Lisa Wright is a freelance writer and indie band obsessive. She'll see you down the front. Follow her on Twitter: @lisaannewright.
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Lisa Wright is a freelance writer and indie band obsessive. She'll see you down the front. Follow her on Twitter: @lisaannewright.
You can always expect Brum to do things its own way – even afternoon tea. From the laidback and casual to the upmarket and extravagant, there are loads of restaurants and cafés in Birmingham that do the classic English speciality just as you’d expect (clotted cream scones, champagne flutes and all). But because you’re in England’s capital of curry, there are several addresses that combine the traditional cake and finger sandwiches with spicy Indian faves. And over at Cadbury World, you’ll find a chocolate-themed menu that’s sure to satisfy all sweet tooths. So, want to pig out for a few hours while you’re in town? However traditional you want to go, these top-notch afternoon teas in Birmingham will let you have your miniature cake… and eat it. RECOMMENDED: Full guide to the best restaurants in Birmingham
Dublin and brunch are a match made in heaven, not just because of the need to soothe the head after a trip to the bars. They know how to eat here, and that is true at all times of day, so why wouldn’t it be at the weird mid-point between breakfast and lunch? Take the best parts of both and mash them through a typically thrilling Irish kaleidoscope, and you get the best brunch spots in Dublin. There are many great things to do in Dublin, and early starts sometimes mean that breakfast just isn’t possible. Do you know what is always possible? Brunch, that’s what. Enjoy.
Lulworth Cove is a sheltered, shell-shaped bay edged with bright white pebbles. Its striking views attract hundreds of thousands of visitors throughout the summer – so we’d recommend a day trip during the early evening, or when the temperature dips. While you’re there you’ll become an amateur geographer, spotting and navigating towering rock formations that were shaped 25 million years ago when continental tectonic plates collided (also forming the Alps in the process). Though the smattering of pubs, restaurants and other great attractions in these parts might not have been around quite that long, plenty are still old enough to feel like a trip back in time. Ready? Here’s our pick of the very best things to do in Lulworth Cove. RECOMMENDED: Find the best things to do in nearby Weymouth, Bournemouth and the New Forest
East end-born Stephen Perry has spent the last 45 years working in London’s high-end jewellery mecca Hatton Garden. Having started out as an apprentice, he now owns three family-run jewellery shops. Come heist or high water, he’s a passionate believer in the area’s craftsmanship and community. I started as a jeweller’s apprentice in 1976, when I was 15 years old. I did a five-year apprenticeship making fine jewellery. When you finished the apprenticeship, they would tie you to a lamppost on a chair and everyone who walked by knew you’d completed it. It was an initiation, a bit like being on a stag do. You never get used to working with things that are so valuable. I’m like a boy in a sweetshop! I was brought up in a working-class family from Whitechapel and we never had much, so I value everything. If you come in and spend £50 I’ll treat you the same as anyone spending a lot of money. The minute I lose that, it’ll be time for me to stop. The Spice Girls once turned up in their Mercedes convertibles. I’ve had people from all walks of life come in. I made an engagement ring for Barbara Windsor, some jewellery for Michael Caine and a boxing-ring pendant for Frank Bruno when he fought Mike Tyson in Vegas. I once discoloured a £300,000 diamond. My heart sank. It had gone from this beautiful white to brown. Luckily, I took it to someone more experienced and it went back to normal. The Hatton Garden heist really lifted business because there was so much publicity. For months after,
