Worship Street Whistling Shop serves up some of the best cocktails I've ever had in London. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy mojitos and peach bellinis like every other person, but sometimes, I'm just in the mood for something a little bit different, and WSWS delivers that on all counts.
Located in Shoreditch, smack dab between Old Street and Moorgate tube stations, the bar's dimly lit Victoriana/steampunk feel makes it one of my favorite places to cozy up in during the winter months. I recently celebrated my birthday there and it didn't disappoint: in one corner, a DJ (with the most fantastical pouf and black eyeliner imaginable) was spinning rockabilly classics, and we ordered delicious cheese and meat platters to share.
The drinks menu (which is devised in their in-house lab, which resembles a mad scientist's) changes frequently, though my particular favorite, Panacea (a blend of whisky, honey, sage dust, lavender and topped with whipped egg white), seems to (thankfully) be a standby. Two of those last Friday and I was barely left standing.
Now, I must warn that WSWS isn't for everyone. I've read some pretty hilarious negative reviews of this place on TimeOut and think that those patrons should have headed next door to Blueberry, where they could have had all the saccharine, sickly-sweet cocktails their heart so desired. Just sayin'.
As someone who's deeply attuned (as you all know) to high levels of customer service, I think one of WSWS's best selling points is its bar staff. Friendly, laid-back, and knowledgeable, they're always happy to advise on drinks and will often whip something up for you on a whim if you can't decide. Once, I ordered something I decided just wasn't for me after all, and it was quickly whisked away and replaced by a Panacea (I told you I loved it!).
WSWS is definitely one of the first places I take friends from out of town and I highly recommend it - just don't go if you're a jerk and expecting to be served a pink strawberry daiquiri.