The first European link from an upmarket Indian hotel chain, LaLit London occupies a landmark arts & crafts building near Tower Bridge. The brick edifice once housed St Olave’s School, hence the name of its compact lounge bar. Decor is pretty mundane – prosaic artwork, cumin-tone club chairs on pale parquet – but the warm welcome and attentive service are memorable. So too, the long list of modern Indian cocktails, including Kama Sutra (a bittersweet orange brandy, pineapple and date fix), Mumbai Manhattan (with fennel seeds) and a holy basil-enhanced Delhi Daiquiri. Bar snacks also entice: the likes of southern Indian-style calamari, or quail Scotch egg with tangy Bengali mustard mayo. In summer, drinks can be enjoyed on the terrace. Detention in The Headmaster’s Room, with its opulent mother-of-pearl ceiling and stone fireplace, is hardly punishment when you can order prime single malts (26-year-old Glenfiddich), craft ales (Thornbridge Jaipur) or afternoon tea.
020 3765 0000
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