When Ky Hoyle went to Soho in the early ’90s to explore the sex shops, she found nothing that catered for female pleasure. She decided to take things into her own hands and launched Sh! Women’s Erotic Emporium, the country’s first sex shop specifically for women. Since then, she’s spent the last 28 years developing a safe space where women can explore their sexuality, learn about their own bodies and ask positive questions. I started Sh! in 1992 after a trip to Soho. As a young, liberated woman, I wanted to explore my sexuality. I was shocked at how intimidating and alienating the shop I went into was. I ended up going to so many, thinking the next one would be different, but there was nothing for women. There was so much hate around sexuality at the time. In the early ’90s, the government banned the teaching of LGBTQ+ life and the Aids epidemic was still prominent. The tabloids were saying things like: ‘Don’t sit on a public toilet seat or you’ll catch Aids’, so there was a stark difference between that and anyone who was vaguely conscious. It really felt like ‘us’ and ‘them’. There’s a huge pressure on women in terms of how they look and the kind of pleasure they should feel. It’s only recently that things are changing. We were the first ever women-focused shop in Europe. For a long time, our policy was that men were only welcome as guests of women. We were trying to level the playing field and make sure that any woman who walked into the shop felt comfortable. We stopped
‘I never set out to be a designer – I always just loved making clothes. I never wanted to conform. Even when I was really young in Essex, I’d make outrageous outfits just to wear to the pub. When I moved to London, I never looked back. I’m a massive raver, and in the late ’80s I’d go to all the underground raves: you’d have to call from a phone box to find out where they were. Then the government introduced the Criminal Justice Act, which made it illegal to group together and move to ‘repetitive beats’. The police would come and raid all the raves, so everything moved into the clubs. I couldn’t find clothes that fitted the scene, so I started to make designs. That’s how, in 1994, I started the first Cyberdog stall. Back then, you’d have to queue up at the Stables Market in Camden at 4am to get a spot. Then I and my partner Spiros noticed that at the edge of the market, in a corner, there was this triangle where the market traders used to put junk. We managed to secure that piece of land as our permanent pitch. We cleared it out, painted the walls black and put neon graffiti all over. We’d play banging techno all day and sell my designs. At the start, people would be intrigued but walk away, but gradually they started buying things. ‘I’d always wanted a shop with the same vibe as when you walk into a club’ Camden was such an assortment of people at that time: it was like a little ‘EastEnders’. Next to us was a pine furniture shop in a tunnel, and when they left, they offe
Ticket prices. Booking fees. Uber rides. That ill-advised round of shots. All in all, going to big gigs can be a wallet-wincing pursuit. But there are places you can go to see some genuinely massive bands without it costing a massive price. Moth Club With its sparkly gold walls and ‘if you know you know’ side-street location, it’s no surprise that Hackney’s Moth Club has become the go-to spot for ridiculous secret shows. In its short lifespan, Lady Gaga and Jarvis Cocker have popped along for a sing-song, while only last month Dave Grohl and Rick Astley launched the newly returned Club NME there with a set that only cost punters £5. Keep your eyes peeled: Lord knows who might turn up next. Old Trades Hall, Valette St, E9 6NU. Hackney Central Overground. mothclub.co.uk Rough Trade EastLondon’s mecca for vinyl buffs, off-Brick Lane staple Rough Trade East isn’t just good for finding that rare Aphex Twin import that’ll make you look cool to your workmates. Every week it hosts album launch in-stores, which are free to attend if you preorder or buy the record. And we’re not just talking leftfield muso fare either: everyone from Queens Of The Stone Age to Stormzy has passed through its doors, while you can look forward to Metronomy, Thurston Moore and, er, Keane in the coming weeks. Old Truman Brewery, 91 Brick Lane, E1 6QL. Liverpool St tube. roughtrade.com Banquet RecordsBanquet has been the king of Kingston for more than a decade now, and it continues to deliver the goods with
A gem of The North, harbouring sprawling countryside and entertainment-filled metropolitan spaces all at once that offer a ton of fun things to do, Yorkshire is God's own county. Technically split across three regions of England, even its main bulk of Yorkshire and the Humber is home to seven cities including Leeds, Sheffield and York—each with their own vibrant scenes. It's a lot to take in, so we've gathered up the county's absolute best bits—cherrypicked from throughout the area, and chosen for their relative must-see qualities. So whether you want to tap into the local history, sit down for some top-notch grub or just keep the little ones entertained for a while, here's exactly where and why you should be going on your next visit. Done something on this list and loved it? Share it with the hashtag #TimeOutDoList and tag @TimeOutEverywhere. Find out more about how Time Out selects the very best things to do all over the world.
