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|Address:||Covent Garden Hotel, 10 Monmouth Street, London WC2H 9HB|
|Tel:||020 3589 3963|
|Wine: £24.00||Champagne: £56.00|
|Opening Hours:||Mon-Sat 7am-11pm Sun 8am-10.30pm|
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I owe a debt of gratitude to the Covent Garden Hotel bar (can't comment on the food I'm afraid). I first visited a couple of years ago on a first date. It had not got off to a very good start. The date in question was traipsing me round Seven Dials trying to find a bar he had been to that served supposedly amazing Espresso Martinis but he couldn't find it. I cannot state emphatically enough just how much I HATE faffing: why can't people check where they are going before they (almost) get there? Cutting his losses he suggested we duck into the bar at Covent Garden Hotel. Good call. We sat up at the silvery bar on a fairly quiet Sunday afternoon and mulled over the long and intriguing list of cocktails which got conversation flowing as the choice is quite mind boggling: Passion and Ginger Caipirinha? Rhubarb Fizz? I would have tried any (and all) of them. The atmosphere was perfect with professional but friendly bar staff, a good view out of the windows, elegant modern/traditional styling, diners and casual bar lingerers hanging out in the same space. I mistook it for part of the Soho House Group as it's got that “we're cool but kind of laid back about it” vibe. As we sipped our delicious concoctions (mine a memorable Lychee and Elderflower Classic) my initial bewilderment/irritation slipped away. To cut a long story short, that first date is now my husband. We went back recently for a pre-dinner drink and can confirm that the atmosphere, buzzing on a Tuesday evening, was still fabulous and the cocktails (a Flying Fig and a Vanilla Pear) still worth every penny (all 1200 of them). There are plenty of places serving up decent cocktails these days but this is, in my biased opinion, one of the best. The bar the first date/husband was trying to find, incidentally, was at Kopapa, a stone's throw away. We have been subsequently and sadly report that the amazing Espresso Martinis are not to my taste. Things could have turned out so differently.