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Tropical-themed cocktail bar brought to you by Idris Elba.
Idris Elba is the co-founder of this Aldwych bar attached to The Waldorf Hilton. And yet, it’s neither the vibing hangout you’d expect from Big Driis nor a swanky hotel spot. We walked in via a celeb-appropriate carpet and velvet rope to find zero celebs – just curious hotel guests and a few friends supporting a covers band on stage (‘Isn’t She Lovely’ was very unlovely). Much has been done to make an oddly shaped place look like a tropical paradise – neon, palms and eponymous stuffed birds – but with passing buses visible through the windows, any illusion was shattered. Still, the bar and the stage looked pretty fine.
Drinks were a visual feast, too. I sipped one through a bong-like vessel, while another cocktail came with a light switch at the base, providing uplighting for my face that made me wish I’d gone there on a date. Making a decision on what to drink felt agonising, since each of many cocktails had a paragraph-long description, but bar staff were comfortable making recommendations. The Princess Parrot (£12; gin, pear, thyme) and Senegal Parrot (£14; gin, bergamot liqueur, rosemary) were good, if a little samey. A Blue Macaw (£14) was a fun and fruity rum drink for those buying into the tropical theme.
So don’t flock to The Parrot expecting the Hollywood factor. But the cocktails, at least, were made for papping.
The Waldorf Hilton
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