1. It’s an influential snapshot of its era Swooping in during the noughties guitar-pop boom alongside Kaiser Chiefs, Hard-Fi and Maxïmo Park, Bloc Party are one of the era’s few bands not to be branded ‘landfill indie’. They’re as well regarded now as they were back then. Not only that, but their wired sound and tight, spiky riffs have gone on to influence the next generation. We’d wager that Foals, Two Door Cinema Club and Everything Everything all gave ‘Silent Alarm’ more than a few plays when they were forming. 2. It introduced us to the powerhouse that is Kele In frontman Kele Okereke, we didn’t just get a smart, eloquent lyricist, equally capable of political rage (‘Price of Gas’) and gutting heartache (‘This Modern Love’). We also got an artist who, as a black gay man, provides a fresh and distinctive voice sorely needed in the indie world. Next January, he’ll unveil ‘Leave to Remain’ – a new musical about ‘a young gay couple suddenly faced with an uncertain future’. He’s a genuine maestro. 3. It sounds absolutely enormous live We all know that ‘Helicopter’ and ‘Banquet’ are gold-plated bangers, but from the desperate gulps of opener ‘Like Eating Glass’ to the murky claustrophobia of ‘She’s Hearing Voices’, there’s not a track on ‘Silent Alarm’ that won’t sound powerful in Ally Pally. Plus, there’s a couple of numbers on it that they’ve only ever played live a handful of times. This gig will thrill the stans. 4. It still soundtracks modern London Plenty has changed ove
London has more than its fair share of identical high street chains – you can’t turn a corner in the city without stumbling upon an endless conveyor belt of Starbucks and Prets. But it’s also a place to indulge in some of life’s more niche concerns. Whether you wish to peruse the wares of a very particular whim or worship at the retail altar of your favourite obsession, London has a shop to suit. Very, very into smart-casual waistcoats? There’ll be a place for that. Devoted your life to the pursuit of the perfect mustard? Just let us consult our map. We know one man’s door knob collection is another (wo)man’s barrel-aged whisky, so here’s our pick of London’s most niche, specialist and unusual shops. RECOMMENDED: Hunt for treasures at London’s best flea markets
In a nutshell…It’s a small gig space above a vintage shop in central Hackney. What’s the vibe?Downstairs, there’s a fully operating vintage shop (watch out for drunken impulse buys) with a bar tucked away at the back. Upstairs you’ll find a dinky, 75-capacity room where bands play in front of a glass shop-front window overlooking the area’s bustling main road. A place to catch future stars in their most formative stages (previous bands to grace the stage include Teleman, Fat White Family and Public Service Broadcasting), it’s also a destination for more established artists to do something a lil’ different. Hot Chip’s Alexis Taylor has pitched up in the past, while indie-folk duo Slow Club played a four-week residency in 2016. What makes it a great venue?Its low-key nature means it feels a bit like stumbling into the house party of someone with an exceptionally curated wardrobe. Nestled on the corner of Mare Street, it still has the aura of an in-the-know secret. And who doesn’t want to be in the know? Also, on weekends, it often have club nights playing retro sounds until 1am. What’s the booze situation?As you might expect, Paper Dress are well into its craft beers – expect offerings from local neighbours Hackney Brewery, Crate Brewery and more. It also does a rather nifty cocktail menu with drinks coming in at around the £8 mark. What’s the weirdest thing to happen there?According to the venue manager: ‘One of our very first shows was gatecrashed by a man in a deerstalker ha
Billie Eilish? How come I’ve been hearing that name around so much lately?Because she’s one of the buzziest new US pop stars on the block. Having uploaded debut single ‘Ocean Eyes’ to SoundCloud back in 2016, the subsequent viral success of the song caused a good old-fashioned label scrum. Now Eilish is a fully paid-up major label star in the making. At South by South West last month, she was the talk of the town and everyone else is getting in a tizz about the LA singer too. Oh yeah… she’s only 16. Sixteen! That reminds me of another young Billie…Yes, but that’s where the similarities end between Eilish and Piper. You won’t find Billie E shouting playground chants about turning the music up any time soon. Instead, she’s a very modern kind of pop star. Read: terrifyingly worldly and mature for her minimal years, singing about love and relationships with impressively sassy nuance. Take the opening of ‘My Boy’: ‘My boy loves his friends like I love my split ends / And by that I mean, he cuts ’em off’. When did teenagers become so cool?We have no idea. Scary, isn’t it? Anyway, this one’s at the top of the pack, with the likes of Charli XCX, Vince Staples and Sofi Tukker all firmly in Team Billie. It’s not just hype, either. Landing somewhere between Sky Ferreira’s icy detachment and the tougher end of Lana Del Rey’s stylised melancholy, last year’s debut EP ‘dont smile at me’ (because capital letters are for squares) was a pop masterclass. Sounds good. What should I listen to fi
