Shoreditch and Hoxton remain two of London's most popular suburbs for drinking, dancing and dining. The home of lounge bars, cocktails bars, live music bars, good old fashioned pubs and DJ dance music bars and clubs, East London has some of the best bars the capital has to offer. Whether you're on a girls' night out, a birthday celebration, post-work drinks, weekend trashbag shenanigans, or looking for a quite hidden gem of a bar, Shoreditch is London's number one suburb for top nights out in town.
Shoreditch / Bar / Cuisine: Pizza
Following the success of Bounce Farringdon in the City of London, the Bounce Shoreditch bar, restaurant and haven for mayhem draws inspiration from the authenticity of ping pong as a high society parlour game, juxtaposed with the rich culture of urban graffiti style. This blurs the lines between street and fine art. Throw in iridescent UV lights, a load of fun-loving Londoners who are up for a collective good time, and you have yourself a riotous night out in London.
The Book Club
Shoreditch / Bar / Cuisine: Modern International
A relative new kid on the Shoreditch block that fuses together elements of cafe culture, high brow intellectualism, ravey davey dancing, and killer cocktails for a one-stop shop for bar, club, restaurant hedonists. If you like art, if you like music, if you like fashion and beautiful faces, then why aren't you there right now?! Shoredtich just got a little bit better.
Shoreditch / Bar / Cuisine: English
Again, the words 'speak easy' and 'Prohibition Era' come into play and again, it's an underground cocktail bar. This cocktail bar is even more hidden than all other cocktail bars on this list with nothing more than a small plaque to give any indication you've arrived. Bygone era cocktails - using house-created liqueurs, bitters & botanicals - coupled by the rattling high octane rhythms of live jazz, swing, tap & blues.
Shoreditch / Bar /
"Finally, some common sense, and what comfort! The place will never be overcrowded, which means no jostling or squashing. For once you won't have to exchange bodily fluids to get a drink. And wow! A bar where everyone gets to sit down? If you thought it not possible, I tell you it is." Kind words from our bar critic who visited this new basement cocktail bar on Hoxton Square recently. Most definitely a Shoreditch cocktail bar for grown ups.
The Blues Kitchen
Shoreditch / Bar / Restaurant / Club / Cuisine: American
Shoreditch's own juicy cut of burly Americana does exactly what it says on the tin, serving up live blues bands, jam sessions and DJs for your ears most nights of the week, and down-home bluesy bites for your taste-buds every day. Jambalaya, chilli, burgers, smoke chicken and ribs are all on offer, as, at weekends, is that most famous blues staple...er...brunch ("Woke up this morning, life treatin' me mean, so went out for a cup of tea, and some fresh Eggs Florentine"). Rooms with private bars and personal DJ booths are available for party hire.
Shoreditch / Bar /
Setting sail after a year-long dry-run as a pop-up on Hackney's Broadway Market, hipster hangout Portside Parlour represents Shoreditch's latest attempt to wrest back its crown of cool from Dalston and Camberwell. Nautically-themed, with a tasteful cargo of funky flotsam scattered around to fulfil the shabby chic tat quotient, the maritime mood even pervades the extensive menu of inventive cocktails - the shot of squid ink in the 'Calamaritini' being prime example. Two more floors and a more extensive food offering are promised later in the year.
The Crown & Shuttle
Shoreditch / Bar / Cuisine: Pub
In London we're somewhat starved of beer gardens, so when this bar/pub launched, it combined a great range of beers and ales with a large, and beautiful, outdoor area for a welcome addition to Shoreditch High Street. The Crown and Shuttle was a strip club in a previous life but there are no signs of that now. Instead you'll be greeted by comfy mismatched furnishings, exposed brick work and weather-beaten wood, and a barrel of beer the size of a small silo. The beer garden is big, quirky and rustic and, importantly, keeps the sun until the stars, and the heaters, come out. Great nibbles too.
Shoreditch / Restaurant / Cuisine: International
Far Rockaway on Curtain Road aims to channel New York's urban culture to the Shoreditch triangle. The full throttle design scheme includes original works by neon artist Andy Doig and street artists Xenz, Above, Cranio, Cept and Guy Denning; a DJ booth fashioned out of boomboxes, and a comic book library with over 4000 DC and Marvel issues for you to peruse. As one might expect, there is also a plenitude of American favourites to enjoy, including frozen margaritas, coke glazed baby-back ribs, and pizza by the slice.
The Hoxton Pony
Shoreditch / Bar / Restaurant / Club / Cuisine: British
The Hoxton Pony boasts some of the best cocktails in the whole of London, let alone Shoreditch. The food is 'propa east end grub' which includes 'bangers and mash', 'fish n chips' and 'slow roasted pork belly'. The decor is fresh bold and extravagent, with post box red tables, black leather chairs and two impressive bars. The whole venue is ridiculously intoxicating (a bit like the cocktails) but if you just want to dance and have a fabulous time, then The Hoxton Pony is for you!
Shoreditch / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: Modern European
A relaxed spot to play a few games of table football while munching on some homely chorizo sandwiches by day and a lively venue to tackle an extensive continental beer and cocktails menu by night, Bar Kick (pictured above) manages to score highly at both ends of the pitch. With an ample number of widescreen TVs and atmospheric flags hanging from the walls, it is Shoreditch's prime location to watch live football, but be warned - arrive very early to catch any glimpse of the remaining World Cup matches.
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