London adventures: from Satan’s Whiskers to the Nightjar

After a great dinner at the Corner Room in Bethnal Green, I decided to check out nearby bar Satan’s Whiskers which had just opened a few months back. The bar, indicated by a red neon sign, had the expected decor of hipster cocktail lounges with a tasteful mix of brick, reclaimed items, light bulbs with visible filaments, a selection of taxidermied and accessorized animals, a unicorn skeleton, and an ironic old school hip hop soundtrack.

Satan's Whiskers

Pleasantries aside, the bar has a very comfortable neighborhood vibe. The cocktail menu which changes daily is heavily anchored in the classics. I refrained from ordering the namesake cocktail due to my fear of drinks containing orange juice, although I heard that their version (straight, i.e. with Grand Marnier) is a good one. Instead I went for a Manhattan with Knob Creek that hit the spot. My drinking companion went for another classic, a Sazerac, which was made with a mix of rye and cognac.

Manhattan and Sazerac at Satan's Whiskers

The last portion of the night ended at the elegant 1920s jazz club & bar Nightjar. The bar’s entrance, a nondistinct door, can be a little hard to find for the uninitiated, but thankfully, I had a knowledgeable escort to guide me.

Nightjar

The menu has a lot of very creative options which I heard were on the sweet side. In that case it’s a safer bet to go with classics. The Boulevardier was made with a base of rye and cognac, a special amaro mix including Dubonnet, Campari, and an absinthe rinse.

Boulevardier at Nightjar
The Toronto, a virile cocktail if there ever was one, came in a girly drink disguise with a large cloud of smoked candifloss garnish and a pair of cocktail cherries. It was bittersweet with a faint touch of orange blossom smoke. Still, it had a punchy kick and an unmistakable Fernet bite, the kind of taste that you hate the first time but can’t wait to go back for more later.

Toronto cocktail at Nightjar


Recently I’ve had a chance to spend a bit of time in London, currently one of the most exciting food and drink capitals. This post summarizes part of a trip that took place in April; see previous posts for Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.

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5 thoughts on “London adventures: from Satan’s Whiskers to the Nightjar

  1. Love Nightjar: on my visit in June I ended going home with a “yorkshire punch owl” that they had for sale. And a had a cocktail that came with a fortune cookie!! I didn’t go to “Satans Whiskers”(I didn’t know of it) but went to another cat-themed bar “Mayor of scaredy cat town”,close to Brick lane. I totally approve of cat-themed bars.

  2. Pingback: A study in demonology – back at Satan’s Whiskers | Tartines to Tikis

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