When The Pillars of Hercules pub – a mock-Tudor Edwardian landmark – closed in early 2018, Soho defenders feared the loss of another treasure to ruthless developers. Their concerns proved short-lived. Backed by bar behemoth Stonegate, co-owner Matt Fleming has rescued the old boy. Now ‘Hercules’, its sober interior has been tastefully updated: smart banquette in, squelchy swirl carpet out. Literary types have long frequented the place, but what past patrons Charles Dickens and Martin Amis would make of a ‘cocktail pub’ is moot. Wines, ales and the ubiquitous cheese and charcuterie boards now play second fiddle to pared-down fixes, pre-batched using a basement lab’s centrifuges, evaporators and other boffinry. Boys To The Yard (a gin, strawberry, quinine and cedarwood summer sparkler), and London Fields (a whisky, propolis, fig and caramel Old fashioned) are two to try from an absorbing, borderline-pricey, list. But will Hercules become a new pillar of Soho’s scene?
020 7437 1179
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