Contributing editor Mike Peake on where to down some fizz this 31 December
1 Champagne & Oyster Bar, Liberty
There’s nowhere more plush to kick off your Champagne-based shenanigans, and you’ve every excuse to start over lunch, too – this ultra-cool central London eatery shuts at 4pm, leaving you time to plan dinner and the mother of all bar crawls.
This trendy eatery was formed by two protégés of chef Raymond Blanc, and is as highly regarded for Champagne as it is for food. At the last count, they had 88 different types by the bottle.
3 Belga Queen
Odd name, simple concept – oysters, seafood, champers and a setting that makes you feel a bit like you’re in a sumptuous European palace, albeit a sub-aquatic one. That’ll be the waterfall splashing down the wall, then!
4 Riva Bar
Named somewhat bizarrely after 1970s football star Luigi Riva, this achingly cool spot in the Mitte district has the slight feel of a subway station, in a good way. Think Hoxton hipness rather than Fifth Avenue style.
5 The Bollinger Bar, The Balmoral
Scotland draws some 5 million lively Hogmanay (New Year) revellers each year and has bags of wintry charm. This cool corner of a very posh hotel, The Balmoral – one of Rocco Forte’s, no less – is elegant, refined and no place for drunks in kilts.
6 Dry Martini
Sit back on stylish leather banquettes as bowtieclad waiters bring you an array of Champagne cocktails to try. This fantastic bar also offers martinis in about 100 different forms, hence the name – “raspberry” or “jalapeno” flavour anyone?
7 Le Bar, Hotel George V
Recently named one of the world’s 100 best bars, this sumptuous, mahogany-decked drinking hole is the place you’d expect to see Omar Sharif having a swift one with Sophia Loren. Old-school elegance and total indulgence in glorious fashion.
8 Library Bar, The Central Hotel
Described by the Guardian as the city’s best-kept secret, this place on Exchequer Street has the rich feel of a warm, old-fashioned pub. Lots of leather, wood and old books make it the perfect spot for winter bubbly, especially when the fire’s on.
Rumour has it Mick Jagger celebrated his 100th birthday in this super-cool club. But don’t let that put you off, this spot is right in the heart of town, and is the place to be seen. Some have noted that the bar staff are “well sexy”, too.
Arguably the best nightspot in the whole of Poland, this local institution draws the beautiful people for the Champagne, the food (Asian meets Italian) and the dancing. Expect about three DJs to be performing on a typical night.
1 PLAC PISUDSKIEGO, TEL: +48 223 237 600