London's Coolest Gin Joints, Shaken Not Stirred

Gin and tonics, martinis, Tom Collins— we love ‘em. And, in celebration of all things boozy, (and aptly timed to World Gin Day) we’ve successfully sipped our way across London, in search of the best gin joints in town.
Doing all the legwork (which was, of course, so arduous), we’ve tried an endless lineup of martinis and drank a lot of G&Ts. And now, we're ready to deliver you the guide of the best gin bars around.
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Bottoms up!
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Photo: Courtesy of Marks Bar
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Portobello Star
At the Portobello Star, it’s not just any gin you’ll get — it’s their own. Brewing it and bottling it upstairs, they vow that their Portobello Road No 171 Dry Gin is fit for any connoisseur. Low-key and laidback, they serve their own spirit up in mean martinis and generous G&Ts, to a youngish crowd sporting all the latest streetwear fads. For a more sophisticated experience, or a seriously cool party idea, book in upstairs at The Ginstitute for a tasting and creating master class.

The Portobello Star, 171 Portobello Road, Notting Hill, London, W11 2DY; 020 722 98016.

Photo: Courtesy of Portobello Star
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The Star At Night
Nestled in the centre of Soho, The Star At Night is home to The London Gin Club — an exclusive club, dedicated to the enjoyment of gin. Committed to creating the perfect gin and tonic, the bar houses over 50 types of gin, all served in the signature “Gin Copa” glass, to achieve the perfect infusion. There’s an art to alcohol, you know.

Star At The Night, 22 Great Chapel Street, London, W1F 8FR; 020 7494 2488.

Photo: Courtesy of The Star At Night
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69 Colebrooke Row
Tucked away on the backstreets of Islington is 69 Colebooke Row, the ultimate 1920s-style gin bar. Complete with a pianist tinkering out the old jazz tunes, and with cocktails even the most seasoned gin drinkers will find impressive. We advise booking a table as this joint is a little on the small side.

69 Colebrooke Row, London, N1 8AA; 07540 528593.

Photo: Courtesy of 69 Colebrooke Row
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Mark's Bar at the Hix
Arguably, one of the coolest bars in London, Mark’s Bar at The Hix is the destination of choice for many gin aficionados. Located underneath the restaurant in Soho, the bar has a moodier vibe, appealing to a crowd of twenty-somethings, who flock in search of an excellent G&T. The gourmet bar snacks are worth stocking up on, too.

Mark's Bar, The Hix, 66-70 Brewer Street, London, W1F 9UP; 020 7292 3518.

Photo: Courtesy of Mark's Bar
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The Arch Bar
With over 35 different bottles behind the bar, The Arch Bar is a favourite gin-joint for many. From the London-classics, to a selection of more unique distils, it’s far too easy to stay sampling the menu all night. Complete with stunning views of the Wellington Arch, it’s a classy place with classy cocktails to match. What’s more, twice a month, the bar plays host to Gin & Jazz — a retro night devoted to fine gin and even finer jazz.

The Arch Bar, 1 Hamilton Place, London, W1J 7QY, 020 7318 8649.

Photo: Courtesy of The Arch Bar
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Dukes Bar at the Dukes Hotel
Don’t even think about drinking martinis anywhere else. Famed and frequented by author, Ian Fleming, Dukes is the heart of “shaken, not stirred.” Make a pilgramage to 007 land and experience for yourself the understatedly elegant interiors, posh gins, plump olives, and organic lemon slices. With a relaxed vibe, the drinks here aren’t cheap, but they’re really, really good. Go for the Fleming 89— the tipple that unites Bond and the bar.

Dukes, St. James’s Place, London, SW1A 1NY; 020 7491 4840.

Photo: Courtesy of Dukes
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The Connaught
To go to The Connaught hotel is a little like stepping back in time. Shimmering in silver and mirror décor, the bar is beautiful, and channels a deliciously decadent '20s vibe — but, it’s the martini trolley that we swing by for. Stirred, and never shaken, The Connaught’s menu of martinis is extensive, and all too alluring. From vanilla to liquorice, and lavender to grapefruit, just one would be silly, wouldn’t it?

The Connaught, Carlos Place, Mayfair, London, W1K 2AL; 020 7499 7070.

Photo: Courtesy of The Connaught
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Graphic
Graphic in Soho is the perfect place for a gin-based nightcap. To add something a little extra into the mix, the bar houses an urban art collection— so think of it as part art gallery, part booze-up. Stocked with over 180 gins, It easily scores a reputation for being one of London’s most commendable gin joints and with six different types of G&T on the menu, it’s time to find your favourite.

Graphic, 4 Golden Square, London, W1F 9HT; 0207 287 9241.

Photo: Courtesy of Graphic
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