Be At One: champions of cocktail craft, feel-good vibes and a hefty happy hour. Having earned a reputation in innovation and making drinking an art form, Be At One haven't disappointed a thirst lingering crowd yet. Churning out chains of cocktail dens across practically every zone of London, it was their Balham boozer under the spotlight this week.
But a short skip from Balham underground, the bar's distinctive blue earning and gold lettering frames a humble spot on its street. The space unfolds as you enter with the famed bar as the shining feature. Finished in a dark and brooding interior with the statement blue accents, this Be At One is a space of rich wooden bar chairs and red leather quilted booths. Reckoning a vintage saloon style with varnished stools a plenty, Be At One Balham oozes warm comforts perfect to settle down with mates for a cheeky tipple or an extended boozing session.
Now for the good stuff. It has to be said, Be At One are in proud possession of one of the most extensive cocktail menus in the biznizz. The guys behind the menu masterpiece at Be At One have built a library of sassy specials, delicious treats, ice cream shakers and hard-fast spirit harmonies that please every punter and geezer alike.
Immediately treated with a trio of a cheeky new cocktail (an exclusive taste from the menu revamp), the Absolut Sherbet was a tangy blend of sharp sweetness and crisp vodka. Definitely a lip smacker but Abolut-ely fizztastic and lived up to its trusty recommendation. Second up to the Sherbet was a round of Brazilian Monk's (...not literally) followed by the White Tea and Elderflower Martini. A sucker for an ice cream creation, the Brazilian Monk did us proud satisfying a Ben & Jerry's flavour. This one goes down a dream without a trace of bitter alcohol in the taste, just cold, creamy goodness. Warning: brain freeze will endure if you see this drink away (despite how easy the idea may be)! Moving on to the delicate Martini mixer; this was both elegant to look at and to sip. With succulent fresh tones, this was yet another example of the expert bartending credentials stacked at Balham's Be At One.
I headed down for a thirsty Thursday evening session with friends in tow. All you faithful Be At Oners who have basked in the glory of their Happy Hour until 8pm will know the elation I felt when arriving within an hour and a half of this cheerful time-frame. Already welcoming an after-work crowd just before 7pm, the night went on to see people pouring into this hub of entertainment and strictly feel-good tunes.
The bartenders themselves are the key ingredient for building the fun, playful vibes of the bar showcasing their mixology mastery with a cheeky flare and sparkling smile. I can imagine the bar getting a tad cramped on a weekend with is popularity already booming on a Thursday. But even so, it seems as long as you've got a well made drink in hand (certainly no hard feat for the staff) and good company, this Balham resident will serve as the perfect mid-week tipple or weekend bender.
Another Be At One special continuing the chains reign as London's leading cocktail bar and packing a powerful punch when it comes to the art of bartending. It was nothing but alcohol thrills and brilliant service for me. Their philosophy is simple - drink and have fun. Another successful London plot to add to the Be At One empire.
(Psst. with around 20 new cocktail creations launching on the 20th October, keep your eyes peeled for the new kids on the Be At One block - you know they'll be corkers.)