks | Load up the playlist
Top Cuvée‘s retail arm, Shop Cuvée, has a fleet of cyclists ready to hand-deliver bottles of natural and organic wines, cocktails (from the likes of Three Sheets and the East London Liquor Co) and fancy pantry bits & condiments. And they’re also spoiling you with a decadent 10 playlists to check out, too.
Some bars are just inextricably linked with their music, and Satan’s Whiskers is one of them. The Bethnal Green drinking den has been soundtracking its stellar cocktails with 80s & 90s hip hop since day one, and now you can get the whole experience in your own home. Minus the taxidermied animals, presumably.
Order drinks | Load up the playlist | Order scented candles
As a 1940s-themed bar, Cahoots is well accustomed to issuing emergency rations. You can get one of five fine tipples through your letterbox (containing two servings), or get the whole lot with their SIP kit – they all come with retro Cahoots coasters, emergency biscuits, garnishes, video walk-throughs to create the perfect serve and a suitably ’40s playlist to add some Blitz spirit to your spirits.
Fittingly, Homeboy’s coming to your home. Islington’s Irish drinking den is shipping out bottled classics like the Session Negroni and Old Fashioned, alongside innovative signatures like the Corn & Oil, with Cuban rum, velvet falernum and bitters. And you can enjoy them all with a slice of classic 90s R&B and hip-hop.
Order drinks | Load up the playlist
Looking for festive things to do outdoors? Take a look at these ice rinks and light trails…
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