Midnight Apothecary

Things to do, Food and drink events
3 out of 5 stars
(12user reviews)
Midnight Apothecary, Brunel Museum

Sip botanical cocktails, pile round campfires, toasting marshmallows, tuck into Greek street food and venture into the Brunel tunnel - a giant subterranean concert hall - at this quirky cocktail takeover at the Brunel Museum's rooftop garden. On Friday's you'll find Piccalilli from Surrey Docks Farm on the roof providing a feast of fine food and artisan bread. On Saturdays, the Great Greek Grill will be dishing up grub. 

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Average User Rating

3.3 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:4
  • 4 star:2
  • 3 star:1
  • 2 star:4
  • 1 star:1
LiveReviews|12
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1 of 1 found helpful

Very underwhelming. Expensive drinks, dead atmosphere. wouldnt recommend or revisit. 

1 of 1 found helpful
tastemaker

Midnight Apothecary runs from May to September.


I missed it last summer, so absolutely wanted to do it this year!


Maybe it was because of the weather which was not great last Friday, but I was a bit disappointed.


The concept is really great; I can’t deny it - fire camp with marshmallow in a middle of a small and cute garden. The cocktails are good, original and I like the look they have.


But once you got your cocktail and have grilled your first marshmallow, the magic stop and Cinderella’s coach is back to a pumpkin.



I am happy I tried, but this was not as good as I was expecting.

tastemaker

If you are a discerning cocktail-drinker, the Midnight Apothecary is not the place for you.


Tucked in a secluded rooftop garden, above the shaft of the Thames Brunel Tunnel in Rotherhithe, its atmosphere ought to be quite scenic, with a cocktail menu that promises ingredients grown in the garden or foraged nearby. There's also a campfire, with tree stumps around it to sit on whilst roasting marshmallows. The online entry fee is £5.50, which includes a guided visit to the shaft, whereas cocktails are priced £9 each.


When we arrived, there was a long queue to the bar and, with about 100 people already in, there was no way to reach the campfire, nor to find a spot where we wouldn't be continuously pushed by punters or staff trying to wiggle their way around.


We ordered a Raspberry & Scented Geranium Sour and a Woodland Martini and, whilst the latter was acceptable, the former tasted and smelled vile. A closer look to the bar staff showed that all drinks are pre-mixed and only briefly shaken with egg whites before serving. The result is a lukewarm concoction with a whiff of stale eggs.


With no place to stand or rest our glass and an off-putting cocktail that we weren't willing to finish, we hastily left the premises in under 30 minutes.


What can I say about the midnight apothecary other than what a total disappointment it is. Rooftop cocktails? It’s 5 steps off the ground. Your views are of housing estates. It’s cramped. Botanical cocktails? The drinks are weak and shoved with flowers as some substitute for flavour. Staff range from either lazy and stood around doing nothing To overly in your face with cheesy chirpy sales speak. Avoid.

tastemaker

A wonderful setting in the heart of Rotherhithe, the Midnight Apothecary bar is in its very own round garden. Serving cocktails infused with herbs from the garden, it is situated on top of Brunel's 'tunnel shaft'. This was once part of a large scale civil engineering project to tunnel underneath the Thames many years ago. This is therefore also the site of the Brunel museum and for £6 per person you get access to the garden bar, the Museum and a short talk in the tunnel shaft itself to enlighten you on the history of Brunel and his great engineering challenge. The setting is lovely and even more special when it gets dark as the garden is lit by candles and hanging lanterns with a campfire in the middle. Marshmallows are provided and can be toasted on the fire alongside your beer or cocktail. Cocktails are £8, beers are £4 and there's a food van serving falafel / chicken / beef buns. A very special place with limited availability so it is worth booking online in advance!

Tastemaker

A much smaller and intimate outside bar than I expected and luckily for my friend and I arrived early so were able to nab seating round the camp fire.

MA isn't quite what I would define as a rooftop bar however technically it is; a herb garden on top of the roof of the Brunnel tunnel... Just don't expect a view. 

The rooftop is beautifully done, with a small campfire, marshmallows available to toast, lots of beautiful herbs and flowers and a little bar selling beautiful cocktails containing flowers and herbs from the garden.

Fantastic Greek food is also available from a local street food vendor - I would thoroughly recommend the feta pitta. 

Make sure you go on the hourly tour of the tunnel - the eccentric actor does it justice and it's actually very interesting even after work on a Friday! 

What is essential is good weather as there is no shelter on the roof top. You'll want plenty of cash as well or alternatively a few more bars lined up! Annnnd you'll need to book - don't just turn up as it was very busy by 6.30pm.


I was reluctantly dragged along to this for my friend's birthday last weekend and ended up having such a good night I wanted to share it. I forgot about the chilly weather when I was toasting marshmallows around a fire and drinking amazing concoctions made from plants and herbs in the garden. It's like nothing else I've found in London. Five stars!


A great little place that I really enjoy visiting! The bar is seasonal so it's closed for most of the winter (boo!) but it's a great spot for enjoying the delicious cocktails in the garden. The staff couldn't be more friendly and the atmosphere is relaxed and happy. Would deffo recommend!


Came here with my friend last night and my only disappointment was that it's closing soon! Amazing cocktails that look as good as they taste, brilliant staff and a magical garden that's like falling down the rabbit hole! Anyone who slates this place are out of their minds - it's a hidden gem!!


Strong drinks and a magical garden. I found this bar to be absolutely enchanting. Nothing like what other reviews have described. The place was thriving, strangers sat and befriended each other for the night amongst beautiful scenery and some of the best drinks I have ever tried. I had two and had to have a soft drink to pace myself. Simply a delight.

tastemaker

The small garden on top of the tunnel is set in a lovely quaint part of London - so having a small green space growing wild is not such a surprise as it is on the Southbank.  We were there on a lovely summer's evening and were all in a somewhat convivial mood yet when we entered the garden area, it was strangely quiet - disappointment already in the air, on reflection.  The talk given in the somewhat bare tunnel was interesting but the small cocktails sold in the garden were a ripoff and not even enjoyable.  I thought this would be an interesting addition to my birthday pub crawl but was very disappointed.


I was looking forward to the concept of Midnight Apothecary - cocktails in a summer garden with an open fire, but the reality was very disappointing. The garden is small and rather cramped, there's not much room to sit and then only on rickety planks, and though the fire is a nice feature, on a hot evening it was unbearable to sit nearby


Worst was the overpriced £8 cocktails. I ordered an interesting-sound pine gin and smoked sage martini, which tasted faintly of washing-up water. Between our party we sampled five cocktails, and they all mostly tasted of the small plastic cups they came in. Definitely the worst cocktails I've ever had in London.

On top of £8 cocktails we paid £5 entry, which presumably covers entrance to the museum (normally £6). The museum is an empty shed, and the much touted "descent" into the shaft is little more than a flight of stairs down to a circular hole in the ground, with a staff member giving a talk about the project, accompanied by the rumble of trains passing beneath. After which we left, having spent nearly £80 between six of us.


Given the great concept, it's very disappointing. It needs a better location with a larger or more comfortable garden, and decent tasting cocktails for the price, not served in small nasty cups that make everything taste of plastic.