A slice of the islands in London
It’s Spring in London; there’s new shoots on trees and the daffodils are in full bloom. Some sorely missed green and gold for this Australian after what felt like a revolving Groundhog Day of grey. But, for those who say Spring is not enough and prefer to see gold of sandy beaches, the green of coconut trees and the sound of crashing waves, (you know the type, the ones whose hearts yearn for the island refuges of the South Pacific or the Caribbean), there’s a perfect spot in the heart of London waiting for you to drink your way to the fond memories of Summer.
Nine Lives, is a completely unassuming from the outside, situated below a converted warehouse-cum-office and next to the tracks leading out of London Bridge Railway Station. But, once you step inside you’re transported to an understated and chic bar where the drinks are served in glassware that imply tiki bar, but never says it too loudly. The décor is equally fitting with enough green that you forget your underground in South London. Woody tones also shine here, so you’ll feel warm on the most blustery of London days.
The line up of drinks are mostly improvements on classic cocktails, such as, cosmopolitans and rum sours – think your favourite drink but make it a pina colada. You can’t go past the coco de mer which includes two types of rum and banana. What sounds more Sunkissed than that?! So it’s definitely a vibe you want to get around. If you feel like a tipple that is less sweet, there’s always the Habenero Highball which keeps it simple with vodka, watermelon and habanero. Delish!
There’s a food cart too, with some pretty great Mexican food. The spice level is all the way up, and in true London fashion there’s great plant-based alternatives. The No-Baja taco which swaps out fish for banana blossom, is definitely a winner for those seeking a meat-free Monday or maybe something more tropical than white fish from Scotland. Other dishes feature fresh mango and obviously avocado – so you can really pair up a coconut-based rum with island flavours.
On warmer evenings you can enjoy your beveragino and tostadas outside. So, there’s definitely a reason to enjoy Nine Lives at least twice. Or, if you’re like me, it may become your go-to when you’re seeking out a little place to enjoy in the sun or when you want to pretend you’re in the sun.
Images by Damian Kelly | Location: Nine Lives