Hold on to your hats people – London Cocktail Week is back! That means seven fun-fuelled, drinks-centric days, plus of course an extra serving of education. It starts on 1st October, and anyone with a pass (grab yours here) can join in the  jam-packed agenda! But, won’t lie, it can be a bit overwhelming deciding just what to do, so we’ve given you the low-down on seven reasons why London Cocktail Week 2018 is going to ROCK!

The Cocktail Village

This year the Cocktail Village is bigger and better than ever, with three unique spaces to enjoy cocktail culture at its best. Located in Brick Lane, your pass gains you entrance to this buzzing collection of pop-up bars and immersive spaces, each offering a delicious array of unique serves.

Divided into two spaces, the first in Back Yard Market hosts the likes of  The Monkey Jungle from Monkey 47, The Talisker Voyager boat bar and the St~Germain Living Wall. There’s also The House of Peroni Bar where some of the top bartending talent in the UK will be showcasing their Aperitivo Restyled By Peroni menu, along with Italian cicchetti. We’re also buzzing for the Tia Maria Coffee Project with Espresso Martinis on draft and an array of coffee cocktails.

The second space in Brick Lane Yard is home to the Bulleit Bourbon Truck, Fords Gin Martins and Oysters with E8 Fish and the Ketel One vodka Kitchen. Don’t miss the Virgin Atlantic Pop-up Clubhouse with cocktail ‘flights’ from some of the best bars and bartenders in the world.

The Cocktail Village is open 12pm-11pm Weds 3rd-Saturday 6th, and 12pm-7pm Sunday 7th

Brick Lane (entry via Back Yard Market)
FREE ENTRY with your Festival Pass (can be purchased on the door).


Awesome spirit collaborations

There are some very exciting spirit collaborations popping up all over the city during the week. Grand Marnier teams up with Oriole bar on Tuesday and Wednesday to bring ‘‘A Touch Of Rouge’. Expect contemporary dance from The Divine Company as well as deliciously eccentric cocktails that channel the vibrancy of La Belle Époque era. We’re also excited for a night of whisky delights at Mr Fogg’s, when Talisker presents Sojourn in Skye. Guests can sit back and sip on Talisker whisky libations as they enjoy the live Ceilidh band, and even nibble on some Scottish delicacies. For those who want to take it a little easier on the Tuesday, sign up to the guest list to join non-alcoholic ‘spirit’ Seedlip at Coya Mayfair. Serving up free No & Low ABV cocktails alongside COYA’s new vegan menu it’s perfect for those not drinking, or those in need of an alcohol-free evening.

A Touch of Rouge at Oriole, Tuesday 2nd and Wednesday 3rd October, 6pm – late | www.oriolebar.com | Bookings advised 

Sojourn in Skye, Wednesday 3rd October | mr-foggs.com/mr-foggs-residence/

Seedlip at Coya Mayfair, Tuesday 2nd, 5-8pm | Free to attend, email ukevents@seedlipdrinks.com to sign up to the guestlist. 


Some of the best bars from around the world arrive in London!

One of the most exciting things about London Cocktail Week is getting to immerse ourselves in the global cocktail community and check out mixology maestros from around the world who are landing on our fair shores, just for the week. Revered New York watering hole BlackTail (above) will be popping up at sleek and sophisticate Bloomsbury Club Bar on Friday, serving up bespoke creations that give an authentic taste of the ‘lush life’. Licoreria Limantour will be bringing all the vibrancy of Mexico City to Swift on Monday, with an afternoon of special cocktails and Mexican aperitivos such as grilled oysters. Head to France via Experimental Cocktail Club when Le Syndicat bar arrive with their spellbinding drinks and a taste of urban Paris, and don’t forget to hot foot it to Madison rooftop bar, where you can catch the wonderful Broken Shaker pop-up bringing a taste of chilled Miami vibes to St Pauls.

