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

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

The Rum Kitchen daiquiri
Bars and pubs, Cocktail bars

Classic daiquiri at Rum Kitchen

icon-location-pin Westbourne


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

Rhubarb and Custard at Ladies & Gentlemen

icon-location-pin Kentish Town


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?

Hawksmoor Spitalfields
Bars and pubs, Cocktail bars

Marmalade Cocktail at Hawksmoor Spitalfields Bar

icon-location-pin Spitalfields


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.

Nightjar airmail
Bars and pubs, Cocktail bars

Airmail at Nightjar

icon-location-pin Hoxton


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.   

Zetter Townhouse - Koln martini
Hotels, Boutique hotels

Köln Martini at Zetter Townhouse

icon-location-pin Clerkenwell


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.  

Beaufort bar - blue angel
Bars and pubs, Hotel bars

Blue Angel at Beaufort Bar at The Savoy

icon-location-pin Charing Cross


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.

Bars and pubs, Hotel bars

Americano at American Bar at the Beaumont

icon-location-pin Mayfair


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.

Mr Fogg's - holy scotch
Bars and pubs, Cocktail bars

Holy Scotch at Mr Fogg's

icon-location-pin Mayfair


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.

White Lyan - bulletproof martini
Bars and pubs, Cocktail bars

Bulletproof Martini at White Lyan

icon-location-pin Hoxton


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.

Satan's whiskers
Bars and pubs, Cocktail bars

Satan's Whiskers at Satan's Whiskers

icon-location-pin Bethnal Green


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.

Happiness Forgets
Bars and pubs, Cocktail bars

Tokyo Collins at Happiness Forgets

icon-location-pin Shoreditch


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.

Bars and pubs, Cocktail bars

Marsala martini at Bar Termini

icon-location-pin Soho


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.

Peg & Patriot - sumac my bitch up
Bars and pubs, Cocktail bars

Sumac My Bitch Up at Peg & Patriot

icon-location-pin Bethnal Green


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

Lab cocktails
Bars and pubs

The best cocktail bars in London

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. 

More to explore

Snap up exclusive discounts in London

Time Out's handpicked deals — hurry, they won't be around for long...