Bird of Smithfield recently launched of their brand new cocktail menu and invited me along to sample all of the delicious creations on offer. (I know – dream job right?!)
I knew we were in for a treat as the bar and restaurant is owned and run by Alan Bird who is the former head chef of The Ivy, one of my all time favourite restaurants. After dropping off our bags at Hotel Malmaison (review here) we made the short walk past Smithfield Market to the venue.
Bird of Smithfield is set across 5 floors in a smart Georgian townhouse in Farringdon. It boasts not one but three bars in total at rooftop, ground floor and basement level as well as a private dining room and a restaurant. For our evening of cocktail quaffing we headed downstairs to the Birdcage bar.
The Birdcage is suitably decorated with glowing candles, glittering birdcages and beautiful blooms.
It’s dark and sophisticated but there’s a cool hint of quirkiness to the place too which made me feel right at home. The glossy wall art, for example, shows beautifully dressed women in stilettos sprawled across the floor, almost like ‘Vogue does crime scene photos’. N and I had fun debating whether they were murder victims or had just got hammered and fallen over (we’re quite the art connoisseurs!).
We were lucky enough to snag a table for two in the cosy seating area at the back, perfect for date night,though there are a couple of larger couches too if you’re in a group. (Tip – get there early as these go fast!)
We had been told that chief mixologist Stan had been hard at work concocting the exciting new cocktail menu. He had experimented with elements such as smoke, candied fruits and burnt herbs to create intricate layers and complex flavours, something we were both keen to experience.
Soon the drinks began to arrive. My favourite was the Caged Heart, a fruity vodka based cocktail with orange, Pedro Ximenex, green chartreuse, physalis and plum bitters. It’s basically your perfect Summer tipple, ramped up Mad Men style into something a little more suave and sophisticated.
The Cointreauversial was sharp and intoxicating with Cointreau, Remy Martin VSOP cognac, apricot brandy, angostura and a dark Cointreau chocolate. The LDN was much too strong for my palate with Bold London spirit, bitters and an Aperol sorbet, but N enjoyed his.
The most fun and theatrical drink of the evening was the Lost Treasure which is a real showstopper. I recommend that you order it for your table if there’s a big group of you, as the friendly staff will put on a show for you.
First they bring out a tray with tumblers and sweeties.
Next comes a cage containing a golden skull which billows with dry ice smoke.
The skull is actually a vessel containing Knob Creek bourbon which is poured into the shot glass. Then Kah tequila foam infused with green apple and lime zest, nutmeg and egg white is siphoned on top, before a candied apple slice and a pirate flag are added with a flourish.
If you find yourself in the Farringdon area (or just enjoy a really well made cocktail) then make sure Bird of Smithfield is on your ‘must visit’ list… and once you’ve been let me know which cocktail I should try next time!
Address: 26 Smithfield Street, London, EC1A 9LB
Nearest Tube: Farringdon
Opening Times: 8.00am – 12am Monday to Friday, 5pm – 1am Saturday, Closed on Sundays
This post is not sponsored however I did receive complimentary drinks on the night. As per my Disclaimer all views are honest and my own.
Lifestyle & vegan food blogger
Peterborough | UK
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