Given that it’s billed as ‘London’s first absinthe bar’, you might reasonably expect cheeky Can-can girls & lecherous libertines up for a bit of the old ooh-la-la in this wine-red & green basement lounge. However, on a recent visit, the vibe was about as saucy as a soirée with a Salzburg pensioners’ choir. Liven up proceedings with absinthe La Clandestine (made to an original Swiss recipe) served in traditional style with a slotted spoon, sugar lump & iced water drizzled from an art-nouveau glass fountain. If that sounds too hardcore, risk death in the afternoon (Champagne & absinthe) or morning-glory fizz (whisky, absinthe, egg white, bitters & soda) from a terse list that would benefit from some more interesting mixes. The lack of signage outside & a rather unconvincing bartender also suggest that the house cocktail here should, perhaps, be renamed ‘passing whim’.
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