You can sum up the ethos of Carlotta and the whole of Big Mamma Group – the gaggle of visually decadent Italian eateries to which this new Marylebone den is the latest – by the statue that sits cheekily in the centre of its toilets. The piece de resistance in a circular, floor-to-ceiling mirrored room that’s more Studio 54 than manky cubicle, all bathroom selfies (of which there will inevitably be many) are presided over by the Virgin Mary with a ring light for a halo. Where tradition and overt, unashamed Instagrammability meet: this is the Big Mamma way. Carlotta marks the fifth eatery in the group’s rapidly-expanding London portfolio following Jacuzzi just four months ago and, this time around, the MO was to create something more intimate. In very literal terms, it succeeds; where Jacuzzi is spread over four rambling floors, Carlotta is contained modestly to one, which is where the modesty ends. From the framed vintage Italian boxing shorts, to the draped gold fabric that gives the impression of eating dinner inside Aladdin’s lamp, Carlotta is still a thoroughly more-is-more type of venue. All bathroom selfies (of which there will inevitably be many) are presided over by the Virgin Mary with a ring light for a halo. With a pleasingly chintzy soundtrack and exceedingly friendly staff, this is the sort of place where you’re meant to have fun. This time around there’s no pizza, and so the menu is split into antipasti, primi (pasta) and secondi. In keeping with the slightly
If this December's altogether un-magical real-world goings-on have made it trickier than normal to muster up the usual level of festive cheer, then Chickenshed's production of ‘Snow White’ is about as successful a quick-fix remedy as you're likely to find. The north London-based company champions inclusivity and diversity, and it's with this big-hearted spirit in mind that their 800(!)-strong cast (split into four rotating companies) has set about reworking the age-old tale of a girl who just loved apples a bit too much. Partly written by the cast members themselves, this ‘Snow White’ is more of a family-friendly musical than a panto per se: there's no audience participation or audacious dame – although Ashley Driver's turn as the evil stepmother's mirror reflection is cheeky and scene-stealing enough to fill the gap. But if you're looking for pure, wholesome Christmas good vibes, then you'll get a thousand times more from the company's all-ages-and-abilities chorus than you would watching an ex-member of ‘Hollyoaks’ thigh-slapping on a fancier stage. ‘Snow White’ isn't just an exercise in compassion, however. Enlisting William Fricker (‘War Horse’s original associate designer) to create a visually arresting, multimedia world – it‘s set in the Swinging Sixties – for the show to live in, it's a high-reaching, professional bar that the company set for themselves. Cara McInanny's Snow White is sweet and likeable, with a cracking voice, while Sarah Connolly plays stepmother Jane
For any remaining naysayers who believe that CBD oil is a bathroom cabinet addition reserved only for semi-reformed teenage stoners, let us direct you to The Drug Store. The name, of course, is purposefully blunt, but the pure white-walled Marylebone shop is more like a dermatologist from the future than your brother’s mate Stevo’s musty flat. I head downstairs to a space where they’ve installed a spa bed for their recently-introduced CBD facials. The brilliant white room and strip lighting might not have the most immediately relaxing vibe, but my therapist soon starts cleansing and moisturising, and I shut my eyes for the next hour anyway. The CBD element comes in the form of an infused face mask, which smells faintly cannabis-y. While the mask does its work, my neck, shoulders and face are massaged into blissful submission. Maybe it’s the oil, maybe it’s the whole package, but by the time something smelling vaguely of Jaffa Cakes is rubbed into my newly supple cheeks (anyone got the munchies?), I definitely feel pretty spaced-out. Emerging back into packed central London is a bit of a shock to the system, but hey - at least my skin is feeling perky.
