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Thursday, 16 December 2010

Nightjar, Shoreditch

Best new bar of 2010: Purl? The Beaufort at The Savoy? Hawksmoor, Seven Dials? ECC? Contenders all. To that notable quartet, add a surprising diamond in the fast-food-joint rough of City Road. For my money which, as a canny Scot, I’m loathe to part with, £8.50 invested at Nightjar nets impressive returns. Order Deep Sea and dive into the divine: a Sazerac-y muddle of Jensen’s Old Tom Gin, sweet vermouth, absinthe and home infused orange bitters, this wonderful wet suits those who crave consistently superior cocktails. Elegantly presented in antique stemware, everything this seductive subterranean charmer’s dapper drinksmiths turn their capable hands to impresses. Remember The Maine? Few will forget Nightjar’s flawless version of the film noir-era classic. Islands In The Stream? Well, hello Dolly! This rum-based highball is a flirty little belter. Live at the mic, foxy dames coat the walls in honey, otherwise a ragtime, jazz and big band swing soundtrack sets the sepia tone at this fair approximation of a Chicago blind pig, Prohibition era code for a speakeasy. Al Capone? I didn’t order one but, undoubtedly, the bar’s savvy shakers could oblige. If you plan to get massacred on St. Valentine’s day, step inside! But by February, expect lengthy queues; Nightjar is that good.    
129 -131 City Rd EC1 7253 4101www.barnightjar.com