Crab, cocktails and cigars

The Churchill Bar’s alfresco seafood summer pop-up

Seafood bars are the de rigueurgourmet accoutrement on London terraces this summer, so it’s in keeping with themood that a crustacean pop-up has appeared on Portman Square, at TheChurchill Bar.

Expect Loch Fyne rock oysters,dressed Devon crab and Scottish lobster cocktail on the exclusively end-of-week(Thursday, Friday and Saturday) lunchtime menu – a celebration of the best ofBritish fare. Not as patriotic, but no less delicious for it, will bethe choice of rosé champagnes and wines to match the food. Among theselection is Bollinger Rosé, 2012 Holden Manz Rosé from South Africa’sFranschhoek, and the heavenly 2012 Domaines Ott, Clos Mireille, Côtes deProvence – summer in a bottle.

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New cocktail concoctions are also onoffer, delivering modern twists on old favourites. One of them is Gin Blitz: a contemporary take on a G&T made with City of London gin, distilled onFleet Street at the first new distillery in the City for over 200years. Combined with star anise, fresh lavender flavours and house-madetonic, it promises to be a heady summer pick-me-up. Vodka devoteesmight prefer a London Iced Tea, in which vodka and gin are mixed with Cointreau,tequila, rum and lemon juice, together with house-made English Breakfast tea.

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No bar named after Winston Churchill (who graces the terrace as a life-sized bronze) would be complete without aselection of cigars. A choice of 28, including Havanas – theBehike 52 or Behike 56 – and the limited-edition Petit Belicosos by Bolivar andCohiba 1966, sits within a bespoke stained-oak humidor.

Increasingly popular as a venue for achic after-work tipple, and a grazing spot of choice for ladies who lunch, TheChurchill Bar has added a welcome alfrescostring to its bow. Let’s just hope the sun finally gets the memo that it’s summer.

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