BlackTail x Bloomsbury Club Bar, Friday 5th from 6pm | thebloomsburyclub.com/

Swift x Licoreria Limantour, 1st October | Mexican Aperitivos | 1.30pm –  4pm | www.barswift.com/

Madison rooftop x Broken Shaker, 2nd to 5th October | www.madisonlondon.net/


There’s heaps of immersive fun to be had

A Porn Star Martini Townhouse complete with a Passion Fruit Kaleidoscope, a misty vanilla forest, and a bubble filled maze, all culminating in an Absolut Vodka bar? It’s arriving in Soho! A Kyro sauna for tutored tasting of rye spirits and, er, naked bartenders? Check out the Cocktail Village. A calming space perfect for low ABV cocktails, lighter drinks, talks on mindfulness from Healthy Hospo and a gorgeous glimmering light instillation? Head to The Light House. There’s a ton of interactive and immersive fun to be found all over the city.

Absolut Porn Star Martini Townhouse, from 6:30pm, Wednesday 3 October

Kyro Sauna, The Boiler House, Cocktail Village

The Light House, Monday 1st – Sat 6th | Tickets cost £12 for two cocktails and entry to the instillation drinkup.london/events/20718/the-light-house/


Parties galore!

If you’re in the mood to let your hair down, there are lots of opportunities during London Cocktail Week. Why not head to one of the three Piscoteque parties happening around the city, where you can get into the Latin groove with Pisco! Waqar pisco cocktails and tasty light bites (alongside lots of dancing, naturally). Then, on Saturday, Nine Lives bar and Bulleit Bourbon are closing down Holyrood Street to throw the people of London the ultimate New York-style block party. Get your dancing shoes on.

Piscoteque | 4th October – Apples & Pears | 5th October – Looking Glass Cocktail Club | 7th October – Resident of Paradise Row

Nine Lives Bar and Bulleit Bourbon street party | Saturday 6th 3pm – 10pm

TONS of cocktails for only £6!

Even if you can’t head to any of the events or even the Cocktail Village, then fear not – because there’s still ample chances to make the most of your Cocktail Week Pass! Bars and restaurants all over the city have created special £6 cocktails for you to enjoy. There’s this From Jerez to Clarendon from Aqua Nueva (above) (Ketel One Vodka, Pedro Ximenez Triana, lemon, cherry & lemon foam) – a sweet and sour mixture of sherry and lemon is the perfect aperitif or as a standalone drink. Head to Hutong for their Yang Fan (Rosemary infused Ketel One, Salerno liqueur, pink grapefruit juice, ginger, rosemary water) or perhaps the Olive Leaf Martini (Beefeater gin, olive leaf vermouth and olive) from newly opened Gazelle Bar. We’ve made a note to head to Coal Shed for The Purple Dress cocktail – a concoction between the classic Rye Whiskey and Umeshu Japanese Plum Liqueur that sounds the perfect mix to warm us on the start of autumn!


Tequila and Mezcal Fest caps off the weekend 

You started hard on Monday, and you’re thinking perhaps you can relax a little more come the weekend… but there’s no way you want to miss Tequila & Mezcal Fest. Returning for the fifth year, it’s Europe’s biggest agave extravaganza. There’ll be delicious Mexican street food twists prepared by Taqueria, Peyotito and Café Pacifico, perfect for soaking up all those cocktails. These come courtesy of four bars that have teamed up with premium tequila brands to make signature serves including a wide variety of Margaritas and Palomas – keep an eye out for Ella Canta x 1800 and MNKY HSE x Don Julio & Casamigos. Speaking of Casamigos, there’ll be a unique opportunity to try George Clooney’s brand new Mezcal in the luxury tequila lounge, and Patrón is hosting a ‘Tequila Experience’ with a Perfectionists Cocktail bar, Fever-Tree Tonic and Patrón cocktail bar with a live artist’s showcase. Phew – let’s just say we recommend keeping the following week relatively free!

October 5th, 6th and 7th | www.tequilafest.co.uk/

Compiled and written by Rebecca Milford

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