If you’re looking for a place that is proficient and efficient in what it does then the Hawksmoor Bar will be the perfect place for you to spend your evenings. The quality of the beverages and comfortable atmosphere along with charismatic bartenders lends a special and personal touch to the service. Here you can combine both dinner and drinks for an evening of socializing with friends.
Hawksmoor Bar, Spitalfields
In Three Words: Quality, Cool, Charismatic
The Lowdown: Mention the word ‘Hawksmoor’ and the usual result will be an almost Pavlovian reaction of salivating at the thought of a top quality steak dinner. Cocktail aficionados have just as much reason to get excited, since the sleek subterranean bar next door is gaining just as much kudos, and for good reason.
Open for two years now, the drinks menu is precise and concise, exhibiting a confidence that what it does, it does extremely well. There’s a focus on British influences, all using quality spirits and unusual spins on the classics – five ‘desert island drinks’ change monthly so there’s always something new to tempt your palate. It is evident the team behind the bar is incredibly skilled – despite the uber-cool vibe, there’s serious talent brewing, as shown by Hawksmoor being one of the final four nominations for the Best International Restaurant Bar award at Tales of the Cocktail this year. Don’t be surprised if the bartenders are the next big people on the scene.
Your Plus One: The gentleman’s-club-meets-trendy hotspot is perfect for an intimate date, or grab a group of pals and bundle into one of the booths. Friday nights are pretty lively, so bring a fun loving friend who wants a party atmosphere but doesn’t want to compromise for low quality drinks.
The Decor: There’s an element of Brooklyn-cool meets faded glamour which is absolutely spot on. Being underground, it’s quite shadowy, and dark woods and deep peacock-blue leather add to the sense of intimacy. Lamp and candlelight flicker off of beaten copper and the tarnished mirrors and exposed white tiles lend it a toughness that works well with the obvious quality of the fittings.
Cocktail Highlights: Our favourite was their signature Shaky Pete’s Ginger Brew – a fresh, frothy and fiery libation served in a glass tankard and created using gin, ginger, lemon and London Pride. The pang of ginger is contested superbly with the effervescing foam, with a clean finish from lemon and lager. Another not-to-be-missed is the Full Fat Old Fashioned – made using butter-infused bourbon and sugar; the rich amber liquid conjures tastes of popcorn and caramel.
Something to Soak Up the Booze: While the cocktail list showcases the best of British, the nibbles have an altogether more Asian twist which complement the drinks perfectly. The ribs were sticky with a delectable barbeque tang, while the chicken wings had a real spicy kick that filled the whole mouth. A great accompaniment is the cucumber salad – mint and coriander make for a refreshing oasis of green among the more meaty options.
Burning a Hole? The drinks are between £7.50 and £12.50, and assuredly worth every penny.
Overall: For anyone that considers Hawksmoor Spitalfields as merely a joint to grab a good rib eye – shame on you! Hawksmoor bar has definitely made its mark as being a class act in its own right; it’s cool and unpretentious, with amazing staff who are both knowledgeable and dedicated to ensure you have a good time.