IT’S Thursday evening in the cobbled alleyways around St Paul’s and all around City workers are bursting from over-polished lobbies, looking around desperately for the nearest drink.
Then there’s the question that brings the stampede to a screeching halt: “well, where are we meeting?” The traditional boozers are already buzzing with beery bankers and the restaurants are booked up with the smug and organised.
Hidden away at the end of the Dickensian doors that line Grovedale Court, off Bow Lane, Four Sisters is your answer.
Billed as a “mischievous, whimsical” escape from the City with the essence of a Victorian-style gentleman’s club, Four Sisters is the lively but still relatively obscure cocktail bar sorely needed at this end of town.
True to its tagline, the interiors do err on the side of whimsy, with floral wallpapers, gilt-framed mirrors, plush velvet coverings on banquet seating and up-cycled knick knacks and curiosities cluttering the bar and bookshelves. It’s a cosy atmosphere likely to do well as drinkers head back indoors over the coming months.
Those familiar with sister(s) bar Four Sisters in Islington will have great expectations of the cocktail list and are unlikely to be disappointed. The Market to Glass menu is entirely seasonal; a tequila, lime, jalapeno and grapefruit combo we tried in late summer has been replaced by concoctions around cognac and aromatic bitters.
There is also a dedicated menu for new wave, classic and forgotten cocktails.
Staff are well-versed on the weekly changing menu, however, so if you’re nonplussed by all the new combinations, just let them know your flavour and they’ll do the rest.
Food-wise, it would be fair to say the Four Sisters’ menu is patently aware of its market. For business lunchers and those who have to return to the office at some point, there are hearty sandwiches or more substantial meals, again with a seasonal nod.
As for evening, when bar eats usually serves the sole purpose of lining the stomach, a selection of grazing platters will keep groups happy and upright.
Four Sisters: 5 Groveland Court EC4M 9EF