There are plenty of places to get authentic English pub experience on this side of the Pond — but if you're already in England, why not experience the real thing? The Harp is one of the best places to do so. Located in Covent Garden not far from Trafalgar Square, this unpretentious spot offers everything you'd expect from an authentic pub, including a rich wooden bar, 10 hand pumps pouring real ales, a fine selection of real ciders, and a more relaxed, classically-appointed upstairs for more intimate conversation.
There are plenty of places in London to grab some Chinese food — but only one of them is in Europe's tallest building. Based on the Hong Kong restaurant of the same name, Hutong serves up a wide array of dishes that reflect the diverse regions and cuisines of Northern China, each as tasty and carefully prepared as the last. The cocktails are outstanding as well, but perhaps the most memorable thing about it is the view: thanks to its perch on the 33rd floor of The Shard, it offers some of the best restaurant views around.
It doesn't matter which side of the pond you're from — if you're looking for a taste of the US in the UK, Jackson & Rye is a solid pick. This new SoHo restaurant and bar features a sleek, inviting interior that recalls the golden age of cocktails, and a drink menu to match. On the food side of things, the all-day menu includes such comfort foods as cheeseburgers, fried chicken sandwiches, truffled mac & cheese, meatballs, and crabcakes, while brunch kicks things up with shrimp & grits and steak and eggs. Oh, and as the name suggests, they have quite the selection of ryes, as well. [via]
We've seen bars hidden behind a phone booth, and even behind a wall of kegs — but never one tucked away behind a wall in a basement restroom. Until now. PortSide Parlour is one of the most difficult to find bars in London Fields, tucked behind the wall of an unmarked bathroom in the basement of Off Broadway. Once inside, you'll find yourself in a richly furnished and appropriately dim space, filled with terrific music, and featuring a bar that serves 50 of the world's finest rums — thanks to a partnership with Jamaica's finest Rum Appleton Estate — and cocktails worthy of a secret rendezvous.
Take your concept of a normal store and throw it out the window, because none of them apply to LN-CC — aka the Late Night Chameleon Cafe. This Dalston shop is split up into individual rooms that feel straight out of a movie set, with a library, record store, event space, shoe/leather goods room, outerwear room, and private in-store bar included in the list of various nooks and crannies. The products are just as interesting as the store itself, with items from Comme des Garcons, Dita, Lanvin, Rick Owens, and Yohji Yamamoto among the offerings. Just don't expect to show up and start shopping — the store operates on an appointment-only basis.
Let's say you like some combination of bicycles, beer, coffee, and/or food. And let's say you're looking for somewhere to eat/drink/get your bike worked on. Say hello to Look Mum No Hands! Located in Barbican, this multi-purpose spot offers good coffee, local beers, tasty food, and bike repairs. In addition, it also boasts a projector that regularly plays cycling events, plenty of power sockets for gadget recharging, free Wi-Fi for said gadgets, and an energetic atmosphere that makes it a great place to hangout while that repair's being done. And if you're not in the neighborhood, don't fret — there's now a second location on Mare Street as well.
At most markets, you're lucky to find a handful of stands offering interesting handmade goods. At the Renegade Craft Fair, you'll find nothing but. Held every Summer and Winter in Austin, Brooklyn, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, and London — and with upcoming dates scheduled in all six cities — this curated independent craft marketplace features a huge array of goods from talented artisans, spanning everything from clothes and jewelry to furniture, lighting, and artwork. Food and drink will likely be on offer as well, so all you really need to bring is yourself — and your wallet.
They don't serve painstakingly made, eye poppingly priced cocktails. They don't have a beer list that runs longer than an average phone book. But what Sager + Wilde lacks, it makes up for in style and clear purpose. This corner bar has been completely remodeled, elevating the place of the original wood floor and brickwork, while adding details like a custom cast iron bar and retro light fixtures. And there's the wine list, a carefully curated selection of standout vintages from around the world, available by the glass, and ideal for pairing with the cheeses, charcuterie, and other treats on offer.
Despite the name, The Pop Up Flea isn't really a flea market. It's not exactly a store, either, seeing as how it's only open for a single weekend at a time. But when it is open, it's a must-see. Featuring vendors that have been invited specifically due to their dedication to craftsmanship and quality — brands like Aether, Marwood, Levi's Vintage, Filson, and Field Notes — it's sort of like a menswear/goods party that only happens every once in a while. On October 11-13, it'll be held across the pond in London, but fear not if you can't make the trek — there's another one scheduled for December 6-8 in NYC. [via]
To hear them tell it, the bowling scene in the UK was pretty dreary before All Star Lanes came along — and even if they're exaggerating a bit, we'll let it slide. Why? Because their five locations — four in London and one in Manchester — are so great, from the clean, fun lane designs, to the good food, to the tasty cocktails and beers, to the music selections, and — last but not least — their themed private rooms that look more like a Vegas suite than an English bowling alley.
Joining outposts in such celebrated cities as New York, Palm Springs, Portland, and Seattle, Ace has set its sights across the pond. The result is the Ace Hotel London Shoreditch. This new 265-room hotel offers a range of rooms from a standard double all the way up to a king suite with separate living space, with free Wi-Fi, custom quilts from A.P.C., and exclusive Farmers' bath products. And while select rooms entice you to stay in with turntables and radios, you'll want to venture out to see the on-site flower shop, restaurant and bar by David Waddington and Pablo Flack of Bistrotheque, a lobby cafe from Square Mile Coffee Roasters, and finally, when you're ready to head out into the city, a fleet of bikes from tokyobike.
We love it when clothing shops offer more than just goods to put on your body — and that's certainly the case with Paul Smith No. 9 Albemarle Street. This newly-opened expansion of the existing Mayfair shop features three distinct areas, each of which offers its own look and feel. The men's section is modern and masculine, with wood furniture and fixtures, while the women's area boasts elegant rails and domino-covered walls, and the furniture area resembles an art gallery as much as a store. As a bonus for those visiting in the next month or so, the shop is also hosting an exhibition of Braun products designed by the legendary Dieter Rams, all of which are available for sale.