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London's top six winter open air bars

By Sophie Cross

London is (Tier 2) open! You can expect to find special safety measures in place and please do make sure to social distance and stay safe when you’re out and about. We recommend you double-check the opening times and booking requirements of places before you visit.

Pop Brixton

Image Credit: @popbrixton

Pop Brixton opened it’s doors five years ago as a temporary project that turned disused land into a creative space to lift local and independent businesses. Built within colourful shipping containers, it’s a fantastic place to socialise, celebrate and have drinks with friends. And the food is also insanely good. Try the delights from sensational vendors like Mama’s Jerk, Halo Burger, Love Churros and Smash Patty.

This spot isn't just a trendy bar and street food venue, it’s a space for the community to come together. It’s home to some of London’s most exciting start-ups, non-profits, craftspeople and retailers.

Open 12 noon to 11pm every day of the week.

Mercato Metropolitano, Elephant and Castle

Image Credit: @mercatometropolitano

With an area totalling 45,000 square feet and plenty of outdoor space in their garden bars, it’s easy to lose your mates in Mercato Metropolitano. There are over 40 vendors selling flavours from Italy to Japan, Columbia to Germany, Vietnam to Argentina and Mercato even has it’s own on-site micro-brewery serving craft ales and alcohol-free beer. The site itself was a disused paper factory and is a stone’s throw from Elephant and Castle tube station.

The Ship, Wandsworth

Image Credit: @theshipwandsworth

A landmark pub in London with a huge beer garden (or Shipyard, as they call it) overlooking the Thames. The Ship are ready to welcome you and your four-legged friends (it’s dog friendly) with their extensive gastropub food and drink menus and big portions. They’ve gone cashless and you’ll definitely need to book in advance if you’re popping down on the weekend.

Now taking bookings for ‘Shipmas’.

Bussey Rooftop Bar, Peckham

Image Credit: @busseyrooftopbar

Rising above the rest as one of the top drinking spots in London, climb the famous Bussey Building to get to their cool and cosy rooftop bar for winter warmers and chic cocktails. There’s table service, cashless ordering and you can pre-book covered or uncovered tables with stunning views of the city skyline. This year, Share A Slice are serving up traditional Italian pizzas from a fire-based oven and even better, for every one you buy they’ll donate one to feed someone in need.

Heat things up at Bussey Rooftop Bar with the ultimate Winter Warmer and get a delicious cocktail and blanket (yours to keep!) for just £11.

Bar Elba, Waterloo

Image Credit: @explorewithamor

For a central location with a lively vibe, Bar Elba is serving up cocktails, party packages and happy hours right next to Waterloo Station. On the food front, they have a selection of burgers, fries and nachos and their drinks menu is way more extensive from whiskey to wine, shorts to slings, Aperol to alcohol-free.

Book your tickets for their Live & Unplugged Christmas event or the Bad Santa Sing-a-Long here.

Pergola, Paddington and Olympia

Pergola Paddington and Pergola Olympia promise ‘big skies and big nights’ where you can watch the stars. They have three self-service restaurants where you can order snacks and mains with big global flavours like crispy truffle mushrooms and Swiss cheese fondue. Wash these down with a draft craft or Mince Pie Daiquiri. Book a table or daybed in advance or make sure you turn up early to bag yourself a spot.

Book tickets for Miracle on Kingdom Street at Pergola Paddington here. Cosy up in one of their Moët & Chandon Champagne Chalets, Igloos or soak up the atmosphere in their heated Bavarian-style hall.

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