Editor, Mandy Morello was sent on a mission to find the best and coolest outside bars in London and came back with this list.
It’s very rare that London ever gets a spot of sunshine. But when it does, I search my skull, trying to remember where’s the best place to drink outside. I head to the internet for some help. Surely google knows? Sites like Time Out and Londonist send me down a path that I just don’t want to go (I actually got shooed away from one recommended bar for my all-black, leather-clad attire). Sometimes I end up in the local ‘Spoons after thinking too damn hard that my brain almost melted. So, after not being able to find a reliable source of information, I went out and explored London to find the best affordable outside bars in London.
Tucked up on the hills of Highgate, lives this little gem. Boasting Bloody Marys, BBQs and secret Libertines gigs, this bar should never be forgotten about when the clouds begin to disappear. Plus, anywhere with a jukebox gets my vote.
I came across this place one drunken evening and thought it was just a small bar. Little did I know the bar led on to what could be the best displayed beer gardens I’d ever seen. The drinks maybe a little tarty, but all feels good when I’m sat with a bucket of beer, soaking up the rays.
Dalston Roof Park, Dalston
This one is popular, and probably on everyone’s outside bar list because it’s a great roof. Londoners like roofs. It’s always packed but a good place if you manage to find a seat. It’s always good to check what’s on as there’s quite often a really good event happening when the sun is out.
How I love a place that lets me hang out on the roof, and then, when it gets a bit nippy, a pool table will be waiting for me downstairs. Smokers beware though. Walking up the many flights of stairs is a bit of a challenge. I almost die.
This one is for the beer lovers. A brewery/pizzeria/outside bar area. Not only is the view of the lock great, but the beers are too. Plus, if you get hungry on your doomed mission to catch a tan, the pizza is pure quality.
This place takes a little slice of the Angel sun with its great front area. It’s great for impressing people, so I’d recommend taking a date that you want to have your filthy way with. But not so great for hangovers due to its formal charm.
This beer garden is always quite chilled to sit in, especially when I’m hanging out of my arse. There’s even a section of this outside area that feels like a treehouse, complete with a view of the Kentish rooftops. That’s al I want whilst I sip a quality craft beer and think about last night’s regrets.
The Lock Tavern has got it all – great drinks, live music, rooftop, beer garden and great location. Quite often they have a great band on the weekends. The only sad thing is I always feel like they shut too early. But I guess there’s always Joe’s….
This one doesn’t have so much of a ‘great’ outdoors area compared to the others. But I’ve had many a drink on the roof of The Hawley Arms, pissed as a fart and covered in a stranger’s birthday cake (don’t ask). Due to its small spacing issues, it is hard to get a seat but it is so great to hang out with friends and pass the time if you do find one – especially when a band is playing.
When it’s sunny, the whole of Camden heads to this pub so I’d recommend going for a bevy early and squatting to keep your seat. There’s a great summer selection on tap including more that one cider. The pub food is also a reason to stay… perhaps forever?