Those times when going to a hotel bar was seen as dubious are long gone and the St James Bar in London’s five star Sofitel Hotel is not an exception. The magnificent historic building is a stone’s throw away from the overwhelming Piccadilly Circus and Trafalgar Square, yet it couldn’t be any further apart. Walking through the restaurant entrance, my drinking companion and I found ourselves in a room oozing luxury and elegance, a theme that runs throughout the hotel.
The St. James Bar menu is extensive as one would expect, with a rich range of drinks and bar food on offer, but it was the Baba Bar collection we were most intrigued by. Babas – small round sponge-like cakes, which are traditionally infused with rum, underwent a French makeover here in St James Bar. There are five varieties on offer, all bathing in different liquors, all perfectly matched with a mouth-watering cocktails, prepared by one of the very skilled mixologists, and are priced at £16 each.
We tried the beautifully presented Baba Gin Pimms and Baba Vodka Moscow Mule, both deliciously dangerous. The Baba was soaking in gin and vodka respectively, just the perfect amount, topped with a layer of cream. I must be honest, the thought of mixing cocktails and cakes has never crossed my mind, but the Baba Bar collection seems to work a treat. Enjoying the cosy atmosphere and not ready to leave yet, we opted for round two. My friend had the Baba Cointreau Long Island Ice Tea and I went for the Baba Rum Pina Colada, which was most definitely one of the best Pina Coladas I have ever tasted. If time travel was a thing, it would explain how I momentarily found myself back in Thailand lying in a hammock, listening to the sound of waves.
The fifth Baba on the menu, and I can only imagine created for the brave ones, was the Baba Tequila, which I will just have to try next time.
The atmosphere in St James Bar was relaxing, with its elegant furnishings and warm lighting, topped with attentive service, all together offering comfortable and special experience. A fab place for a girls’ night out or a birthday celebration, and the Baba Bar collection will in no doubt make a great impression for a date too.
For more information and bookings visit www.thebalconlondon.com