Inside London's Oldest Bar - American Bar: Review
Navigating around the Covent Garden, walk into Savoy Hotel; the butler kindly guides me to the American Bar. Sitting down by the bar, Juris the bartender welcome me with their fabulous "Savoy Songbook" – a cocktail menu featuring 20 cocktails inspired by 20 songs.
With the obsession of Gin and the current mood at the time, "Electric Lover" got ordered. Juris turnaround grabbing an interesting bottle of in-house made ingredient, measure, shake and pour. All the actions are elegantly performed. Very soon he places down a heavy weighted coaster replicates the vinyl record look, and followed by the drink. The shiny purple looking cocktail is inspired by Prince's 'Purple Rain' performance in 2007.
The American Bar is smaller than I have imagined, but it is still a good amount of seating. A beautiful piano set in the center, where the beautiful jazz is played every evening. On the wall, there are many pictures hanging showcasing the portraits of their celebrity guests throughout history.
After serving other customers, Juris come and ask if I am interested in the history of American Bar and want to see some photos. There is no way for me to miss out on such a great opportunity. He hands me the photo book and patiently explains to me the history of the bar.
This iconic bar was started 5 years after the Savoy Hotel. This year 2019, mark the 125 years of American Bar. He also points out that in the 1950s, the American Bar was actually got turned into a Tiki bar as the result of the trend of that time.
Later he comes back with a couple more books in his hands. They are the previous menu from the past. Each of them is made with such good quality. One of them is an updated edition of the famous "The Savoy Cocktail Book" originally written by Harry Craddock in the 1930s. Juris shows me all the signatures in it, each was signed by the previous head bartenders at American Bar in the recent years.
Later in the evening when Maxim Schulte comes in, Juris was very kind to introduce Maxim to me. In fact, the whole team here is very friendly and really providing some of the best services to all the guests. Timepass by, more and more order starts coming in; Maxim and Juris are kind enough to introduce me the drinks that I did not get to order.
I lay on the bar, quietly watching the whole show happening until I have to leave for the dinner at Lyle's. Lots of beautiful drinks were being made and beautiful craftsmanship was being performed. It was a good evening.