Mayfair’s Grosvenor Square returns to the elegance of the Roaring Twenties with the arrival of The Luggage Room. On the corner of the square and part of 5 star hotel London Marriott Grosvenor Square, the luxurious speakeasy bar is perfect for a cosy, expertly-mixed cocktail.
As the name suggests, The Luggage Room was once the storage room for the guests in the hotel above. Designed in Art Deco style, the bar features sumptuous leather seating in chocolate and cream and the walls reflect the exquisite trunks of years gone by with metal studs and checkered patterns. Vuitton and Goyard trunk enthusiasts will approve! The initials on the tables also reference the dapper ‘Bentley Boys’, who made a name for themselves zooming around 1920s Mayfair in their Bentley sports cars.
Bar Manager Abdulai Kpekawa, formerly of Roux at The Pembury, has created a well-edited collection of heritage cocktails, including cobblers, cups, martinis and punches. We were seated in an intimate nook and immediately brought a delicious welcome drink of sweet and fruity Fish House Punch, placed on chic black and gold monogrammed napkins.
We munched on addictive root vegetable crisps and gourmet mixed nuts while perusing the menu. The cocktails are thoughtfully categorised and while it can be difficult to choose between the tempting concoctions, the list was not overly exhaustive.
I started with the interestingly named Penicillin – Johnnie Walker, lemon juice, honey syrup, ginger and Talisker (£13.50). I asked Abdulai what made the cocktail have a curious medicinal taste and it is down to the Talisker – a peaty single malt Scotch Whisky from the Isle of Skye. Steven went for a classic sweet Manhattan – Rye Whiskey, sweet Vermouth and Agnostura Bitters (£12.50).
I was then tempted by the Boston Cobbler – Port, Calvados, lemon, orange and pineapple juice (£13.50). Cobblers date back to around 1830, however these cocktails, made of a base spirit, sugar and fresh fruit, seem to be having ‘a moment’ in London right now. The Boston Cobbler was freshing, juicy and potent, served over finely crushed ice in a chilled silver cup with a metal straw.
Steven tried an Aviation – Tanqueray, Maraschino Luxardo, lemon juice and violette (£12.50). This was another smooth, perfectly blended classic with a fragrant taste from the violette and a boozy cherry at the bottom of the glass.
The bar plates are also suitably traditional, comforting and well-presented. We loved the Potted ‘Two Hoots’ Barkham Blue Cheese, Spiced Cider Pear Chutney, Sour Dough Chards (£12). The generous pot of cheese was silky smooth, flavoursome and perfect for dipping. The Crisp Basil Bread (£7) was a tasty, light snack served with an addictive sweet tomato chutney.
Scratchings, Sweet Apple Sauce (£6) came in their own mini frying basket and were well-cooked but quite a challenge on the teeth. Knawing furiously on a thick piece of crackling is somewhat at odds with the refinement of the bar and a bit of a conversation-stopper. Other hearty snacks include Melton Mowbray Pork Pies, Salmon Scotch Eggs with Caviar Sour Cream and Marinated Anchovies.
The Luggage Room is a great addition to the Mayfair bar scene, with grown-up cocktails, an intimate setting and charming staff. Just a short stroll from Selfridges and the Bond Street stores, I can see The Luggage Room being a haunt for post-shopping cocktails.
For more information, visit: www.luggageroom.co.uk
Chérie City was a guest of The Luggage Room
Photos by Chérie City and The Luggage Room