Without a doubt, one of my favourite places to grab a quick cocktail after work is Adventure Bar. Either their Clapham North branch or the one in Covent Garden. It doesn’t matter. They’re both fun, the service is fantastic, the playlist is pretty immense and the cocktail choice is awesome too. The Clapham North branch has barmen singing on tables to Britney Spears and me and my group are classed as regulars in the Covent Garden branch and can pretty much walk in and order “my usual” like they do in Eastenders. Honestly, I have zero to complain about.
So when I saw that the Adventure Bar group had opened Tonight Josephine, a new bar in Waterloo, ie, close enough to my work to make it one of my regular after work drinking spots, I knew I was gonna have to check it out straight away.
Pink. It’s really bloody pink. Everything is pink.
Aside from that, the bar is called Tonight Josephine after the wife of Napoleon. The story goes that when Napoleon took to having many affairs, she took a “fuck it” attitude and took lovers herself, threw many wild parties, and lived a very lavish lifestyle. When Josephine joined Napoleon the night before a battle, he rebuffed her advances with “not tonight Josephine”. They finally split up, she left, and he apparently loved her until his death, his last word was supposedly her name.
Now imagine that story put into the interior of a bar.
There’s pink, there’s glitter, there’s marble and it’s almost as Instagrammable as the famous Clerkenwell Grind.
Weirdly, my favourite bit of interior was the loos. Each door has the mugshot of a celebrity, and inside each cubicle is the best wallpaper I have ever seen. Filled with sassy phrases, I wouldn’t mind it in my bedroom.
Well, I took advantage of happy hour, didn’t I? Two for the price of one, thank you very much.
I had four cocktails. Hic.
I started with a long island ice tea because you can’t ever beat getting that much alcohol in one drink and still making it taste good, rather than the shit mix you used to have in the middle of Ring of Fire at Uni.
Then I had a Violet Femme. I drink quite of a lot of violet gin (do I sound like enough of an alcoholic in this post?) so I figured this would be a good one to start with. It’s a mix of gin and violet liqueur, plus you get a teeny packet of parma violets on the top. It was cute, but maybe my drinking of violet gin in the past has dulled my senses. It didn’t have quite the parma violet kick I was hoping for.
Then I moved onto some of the slightly wackier offerings on the menu. First I had a Big Smoke, which was a mix of Jack Daniels and marmalade – along with an egg white and bacon. Basically the ingredients to an alcoholic full English. Luckily, it didn’t taste like that! I have to say it wasn’t my kind of drink. I pretty much only tried it because I couldn’t work out how bacon could come with a cocktail. It’d be great if you’re into smokier, darker tasting cocktails, but nah, not for me.
Lastly, I had a Toasted Popcorn Sour. I seem to have developed a rule where I’ll probably love any cocktail that needs a blow torch to be made. I adored this one. It had popcorn syrup in it, which I’m gonna have to buy for my coffee in the mornings, or have pumped into me via an IV drip. It was incredible.
Would I go again?
For a start, there’s nowhere as good as this in Waterloo at the moment. If you’re killing time waiting for a train and don’t mind going home slightly sozzled, you’d do much worse than popping into Tonight Josephine for a drink.
Secondly, it’s really bloody pretty and I’m a sucker for good interior.
Finally, it’s just fun. It’s not quite as fun as Adventure Bar, but it’s not far behind!