One of the things you’ll probably spot when you approach the Hyatt Regency London The Churchill Hotel is the terrace of The Churchill Bar which looks positively sparkly on a grey day.
I was last here in 2015, to sample the ‘Never Give In’ cocktail – a heady mix of green chartreuse, absinthe and smouldering rosemary. It’s served in an elegant and rather theatrical fashion – as the glass dome is lifted off the thin-stemmed champagne coupe – and swirls of smoke escape into the air.
But is this bar still as fabulous?
During our recent stay in one of the new Regency Executive Suites at The Hyatt Regency The Churchill, we popped down to find out.
I remember the bar being lovely all year-round and the setting is just as lovely as I remembered. Inside, the bar is still the elegant mix of blue banquette seating and Art-Deco fixtures, designed by Spinocchia Freund design company.
Outside, on The Churchill Terrace – where we were heading – they were still embracing the retro ski chalet theme with sheep skin rugs, vintage skis and icicles on the door. It felt cold enough to be in an actual ski resort – there’s no need to remove your jackets here!
I’ll be honest, if you’re visiting The Churchill Bar during winter, you’ll need to wear some layers. But once you’re handed woolly blankets and hot water bottles (which we put inside our coats), you’ll be suitably toasty (there are also heaters overhead).
We were seated next to Lawrence Holofcener’s sculpture of a young Winston Churchill who still sits on the terrace, I hear staff place a fresh rose in his lapel every morning, just as his wife Clementine did.
Right, cocktail time…
BC went for the Fig Old Fashioned which was a blend of Makers Mark Bourbon, home-made rosemary syrup and Churchill Bitters. It also had a ripened confit fig half and an orange twist in the glass. He’s a big Old Fashioned fan and this got his seal of approval (and mine).
In fact, I became quite envious as it turned out The Churchill Bar Fizz wasn’t quite to my taste that night. Don’t get me wrong, this blend of Sacred Craft Gin, Pol Roger Champagne, hibiscus tea syrup (and hibiscus bitters) with muddled Granny Smith apples and an egg white and lemon juice foam really was quite lovely. But I think I’ll save The Churchill Bar Fizz for when I go back on a summer’s day.
Definitely give it a try. Especially if you like gin, and the idea of a limoncello sugar which coats the glass rim.
There was just one thing missing. You need some snacks to go with cocktails, right? We had those cheese bread sticks which are no less naughty but nice than they were last time.
There was no fondue this time around (do try this if you get the chance) but we did try some scotch quail eggs which come with a tartare sauce and were seriously good. I highly recommend you try these.
The staff here were as fantastic as ever (we loved chatting to our waiter who had recently moved to London from Venezuela and was absolutely charming). The vibe is still sophisticated, pretty and very romantic too. Why change something if it’s not broken?
The cocktails aren’t for gulping – house cocktails start from £16 – but the experience and setting you get at The Churchill Bar Terrace is totally worth a visit. It’s sleek yet relaxed and it’s home to a fantastic range of non-alcoholic cocktails, digestives and spirits, including all sorts of top notch gins.
We’re big fans of The Churchill. Have you been?