High-end CBD retailers The Drug Store opened its first permanent London branch in Marylebone earlier this year, with the aim of shifting perceptions around the cannabis-based product. Now, not content with upping the fancy factor of their main item, they’re turning their eye to other less-talked-about topics in a new series of discussions entitled ‘Tackling Taboos’. The first will see The Drug Store’s co-founder Clemens Boeninger and Swedish sex toy manufacturer Sinnead Ali lead a conversation about female sexual wellbeing, sexual health and intimacy, with the focus on open, honest and proactive discussion. And, once your barriers and sufficiently broken down, you’ll be able to peruse a selection of their CBD lubricants, vibrators and more. Stay tuned for more instalments in the mind-expanding series.
If you happened to be browsing the shelves of Dalston deli Weino BIB on a recent Sunday afternoon, you’d have seen a strange, congealed-looking creature festering in a jar. It is ‘the mother’. The mother needs feeding and keeping in darkness, her temperature raised so she can spawn and produce more mothers. I’m not, however, in a sinister lab. I’m at a kombucha-making workshop: the en vogue drink that’s meant to sort your gut bacteria and cure what ails ya. The ‘mother’ in question is called a ‘scoby’ and lies, as the small group of us assembled today learn, at the heart of the process. Top her up with sweet tea and flavourings and she’ll sit in the corner, fermenting and doing her thing. A week later and you’ve got a sour-yet-pleasant beverage. The class is led by Adam – a Monty Don-like man who runs fermentation company Cultcure. The workshops take place at different locations in London and usually sell out in advance, or you can organise your own bespoke, private fermenting sesh at a venue of your choice. My class is a run-through of the process used to make kombucha, the more temperamental water kefir and its creamy cousin dairy kefir (which tastes like runny sour cheese, but in a good way). It’s informative, although don’t go expecting to actually do a lot. The mother does all the hard work, while you – her children – just have to wait. Two hours later, and having tasted enough of the stuff to genuinely feel a bit wired (maybe there’s something in it after all…), I leave
There are two ways of viewing ‘Journey to the Underworld’ – the latest event to take place in Pedley Street ‘station’ (actually a railway arch venue with a vintage train carriage, rather than a fully Oyster card-worthy commuter platform). And, more than most, how you approach the evening will affect whether you come out of Funicular Productions' newest venture satisfied or just mildly bemused. From one angle, tonight's entertainment is primarily a fancy meal, with a bit of dinner theatre thrown in for good measure. Before you enter the carriage itself, you're greeted with a bar serving seven deadly sins-themed cocktails (all dispensed by barmen in Grim Reaper costumes – natch). And then, when you get to the meal itself... Oh, the meal. Designed by 'Masterchef' finalist Louisa Ellis, it's an immaculate, beautiful and unbelievably delicious four courses, served by lamplight and plated like a high-end restaurant. If you're coming at tonight from a theatrical perspective, however, then things aren't quite so cut and dried. The premise of the evening goes thus: On our journey into the fires of hell (which is illustrated by some bobbing red scenery outside our windows), we're greeted by a bedraggled man who's been kept a prisoner for years. He also has a captured bride – don't they all – who he's desperate to reunite with. Will they eventually break free from their evil captor and run into the sunset of true love? It's a tried-and-tested tale, and that's fine. But it's the executi
Motormouth Mancunian beer-swilling gobshites or the UK’s best ever rock ’n’ roll stars? Love them or hate them, everyone has an opinion on Oasis. Since Liam ’n’ Noel swaggered into view at the top end of the ’90s, slugging it out for the Britpop crown and playing to a quarter of a million people at Knebworth at the apex of their enormous success, the battling brothers have been a firm fixture in everyone’s musical knowledge. The band are seemingly no closer to that fabled reunion, but now you can stop crying your heart out, stock up on cigarettes and alcohol and head to Camden for a night entirely dedicated to their wares. So, what’s the story? Well, as the first of a new series aimed at going in hard on one beloved artist, Back to Back Oasis will be bowling over to Camden’s Dingwalls on Friday March 13 for a night playing solely bangers, b-sides and live bops from the band. Unlike many of the increasing slew of artist-centric nights taking up residency in the city (from Cher to Robbie, all your faves have had parties of late), here you'll hear only Oasis. No ’90s also-rans, no laddy inferiors, just wall-to-wall Gallagher for four golden hours. The team behind Back to Back previously flexed their fan muscles putting on a similar Springsteen-centric night, so they should be well-versed in pleasing punters. Running from 11pm until 3am, it’s definitely (no maybes) guaranteed to be a parka-filled, sunglasses-indoors excuse to indulge your most glorious Gallagher-loving fantasies.
