Time Out says
Sizeable Stoke Newington bar from the team behind Happiness Forgets.
In the autumn of 2014 the staid Stoke Newington burger scene was shaken to its core by the arrival of disco-loving griller-about-town Burger Bear. And now, directly underneath this flung-together Stokey Bears diner, as-yet completely unmarked, is this new bar from the same people behind the consistently commendable Happiness Forgets in Hoxton Square. Like that forebear, it’s dark, seductive and serves peerless cocktails. But unlike the shoebox-sized Happiness, Original Sin is pretty sizeable.
A long, thin bar stretches the length of the long, thin room, which has old railway-carriagesque booth tables beside it. At one end, below a chandelier, is a very suave pool table – so suave that no 50-pence pieces are required, as it’s free. The whole venue is illuminated to a degree by funky ’70s lighting, including some pineapple-shaped wall pendants straight out of a tiki dream.
And the cocktails, brought to table by impeccably pleasant staff, are brilliant. They’re strong, well-balanced and classy. Interestingly, the short list doesn’t include any gin or vodka, but instead plenty of unusual and complex spirits such as white rye, Kamm & Sons and mezcal. There’s also a good showing from the aperitifs – Suze, Byrrh, Aperol, Amer Picon, vermouth. For an introduction try the hard-hitting Red Hook, with rye, maraschino and Punt e Mes (a decent £8), or the Penfold Sour (Byrrh, Kamm & Sons, Aquavit, lime and cane syrup, an equally decent £8). Such drinks seem simple, coming as they are without any of the scientific whizz-bang increasingly seen behind the bar these days, but to get the simple things right every time is often equally as hard. And as this new bar does get it right each time, maybe the real sin would be to miss it.
129 Stoke Newington High Street
|Transport:||Stoke Newington rail/Rectory Road rail|
|Opening hours:||Open 6pm-midnight Mon-Wed; 6pm-1.30am Thurs-Sat; 6pm-11pm Sun.|
|Do you own this business?|
Users say (14)
Average User Rating
4.7 / 5
- 5 star:10
- 4 star:4
- 3 star:0
- 2 star:0
- 1 star:0
My favorite bar in Stoke Newington - staff always fantastic! Even when people mention they started the day before they're so knowledgeable and helpful. My favorite Stoke Newington bar.
A real find, that is under stokey bears, next to TSB. Such a great interior looks beautiful inside.
Wonderful cocktails and servers, although possibly a little pricier than wanted for a night out but wonderful place to pop in or start a celebration.
Where do I start? Delicious cocktails, beautiful bar... Make sure you chat with the bar staff - they really know their stuff!
Really liked this place. I've heard it gets pretty on the weekend but I went for a late drink on a Thursday night, and it was perfect. Was a great mix of a cosy setting but buzzy atmosphere, and the cocktails were delicious. Staff really seem to know what they are talking about and can recommend the right drink to your tastes. Great place for a mid week cocktail.
My girlfriend and I got very lucky stumbling upon this bar, the doorman was welcoming as were the bar staff on a busy night. We were served promptly and the staff continued to be attentive. American service deserves American tips so give them what they deserve. The underground bar is small but my girlfriend loved the decor, I was disappointed at the size of my cocktail but good things come in small packages. Well done to all involved!
Snap up exclusive discounts in London
Time Out's handpicked deals — hurry, they won't be around for long...