Clarendon Cocktail Cellar

Clarendon Cocktail Cellar

There’s nothing I like more than stumbling, no pun intended, on an unusual restaurant and bar.  When I worked in London Mr J and I would sometimes meet up after work for something to eat and a quick drink.

One of my offices was near Pimlico so we decided to try out the Clarendon Cocktail Cellar one evening as it sits beneath one of my favourite small chain of Hotels, the Artist Residence.

I can tell you now, we loved it.

History of Clarendon Cocktail Cellar

The small chain of Artist Residence Hotels are owned by Owner Justin Salisbury who started running the family guesthouse in Brighton in 2008 at the age of 20 (with the help of his girlfriend Charlie, now wife) when his mother, who ran the guesthouse, suffered an accident (thankfully, she made a good recovery). 

The guesthouse didn’t stand out in Brighton and needed some low-cost renovation, so he invited local artists to decorate rooms in exchange for a stay. Guests loved the resulting bohemian atmosphere and Justin and Charlie extended into the house next door. They now have hotels in Cornwall, London, and Oxford.

The Clarendon Cocktail Cellar is tucked away in the dark recesses of an old Victorian pub which has been converted into the London Artist Residence.

Today the Cellar has been transformed into a quirky yet cosy cocktail bar that you wouldn’t realise was there from the outside.

Not only can you enjoy the wonderful cocktails, but you can also take in some art as they have teamed up with Lawrence Alkin Gallery in Soho to bring fresh new artwork to the Cellar every month.

Cocktails at the Clarendon Cocktail Cellar

But now onto the important stuff, the cocktails. The cocktails have an overarching theme and when we went it was films. Amongst the cocktails on offer were “Kill Bill”, “Airplane”, “Scream”, “Titanic” and “Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”. The cocktails are priced at between £8 and £11 each.

I had the gorgeous “Titanic” which is Rose, Plymouth Gin, Dry Vermouth Blend, Hibiscus, Sea Salt, Lemon, Soda. And, it has an iceberg floating in it. A piece of hand cut ice from a huge ice block they have behind the bar.

Mr J had the “Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” – St George ‘Terroir’ Gin, Aalborg Aquavit, Cocchi Americano, Lingonberry Jam, Lemon Celery Bitters.

As we had only popped in for a quick drink before dinner we just kept it to one cocktail each. Although, I could have quite easily worked my way through the cocktail menu.

If you’re looking for somewhere slightly different I’d highly recommend a visit. It’s also worth noting that on Monday to Thursdays between 4pm and 7pm they have “Aperitivo” where they serve unlimited nibbles with the cocktails. And, the cocktails are all priced at £5 during this time.

I’d loved to hear where your favourite cocktail bars are.  And, if you’d like to read more about the Artist Residence check out my Winter Weekend in Brighton

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