Close to Old Street Station at the top end of Rivington Street is Portside Parlour, a cosy candlelit bar serving tapas style food and well crafted cocktails. Originally started as a speakeasy on Broadway Market it has since moved to a more prominent area on London’s east side.
In a fantastic location to kick off a date, Portside Parlour is just a few minutes walk from the Old Street roundabout. Primarily a cocktail bar it is styled from the outside to look like a nautical antiquities shop. Inside, the bar sticks to its nautical theme stocking over 80 varieties of rum for the sailors in you.
Portside Parlour operates under a restaurant license which means you have to buy some food whilst you are there but don’t let this put you off, the menu is small and so are the plates but they are packed full of flavour. When we visited we had already eaten so just decided to get some nibbles; mixed olives which was a generous portion and Manchego stuffed courgette flowers that turned out to be the crack cocaine of nibbles, priced at £1 each I would happily come back and get 10 of these for my dinner though sadly these are no longer on the menu as it’s seasonal.
With the cocktails we didn’t know what to go for but the staff are on hand and gave excellent recommendations based on what we liked. After tasting a few our personal favourite was the “Jet Pilot” containing a mix of Plantation OP, Myers’s, Matusalem Platino, Velvet Falernum, Absinthe, Grapefruit & Lime Juice, Fassionola & Angostura Bitters and topped with a mini bowl made from ice and full of pomegranate seeds.
The space is fairly small so make sure to book to avoid disappointment. There are plenty of options to move on to afterwards such as The Blues Kitchen for live music from some of the best musicians London has to offer.
Portside Parlour is a great bar for a first date, with it’s ideal location, great food, cocktails and ambience as well as an easy attitude, it’s a no brainer.