15 London Bars To Drink Alone In
It’s good to venture out of your living room, sometimes.
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Mark’s Bar, Hix, Soho.
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There’s not many places you can get a martini in Soho at 3pm, but Mark’s Bar is open all afternoon for your quiet-but-fancy day-drinking needs. It’s dark and cosy whatever the weather, and has soft leather sofas that are perfect for melting into with your book.
The Lyceum Tavern, Covent Garden
Hideaway wooden booths are what makes The Lyceum Tavern one of London’s best Sam Smiths pubs, and are a haven from tourist mad Covent Garden. Get there early to secure yourself one and take advantage of their speedy wifi, or just stare into space and enjoy your pint.
The French House, Soho
The French House gets a bit lairy most evenings, but go there early on, sit at bench along the massive main window and watch the world go by with a wine or a lovely Breton cider.
Peckham Refreshment Rooms, Peckham
Long communal tables and plenty of stools at the bar make blending into the crowd at Peckham Refreshment Rooms a cinch. Go there during the day, in fact, and you’ll struggle to see many people not on their own, freelancer favourite that it is.
The Carpenter’s Arms, Shoreditch
Shoreditch is showy as fuck, and as such , but tucked just off Brick Lane, The Carpenter’s Arms is an excellent escape from the Sunday crowds. Equip yourself with a paper and a “you can’t sit with me” glare.
Hawksmoor Spitalfields Bar, Shoreditch
Cocktail bars can often feel stuffy, but at Hawksmoor’s Spitalfields bar you’ll find a more relaxed atmosphere and an ever-changing cocktail menu that’s up there with a best of them. Bag a seat at the bar and you might just get chatting with their mega-friendly and knowledgeable staff, too.
The Palmerston, East Dulwich
You don’t have to worry about hogging a whole table to if you park yourself at one of the mini benches that encircle The Palmerston. Get a pint of lager and a bowl of salty fries to get the best out of these spots that are made for solo ventures.
The Salusbury, Queen’s Park
The perfect quiet spot complete with good dogs, nice Italian food, sometimes even decent eavesdropping.
The Peckham Pelican, Peckham
Morley Von Sternberg
With its proximity to Camberwell Arts College the Pelican is often filled with loners, deep in their thoughts. The kind of place that won’t give a hoot if you spend a couple of hours dragging out a wine or a bottle of local craft beer while you lose yourself in a good book.
The Talbot, De Beauvoir
This cosy residential pub gets pretty busy on a Friday or Saturday night, but any other time is an excellent home-from-home when you fancy a quick drink outside of your actual home.
69 Colebrooke Row, Angel
Long considered one of London’s best cocktail bars, this small, tucked away bar is well worth ducking into if you want to enjoy an excellent drink, undisturbed.
The Prospect of Whitby, Wapping
This ancient pub has attracted drinkers, alone or otherwise, for centuries and you couldn’t find a better spot for a riverside pint by yourself than the long, comfy benches that run around The Prospect of Whitby’s outdoor area.
Walking down the stairs at Brasserie Zédel is like stepping back in time into some sultry, ’30s novel about glamorous people who sit at bars with an old fashioned or a martini, the weight of the world on their shoulders and Film Noir looks on their faces. Be one of those people for an hour at Bar Américain, and then scoot into the brasserie next door for a prixe fix steak haché and fries, if you’re feeling wild.
Sager and Wilde, Hackney
Sager and Wilde
Bar-side stools are the best friend of the lone drinker, and Sager and Wilde, a wine bar that’s casual enough to just feel like a really nice pub, has loads of them. Choose a glass from their massive wine list, or got retro-but-classy with a sherry and tonic.
The cosy cafe-style tables in this brand new Spitalfields brasserie create an atmosphere that’s relaxed and unintimidating, so is especially well-suited for solo outings. Enjoy their house bellini, a mix of pear, cranberry, vanilla and prosecco with the sun streaming through the art deco windows for a late morning treat.