The Folly

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Words by Jane Ryan on 12-Sep-2013

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Address: 41 Gracechurch Street, London, EC3V 0BT, United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)207 283 7618
Website: View bar's website
Hours: Mon-Wed 7.30am-11pm; Thurs-Fri 7.30am-1am; Sat 10am-Midnight; Sun 10am-7pm
Door: Open door
Style: Cocktail bar
Recommended for: Cocktails
Price guide: Middling
Food: Full menu


Closest Tube Station: Monument

This open-plan, gigantic, split-level venue from Drake & Morgan, owners of the The Drift and The Refinery among others, is a City hub of cocktails, food and wine. Despite its size, it manages to retain a quirky, independent and escapist streak that helps you forget you're in the heart of a concrete jungle.

The shabby-chic decor, with rough wooden tables, church-style candelabras and designer wallpaper helps separate it from other cookie-cutter chains, and with its floor-to-ceiling length windows it stays buzzing and bright. Like the other Drake & Morgan venues this bar can become rammed, but while it verges on raucous it's tamed by the diners seated around. And what is particularly impressive is the service and quality of the drinks during peak times.

The menu boasts a charming 'colour wheel' which divides the list up by flavour, with 'punch', 'dry', 'tart' and 'sweet' as the main categories, though the chain also prides itself on its calorie-counted 'skinny' list. On our last visit we tried a BBQ Whisky Sour made with Nikka whisky from the barrel, fresh lemon, sugar, egg white and crispy bacon, which was incredibly tasty and well-balanced. We also tried a Cannonball Rum, a successfully tart/dry drink made with tequila and mezcal, papaya, fresh lime, agave and a cayenne pepper sugar rim.

All in all a good venue with a fun venue: just don't visit if crowds aren't your thing.

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