Mixologist Richard Maxted's guide to la dolce vita in London
Insider guide by Richard Maxted, mixologist and founder of Mix & Muddle
As the creative genius behind Mix & Muddle’s incredible bespoke cocktails and a former barman at the world-famous Artesian bar at The Langham hotel, Richard knows a thing or two about London’s sprawling bar and restaurant scene.
From sleek hotels to traditional eateries, here is Richard’s pick of the best places to eat and drink in London.
The Social is an intimate laidback space, with a friendly service and an inviting drinks menu serving delicious seasonal cocktails. Tucked away in Willesden Green, it’s the kind of place you wish you had around the corner from your house. Discrete and non-flashy, you can enjoy the taste of Spain through their delicious selection of fresh and authentic tapas. On the menu, expect scrumptious patatas bravas, freshly prepared calamares and for dessert chocolate lava cake. Delight at the extensive wine list, perfect for experimenting whilst you eat.
Dandelyan at Mondrian
Located inside the cool Mondrian London hotel, Dandelyan is a feast for the eyes. Walk into the lobby area and find soft lighting, plush flamingo-pink banquettes and imposing floor to ceiling windows to enjoy a fantastic view of the Thames. The brainchild of cocktail extraordinaire, Ryan Chetiyawardana, the Dandelyan serves intriguing plant based cocktails ranging from clarified white miso syrup to concrete washed Cognac and mummified lemons. Cocktails are around £13 each.
Insider tip: By day, you can enjoy the Wyld Afternoon Tea serving up botanical bites and hand blended loose leaf tea from Camelia’s Tea House.
American Bar at The Savoy
Open for more than 125 years, The American Bar at The Savoy is the longest surviving cocktail bar in London. Frequented by American greats such as Ernest Hemingway, Marilyn Monroe and Neil Armstrong, this is a place of true splendour. With an award winning menu serving up classics with a twist, you will be amazed at the sheer variety of alcoholic drinks on offer. To take the edge off, order the famous White Lady, designed in the 1930s by legendary bartender Harry Craddocks. The cocktails here are pricey, starting at £18, but their quality and originality, paired with the immaculate setting of the bar, make the experience worth it.
Artesian at The Langham
This iconic bar at the historic hotel The Langham was named Best Bar in the World four years in a row and is where Richard received his training as barman. This bar is a veteran and star of the London cocktail scene, and its drinks menu never seizes to amaze us with its creative and quirky approach to cocktails. The atmosphere is grand but not intimidating and the cocktails are priced at £18.
Insider tip: There is a fantastic lunch menu to be enjoyed in the bar in the afternoon, and in the evening you can order small plates that have been crafted specifically to complement your cocktails.
Cocktail masterclasses with Mix & Muddle
Ginza Insider Experience
Want more cocktails? Join one of Richard’s masterclasses ‘Mix & Muddle’s Guide to Modern Mixology. After enjoying a special welcome drink, Richard will guide you through the cocktail-making process. Richard has created three bespoke cocktails for this experience, which he will show you step-by-step how to make, while explaining the ingredients, history, and cultural context behind each cocktail. Tickets from £30pp and include four full-size cocktails.
Finally, if all those cocktails have got you craving some comfort food, Richard recommends Sarracino for a late night bite in North London. It’s a rustic and family-run Neapolitan Trattoria in the charming neighbourhood of West Hampstead. On arrival, you will be instantly transported back to the Italian countryside, as you enjoy the familiar smells of great tasting Italian cuisine. Signature dishes include the glorious Gnocchi alla Sorrentina, Paccheri Genovese, and of course, their infamous classic Napoletana pizza. The informal and fun atmosphere makes this a great place to enjoy no nonsense Italian food made using the finest fresh ingredients.