Bang! Crash! Kapow! Not the sound of the poor bartender who just dropped a tray full of wine glasses, but the altogether more exciting noises that’ll accompany a night spent in London’s newest theme bar. Heading to Stoke Newington for three-month pop-up Superheroes Bar, an immersive trip that’ll cast you as the hero in your own drinking adventure. Once fitted with your mask and cape (pants over trousers optional), your mission is to collect ‘stones of power’ that’ll enable you to become, if not an expert mixologist, then at least a person with three drinks in front of them. You can pick from beer stones, cocktail stones and mocktail stones, with which you create bevvies that fuse fun comic-book kitsch and genuine drinking nous. Although it might not be a mission that’ll justify its own Marvel spin-off, chances are it’ll be worth the ride: the bar is brought to you by the team behind wizardy cocktail experience The Cauldron, so this lot have form in concocting playful places to nerd out with a drink in hand. Tickets are priced from £29.99, which includes three drinks, with the games beginning on March 27. And on the day after your visit you can find out the answer to that burning question: do superheroes get hangovers? Superheroes Bar is at 5D Stoke Newington Rd. Find out more here. Or, be a true hero and work your way around London’s other quirky bars.
It’s been 20 years since Kelis first burst on to the scene with debut album ‘Kaleidoscope’ and 16 since she permanently turned everyone’s favourite dairy-based drink from a diner favourite into a saucy euphemism. And now, like a musical Penny Crayon turning song into real life, the iconic singer will be bringing her milkshake to London’s yard IRL. On March 18, to celebrate the anniversary reissue of her debut (and because she is clearly a full-on legend who can get in on a joke), Kelis will be heading to The Iron Bloom on Shoreditch’s Great Eastern Street to host a pop-up milkshake bar called The Yard, in conjunction with Deliveroo. There’ll be five shakes on offer, all named after songs by the artist, and damn right, they’re, well, if not better than your standard fare, then at least significantly more extra. The Millionaire shake will feature edible $100 bills and real gold; Good Stuff comes with plantain, jerk seasoning and frozen banana; and Trick Me is an indulgent creamy coconut affair that’s actually vegan (geddit?). And the most important bit: Kelis will be there from 1pm on the day, getting her shake on. Having released a cookbook back in 2015, she’s no stranger to the kitchen, after all. So hotfoot it down to The Yard (or nab a shake via Deliveroo): she can teach you, but she might have to charge (probably around a fiver, we suspect). The Yard by Deliveroo and Kelis can be found at 46 Great Eastern St on Mar 18. Now you’re in the mood, why not try one of London’s be
For the past 60 years, Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club has cemented itself as a Soho institution – a place where music’s great and good, from Amy Winehouse to Jimi Hendrix (who jammed with mate Eric Burdon there in 1970: his last ever show), have graced the stage and that still draws crowds of people making the pilgrimage through its doors on the daily. Now, in celebration of its big birthday, the iconic venue will be heading to north London for a one-off event, presenting Milestones Festival at the altogether-larger Alexandra Palace on July 26. Naturally, they’ve got a line-up that’ll set the hearts of contemporary jazz nerds all a-flutter, too. Critically-acclaimed Californian Kamasi Washington will be playing his only UK show of 2020, while the Mercury Prize-nominated Seed Ensemble, pianist Reuben James and Courtney Pine will also be among those present. With a full bill of supporting artists, DJs and more also lined up, the all-dayer is set to give the venue’s own milestone a suitable toast. While most 60-year-olds are collecting their free bus pass, Ronnie Scott’s is still keeping things fresh and proving there’s life in the old dog yet. Toot toot! Tickets are priced at £44.75. Purchase them, and get all the info, here. Mmmm, jazz. Get more of it at London’s best specialist bars and venues.
