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Low Holidays

Today is the longest day of the year.

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All around the country, pagan-identifying types are tuning bare-breasted towards their nearest haul of ancient stones. The ground around Stone Henge will creak under the weight of flashers and dogging enthusiasts expunging ritual joy at the altar of the saggy boob and wonky dong. The Waitrose at Fleet Service station - positioned perniciously before turning into the tailbacks of the A303 - will see a year’s worth of trade between here and Glastonbury and back again. Pull up the effigies! Burn Farage! Burn BoJO! Just don’t forget the mini Molten Mowbray pork pies.

Meanwhile, downstairs at 411 Mare Street, we can now sing to a different tune. The longest day marks several clear delineations. The solstice is the official start of summer so, on cue, we’ll have a new menu to show off from tonight. Bruised banana rum old fashioned with a customary dose of CBD, wiccan Manhattans, elegiac cucumber gimlets, tiki agave drinks, cereal milk julep floats and little-gay egg nogs will abound for the next 3 months. Strong drinks for summer are back. We can also rejoice, as basement dwellers, that the days will now start receding, serving our selfish purpose. YAY darkness!

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We’ll have fun little feedback sheets for the first weekend so if you get down to try the new bits tonight and can fathom something productive we’ll grant you a tasty cut off your bill.



❀ Spring ‣ Menu ❁

Out with the old and in with the new. The Spring equinox always feels somewhat cleansing; just as winter’s drawn on that little bit too long and the festive season is a vanquishing speck on an expandingly-bleak horizon. Suddenly, day matches night and the weight lifts a touch. It’s only going one way from here.

As ever, we try to reflect this gentle optimism in what little way we can through our shifting drinks selections. Out with those robust, deep flavours and earthy spice, in with lighter strokes: fresh mint and lemongrass, violet and forsythia syrup (it’s purple and has CBD in - woof), grappa!

On the list we’ve got a blended mezcal and reposado Sazerac; sweet and smoky with a soft verdant spice. A Boulevardier with the best - independently of each other - amaro and rosso vermouth we’ve ever tasted (Argala’s Amaro Alpino and Discarded vermouth in case you’re wondering). An armagnac or Sidecar-type sour with cured lemon paste, dubbed the ‘Uber XL’.

For the highball it’s our first ever go at a Collins with a distinctly Turkish twist melding sumac and grapefruit. That purple CBD syrup marries up to Reyka vodka and Birds botanical spirit in the crushed ice fix that is and only could be ‘Purple Drank’. Then to finish we sorta-made-our-own white creme de menthe by infusing ume sake with mint which pairs with that Domus grappa for a palette cleansing Stinger to finish.

The list in full starts this evening and will be available to taste up until the summer solstice (or thereabouts) when we’ll all dress-up like druids and wind-down for summer. If you read this and come down tonight (Thursday March 21st) ask the bartender when do the clocks go forwards? and we’ll give you something free to try. Call that an Easter egg for following us this far!

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Jordan McGregor ~ opening

Tonight sees the opening of our latest exhibit by Canadian photographer Jordan McGregor, curated by our own Desirée Balma.

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Des took some time last week to ask Jordan a few questions about the selected works, his background, drawn to B&W prints, studying up in Vancouver (the Canadian riviera!), passing through London and the complexion of peripatetic photographer vs cityscapes. You can read the interview below,

The prints will be available to buy tonight up at the bar and listed here in the store from tomorrow.

Doors 6 – 11 pm. Macca on tunes ⍡

Who are you and what do you do?

Hey, my name is Jordan McGregor, I’m from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada and currently reside in Toronto, Ontario. I’m a photographer who shoots fine art and street photography.

When & where did you get into B+W photography?

I got into shooting B&W street photography about half way through my program, studying digital photography in Vancouver, BC, in 2017. I was drawn to B&W because I found the simplicity of it allowed the viewer to focus more on the images composition and subject matter, rather than bold or distracting colors and gave my images a timeless feel.

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Did you take into account the models background, values, and personality while taking their portraits ?

When I’m out on the streets or in public looking for photos, almost all of my images are reactionary. I rarely stop on one street corner or area and wait out images. I continuously move and look for scenes that interest me and react as they unfold. So I never really consider much about the subject before taking the photo. If something, or someone, or the light catches my eye, I snap a photo.

Do you switch mindsets when you’re taking pictures in other countries?

That mostly depends on the country and their culture and norms I suppose. In some countries nobody bats an eye when you’re snapping a photo of them on the street and in other places people can be less receptive to it and don’t want to be photographed in public. I found London very easy to shoot street in, because most of the time it’s so busy and everyone is in such a rush that no one even notices you taking their photo.

What’s the most fascinating thing you can think of about london?

I think it’s diversity and history are fascinating. The history of the buildings and places and the stories that go along with them, and the city’s wide range of cultures and people make it an endlessly interesting city to photograph in.

Why did you cut your 2 year visa short?

I cut my visa short because as great of a city as London can be, it’s also a tough city to live in and after living in 4 different cities in 4 years, I wanted some more stability in my life and chose to move back to Canada.

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Honey & Ginger CBD Syrup now in 'store'

Been a long time coming…

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Our signature syrup from the Autumn drew a fair old amount of hype, so now we’ve bottled it up and made it available to you. Great in cocktails (obviously) with sprits and in hot drinks (we’ve been sipping recently with our lemon zinger kombucha tea). Also works wonderfully as a flavour-enhancing food supplement. Add one or two tablespoons to your recipes and away you go :)

⥽ Special offer on the first batch pre-order for early subscribers [30% off] ships out Monday ⥼

VISIT THE STORE HERE

Valentine's Flip

Is it too early to mention the ‘V’ word?

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Ah, Valentines. The most cursed & contrived of all the holidays. Couples dotingly gazing across each other eyes; yearning Lady, horny Tramp, unbroken spaghetti. ‘Oh but our love is special and unique’ and… shared with two dozen other pairings clinking and slurping and carefully concealing unruly gas.

Maybe you’ll get laid tonight if you go for the oysters and bellini lovers-combo starter? A sparkly heart-shaped flan could seal the deal? Should we stay for the aphrodisiacs coffee?

It blows on our side too. Flipping tables for pairs. Often awkward service. Nonsense specials. People staying too long, leaving too soon. is it busy enough to be a vibe but quiet enough to be intimate? No spark, no fun. Bring In The Singles.

This year we’re going singles only. We’ll throw in some solid party-starters courtesy of our pals at Tito’s Vodka (plug) & our CBD kitchen (plug 2); mix with a group of up-for-it people, loud music, some off-kilter conversation starters and we have the tonic for a good night out.

Interested? ~ sign up below to bypass our normal bookings procedure and we’ll send you full details the week before:

13.02.19 NB ~ due to excessive demand this list is now full to women and we have a spots only left for men!

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