The drinks menu at this part-sophisticated, part-kitsch Scottish-themed enterprise – tartan everywhere – is less of a list and more of an encyclopaedia. The histories of various whisky regions are outlined within its pages, which also contain individual tasting notes worthy of the most pedantic oenophile.
The nose of a 15-year-old Glen Garioch (£12) offers hints of ‘Parma violets and heather’, while a rare single-cask Ardbeg from Islay ‘is rich with layers of dense oily phenols, tropical and green fruits, with a distinctive medical streak running through it’. For £245 a shot, you’d expect nothing less.
The food’s good, but those just here for a drink may prefer to take theirs with a Cuban smoke on the heated, covered Cigar Terrace.
The admission fees are billed as an ‘optional jazz charge’, but the music’s often of a high enough standard that it’s a price worth paying.
There’s more of the same at the Boisdale’s City branch (Swedeland Court, 202 Bishopsgate, EC2M 4NR, 7283 1763) and enormous new Canary Wharf setup (Cabot Place, E14 4QT, 7715 5818).