Although Margarita Day might not be the kind of thing you get a bank holiday for, it certainly is a good excuse to raise a glass of the good stuff. And lucky for you, it falls on a Saturday this year. You can get it tart, salty, fruity, frozen, turned into a lollipop or infused with all the flavours under the sun, but at its core, a Margarita needs just three things: tequila, orange liqueur and lime. And on Saturday February 22, loads of places in the city will be paying tribute to this holy trinity with their own parties, offers and general Margarita mania. Want to indulge in a salty rim? Here’s how to grab yourself a free Margarita, and where to toast the classic cocktail. Jose Cuervo delivery service Want to get your Marg on, but don’t want to have to leave your house? Then praise the tequila gods, because this weekend Jose Cuervo are bringing a cocktail bar to your living room. Its Cuervo Riders will be rocking up to a handful of lucky homes (or offices), armed with all the ingredients to make classic, golden or salted grapefruit margaritas for you and your pals. All you need to do is sign up to the ticket lottery here and keep your fingers crossed. Duck & Dry beverage and blow-dry Why wait until you’ve gone out to start cocktail time when you can include it in your getting ready regime? Such is the logic at Duck & Dry, who’ll be giving away a Cointreau Margarita to anyone who pops in for a blow-dry at its King’s Road salon on Saturday. Those booked into the Oxford Circus
If you’re already rooting out your finest emerald green garb and training your stomach to handle that eighth pint of Guinness in time for St Patrick’s Day on March 17, then we have some good news for you. Much-loved Irish boozer Gibney’s in Malahide, a Dublin institution that’s been keeping the locals watered for more than 80 years, will be opening a second outpost – and you don’t have to get on a plane to go there. Taking root in a new basement bar below Old Street restaurant Daffodil Mulligan (the latest venture from decorated Irish chef Richard Corrigan), the pub will stock the Gibney family’s brew stout alongside a host of Irish spirits and specialist cocktails. In keeping with the high-end restaurant upstairs, Corrigan has designed a selection of posh bar snacks to go with your pint, including a black pudding sando and a rock and native oyster selection. Fancy. Gibney’s London launches on March 12 and will be open until 2am on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, with comedy nights and live music also planned. So raise a toast to the city’s newest drinking spot: let’s hope it has the luck of the Irish. Grab a Guinness at one of London’s finest Irish watering holes.
Anyone who attended The Strokes’ massive All Points East headline show last year will have likely left Victoria Park with two main takeaways: 1) The New York indie icons are still the coolest cats in town, and 2) God damn, the sound was heartbreakingly quiet. Now, however, fans of the quintet have got a very exciting chance for an intimate, sweaty do-over, as the band are heading to London for a one-off show at Camden’s Roundhouse next Wednesday (February 19). The stop-off is to celebrate the imminent release of forthcoming album ‘The New Abnormal’ – Julian Casablancas and co’s first since 2013’s ‘Comedown Machine’, announced yesterday at a Bernie Sanders rally. But whether you’re a diehard gagging for the new material, or merely a noughties nostalgist wanting to yell ‘Last Nite’ at the top of your lungs, there’s little doubt that The Strokes will have something up their leather jacket sleeves for you at this one. Tickets go on sale at 1pm this Friday (Feb 14) here. Keep your 2020 music-filled with a visit to some of London’s other legendary gig venues.
BST Hyde Park festival has good form in not only nabbing some of the world’s biggest stars, but also booking an impressively broad cross-section of them. And this year is no exception. Having already announced top pop queen Taylor Swift, grizzled raaaawkers Pearl Jam, everyone’s favourite girl gang Little Mix and King Kendrick Lamar, now it’s added Post Malone to the roll call of 2020 bill-toppers. Fresh from co-headlining Reading and Leeds last year, the New Yorker will be trying to once again prove his ‘Rockstar’ credentials on Thursday July 2, when he’ll take to the stage with an as-yet-unannounced roster of supports. And, love or loathe the ‘Beerbongs & Bentleys’ star, you can’t argue with the numbers – 65 million album sales in the US alone and counting. Tickets go on sale on Friday (February 14) at 9am. So pop to Claire’s, grab a pack of temporary tattoos and stick ’em on your face in prep: this Postie’s getting mailed to London very soon. Tickets for Post Malone at BST are available here. Keep up to date with 2020’s festival season announcements right here.
