July 26, 2021

Zaika

Livingston

9 best pop-up bars and restaurants in London for summer 2021

4 min read

Summer holidays might be off the table for many this year, but with pop-up beaches, cocktail festivals and even a Dior-themed restaurant, you don’t need to leave the city to get the holiday vibe.

Every year, pop-up bars and restaurants make up a key part of London’s food and drink scene, and after coronavirus restrictions cancelled the 2020 summer season, this year’s temporary venues look to be bigger and better than ever.

As well as some returning favourites, there are also a variety of brand new pop-ups and residencies to get excited about.

READ MORE: The stunning 18th-century park 30 minutes from London that is the perfect city escape

Without further ado, here are nine of the best pop-up bars, restaurants and venues in London for summer 2021.

1. Fulham Beach

One of London’s favourite pop-ups is back for summer 2021, with an indoor jungle-themed pergola, two pop-up restaurants, two bars, live DJs and of course its signature beach with deckchairs and private huts.

Fulham Beach will once again play host to a series of weekly events and games including bottomless brunches, yoga sessions on the beach, cocktail masterclasses and regular barbecues.

When: Until further notice

Where: Neverland, Wandsworth Bridge Road, SW6 2TY

2. Cocktails in the City 2021

With live music, al fresco dining and interactive demonstrations, Cocktails in the City is the UK’s best cocktail festival, bringing over 50 of the world’s best bars under one roof in cities across the country.

The festival will take up residence in the Bedford Square Gardens this year, with proceeds from ticket sales going to The Drinks Trust, the charity supporting the recovery of the hospitality industry post-Covid-19.

When: July 23-24 and August 20-21

Where: Bedford Square Gardens, WC1B 3HW

3. The Dorchester Rooftop

The rooftop of The Dorchester is usually the balcony to one of the penthouse suites but has been turned into a new rooftop restaurant for the summer.

This really is al fresco dining at its best, with live music and expansive views of Hyde Park. There are even water bottles, heaters and blankets on hand for the chillier nights.

The menu features highlights from The Dorchester Grill, with specials including lobster thermidor and Waterloo cheese wrapped in pastry with truffle honey.

When: Until further notice

Where: 53 Park Lane, W1K 1PN

4. Skylight Canalside

Skylight Canalside is a pop-up collaboration between KERB food markets and the Tobacco Dock rooftop terrace, brand new for 2021.

The new Quayside location will see two new KERB food trucks park up each month to offer a range of delicious street food, while Skylight’s team provide a range of beers, wines and spirits as well as a new menu of seasonal cocktails.

When: Saturdays throughout summer, until August 7

Where: Tobacco Dock, Wapping Lane, E1W 2SF

5. Arcade Monkeyz

If you’re looking for something a little different, Arcade Monkeyz might just be the venue for you.

Each dedicated sofa area of up to six people is kitted out with a multi-player arcade machine loaded up with 1,800 games to play with, including classic favourites like Mario Kart, Sonic and Mortal Kombat.

Plus, with street food, gaming-themed cocktails, beer garden and regular sports screenings (including the Euros), this is the place to be this summer.

When: Until further notice

Where: 53 Southwark Street, SE1 0TA

6. Alter at Leman Locke

Following on from a successful stint at Counter Culture in Clapham, Alter’s founder Andy Hogben (previously Kym’s, Dabbous and Som Saa) will be taking up residency in Aldgate’s Leman Locke aparthotel , hosted by Shaman.

The restaurant offers solely vegan dishes, but promises to challenge common perceptions of vegan food, taking inspiration from global street food cultures to show guests what is gained — not lost — through veganism.

When: Until further notice

Where: Leman Locke, 15 Leman Street, Whitechapel, E1 8EN

7. Dior at Alto, Selfridges

To celebrate Dioriviera, their new seaside-themed collection, Italian luxury brand Dior has given Selfridges’ rooftop restaurant a high fashion makeover for the summer, featuring deckchairs, parasols and cushions from the Dior Maison collection.

The menu features a range of Italian specialities, while the accompanying cocktail list has been renamed in tribute to the history of Dior, with drinks including Lady Dior and J’Adior Selfridges on offer.

When: Until September 30

Where: Selfridges, 400 Oxford Street, W1A 1AB

8. Midnight Apothecary

Voted one of London’s best outdoor pop-up cocktail bars since 2012, Midnight Apothecary is known for its award-winning botanical cocktails and atmospheric candle-lit roof garden set in the heart of the Brunel Museum.

The pop-up is back this year, with the addition of individual fire pits for hire and of course the return of the popular s’mores kits.

There’s also the option to go on an underground tour of Brunel’s Grand Entrance Hall to the Thames Tunnel (directly beneath the garden) as part of your visit, with all entry fees going to the Brunel Museum.

When: Until July 18

Where: Brunel Museum, Railway Avenue, SE16 4LF

9. The Rooftop at Hippodrome Casino

The Rooftop is a three-tier pop-up bar set above the Hippodrome Casino. The pop-up is in partnership with Tanqueray gin, with the menu offering something for every gin-lover.

For a playful twist on a classic favourite, try the Tanqueray Passion, a blend of Tanqueray No. Ten gin, tangy lime and fresh passion fruit.

When: Until further notice

Where: The Hippodrome Casino, Leicester Square, WC2H 7JH

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