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The 100 best bars and pubs in London: the best cocktails in London

Discover the meanest martinis and the most delicious daiquiris served at our selection of the best bars and pubs in the capital

Written by
Laura Richards
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We parked ourselves down on bar stools across the capital and sipped away on some serious drinks so we could deliver to you our list of the 100 best bars and pubs in London. But from our research there were some tipples that truly shone. If you're a booze enthusiast, read on, as we serve up our list of the best cocktails in London.

RECOMMENDED: The 100 best bars and pubs in London

Classic daiquiri at Rum Kitchen
  • Bars and pubs
  • Cocktail bars
  • Notting Hill

£8

Rum, lime, sugar

The range of rum is so astounding at Rum Kitchen that we suggest you sip on any of their riffs on the daiquiri - such as this stripped-back classic - to taste it to its full effect.

Rhubarb and Custard at Ladies & Gentlemen
  • Bars and pubs
  • Cocktail bars
  • Kentish Town
  • price 2 of 4

£8

Gin, Bird's custard, rhubarb syrup, lemon

If the setting of this bar - in a disused public lav - isn't playful enough for you, how about a sweet cocktail served in a retro custard tin?

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Marmalade Cocktail at Hawksmoor Spitalfields Bar
  • Bars and pubs
  • Cocktail bars
  • Spitalfields
  • price 2 of 4

£9.50

Campari, lemon, orange bitters, English marmalade

You'll need something sharp to wash down the hearty bar snacks at Hawksmoor, and this drink is perfectly balanced and up to the task, recommended for fans of a bitter tipple. The menu tells you this drink was created for drinking pre-11am for an energy boost – in truth, any time will do.

Airmail at Nightjar
  • Bars and pubs
  • Cocktail bars
  • Hoxton
  • price 2 of 4

£12

Rum, mint, lime, bee pollen, green tea, champagne

They do the classics good and boozy at Nightjar. This drink will get you tipsy at a speed far pacier than the first class post par avion, thanks to rum and champagne. There's also a typical quirky Nightjar addition: bee pollen.   

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Köln Martini at Zetter Townhouse
  • Hotels
  • Boutique hotels
  • Clerkenwell
  • price 3 of 4

£8.50

Gin, vermouth, own-made citrus aromatics

In a bar where the décor rules, we suggest you opt for this minimal martini and then drink in the surroundings. It's one of our faves in town since droplets of citrus aromatics are added from a cute tincture bottle at your table.  

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Blue Angel at Beaufort Bar at The Savoy
  • Bars and pubs
  • Hotel bars
  • Strand
  • price 4 of 4

£50

Gin, dry vermouth, Cointreu, botanical cordial, champagne, lemon sorbet

If you're living it up at the Beaufort Bar there really is no choice other than a champagne cocktail. Even better, there's a dollop of lemon sorbet floating in your fizz. Yes, there's the price tag, but we justify it to ourselves by saying it's a cocktail and dessert combined.

Americano at American Bar at the Beaumont
  • Bars and pubs
  • Hotel bars
  • Mayfair
  • price 3 of 4

£10.50

Campari, sweet vermouth, club soda

It would be rude not to order an americano at the American Bar. This is our favourite, but any of the classics will be flying the star-spangled banner here.

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Holy Scotch at Mr Fogg's
  • Bars and pubs
  • Cocktail bars
  • Mayfair
  • price 3 of 4

£15

Whisky, cherry wine, amaro averna liqueur, spice syrup, grapefruit, lemon

This Mayfair bar is meant to be the home of Phileas Fogg, so order a whisky cocktail for true British class. The Holy Scotch is strong, sweet and boozy.

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Bulletproof Martini at White Lyan
  • Bars and pubs
  • Cocktail bars
  • Hoxton
  • price 2 of 4

£9

Tequila, distilled coffee, coffee oil, vanilla

They don't do things by the book at White Lyan, and the Bulletproof Martini just proves that a bold (and caffeinated) approach is best. Square Mile coffee oil is used to elevate this beyond your average espresso martini concoction.

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  • Bars and pubs
  • Cocktail bars
  • Bethnal Green
  • price 2 of 4

£8

Gin, dry vermouth, sweet vermouth, Grand Marnier, orange bitters, orange

This Bethnal Green bar has brought an often overlooked orange-flavoured cocktail classic back into the zeitgeist. The menu changes daily, so in the absence of the bar's namesake cocktail, order the Satan's Americano, Satan's Manhattan, or any other house twist on the classics. They're all devilishly good.

Tokyo Collins at Happiness Forgets
  • Bars and pubs
  • Cocktail bars
  • Hoxton
  • price 2 of 4

£8.50

Gin, yuzu, saké, lemon, grapefruit, sugar, soda

Innovative cocktails are the name of the game at Happiness Forgets, but bar staff never lead you astray thanks to a tight grasp of the cocktail fundamentals. This oriental option is a winner.

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Marsala martini at Bar Termini
  • Bars and pubs
  • Cocktail bars
  • Soho
  • price 2 of 4

£8

Gin, sweet marsala, dry vermouth, almond bitters

It's either coffee or cocktails at Bar Termini, and if you're opting for the latter, we salute you. We also recommend the marsala martini as one of the best things we've drunk in the last few months.

Sumac My Bitch Up at Peg & Patriot
  • Bars and pubs
  • Cocktail bars
  • Bethnal Green
  • price 2 of 4

£9.50

Greek yoghurt gin, kummel, lemon, cucumber, sumac honey

The play on words at Peg & Patriot is almost as good as the cocktails. Try this tipple to see what the bar is all about – crafting spirits in house and packaging them up with novel ingredients, like the tangy golden honey that gives this drink its name.

See London's best cocktail bars

The best cocktail bars in London
  • Bars and pubs

Whether you're looking for a top Tom Collins, a magnificent martini or the quintessential cosmo – somewhere in town there's a bartender just waiting to mix it for you. 

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