Beliebers, assemble! Floppy fringed Youtuber turned pop’s premier Baldwin-loving bad boy Justin Bieber is playing in London for the first time in three years, and he’s got a rather ‘Yummy’ plan up his tattooed sleeve. He’ll be heading to Greenwich next week but rather than pitching up at The O2’s main 20,000-strong arena, Biebs will be taking a left turn and heading to the altogether more intimate 2,300-capacity Indigo2 for a special acoustic gig followed by a fan Q&A session. It’s happening next Tuesday, February 11, just three days before his new album ‘Changes’ drops. The last time JB came to the capital to play live, he headlined Hyde Park’s massive BST festival. So in comparison, this show will basically feel like having one of the most famous celebs in the world in your living room. Which is fun! Tickets for the shows go on sale at 10am this Monday (February 10) from here, so set your alarms - miss out and it will indeed be, ahem, too late to say sorry. Keep up to date with all the latest big London gig announcements via Time Out's music hub.
Calling all kids, big kids and, tbh, anyone who just needs a colourful wake-up call from their January slump. Artist Camille Walala and Lego have teamed up to create a pop-up installation in King’s Cross’s Coal Drops Yard – and it’s a dotty, delightful playground of colour. Proving that childhood dreams can come true, ‘House of Dots’ features a ball pit, a massive slide, a disco and more, all built into a shipping container ‘house’, themed around the spotty motif. When inside, you’ll be able to design dotty jewellery, dance in the dotty disco, climb around a dotty kitchen set and – obviously – take a hell of a lot of pictures. It’s all in aid of Lego’s new DOTS range: a 2D, tile-based version of the much-loved creative brick. You can spot (ahem) House of Dots from now until Sunday (February 2), entrance is free and we've got an exclusive release of tickets for Time Out readers' here (snap 'em up quick!). Not since Yayoi Kusama’s Insta-omnipotent circles has London been given such a dotty treat. In the zone for some more serious art? Here are the best exhibitions in London right now.
As you might have noticed, we quite like London. We like its people, we like its parks and we really like its pubs. And now, when we boast that London has the best boozers, we have some back-up. The Estrella Damm Top 50 Gastropub Awards are voted for by food critics, chefs, pub owners and all manner of industry experts, and this year’s numero uno? None other than Fulham’s Harwood Arms. Currently the only Michelin-starred pub in London, it’s helmed by head chef Sally Abé with a focus on traditional British fare, specialising in game. Which means you can expect the likes of fallow deer with stuffed mushroom, hazelnut and purple sprouting broccoli, or roast red-legged partridge with bacon, creamed kale, pickled pear and bread sauce. Then there’s a top-drawer Sunday roast (of course), an extensive wine list and the kind of desserts (lemon curd doughnuts with earl grey cream, anyone?) that not even the staunchest healthy eater could resist. Mayfair’s The Guinea Grill also sneaks into the Top 10, while eight of the capital’s eateries grace the Top 50 in total. So make like Drake and start from the bottom (of the list) and get to here. ‘Here’ being the Harwood Arms, obviously. Keep up. Check out the full list here. For more of London’s best gastropubs, eat and drink your way through Time Out’s list of the city’s finest.
Already craving an expertly curated, vaguely festival-shaped pilgrimage, but not quite ready to brave a day in the cold outdoors just yet? Well, BBC 6 Music’s resident musos have lined up a perfect, manageable event – and it’s a mere hop away on the Northern line! Every year, the BBC 6 Music Festival descends on a different city, and in 2020 it’s our own fair capital (and Camden specifically) that’ll be playing host to its credible wares. It's bringing a gaggle of gigs to the borough from March 6 to 8: you can catch the likes of Mike Skinner, Michael Kiwanuka, Bombay Bicycle Club and Róisín Murphy taking to stages at the Roundhouse, Dingwalls, Electric Ballroom and Fest. Want some new music recommendations? It has those too, with slacker popstar Beabadoobee, north Londoners Sorry, Mercury-nominated noiseniks Black Midi and loads more also on the bill. And on March 8, the Roundhouse’s main space will be dedicated to an International Women’s Day celebration featuring Kate Tempest, Kim Gordon, Anna Meredith, Savages’ Jehnny Beth and Nadine Shah. You know that new year’s resolution you made to soak up more of the city’s culture? Here’s how to keep it up with ease. Tickets for all events go on sale at 10am on Fri Jan 24. Head here for full line-ups and info. Want more gigs? Get yourself down to London's finest music venues for the pick of the crop.