SquareMeal Review of
South Ken’s economic refugees mingle with Francophile Chelsea chaps and their belles at this understated bar set in the basement of patriotically Gallic Brasserie Gustave. Snug, formal surrounds set the tone for a list of cocktails entitled ‘les libertins’ that reference towering French giants of a literary persuasion: Guy de Maupassant is a Rémy Martin sour; Arthur Rimbaud mixes Russian Standard vodka, apple, lime and pineapple, while Paul Verlaine comprises Diplôme gin, yellow Chartreuse, lemon, gomme and mint leaves misted with absinthe – the latter served from a traditional bar-top fountain. Bar food is the kind of stuff that would probably have found favour with Marie-Antoinette: caviar and Carlingford oysters in various guises – as nature intended, in Hendrick’s gin jelly or served ceviche-style with espelette pepper. Alternatively, simply pop in for a post-work pastis or a Kir Royale.