As Bath’s resident experts in fantastic food and drink, the Taste of Bath team (and especially Helen) are constantly asked for our favourite recommendations for bars and restaurants in the city. So by popular demand, we are delighted to bring your our ultimate guide to drinks in Bath, whatever your particular tipple! Look out for another guide coming soon starring all our favourite foodie spots…
Bath is bursting with excellent cocktail bars so this is a really tough one, but a few of our particular highlights include The Canary Gin Bar, The Dark Horse, and Circo. The Canary is home to our very own Bath Gin and they’re the definitive gin & tonic experts – as well as Bath Gin, you can taste over 200 other carefully selected gins in all sorts of delicious combinations. The Dark Horse is home to possibly Helen’s favourite cocktail ever, Penicillin (a fabulous whisky and ginger number) and serves a gorgeous menu of seasonal cocktails, which changes regularly and stars all sorts of delicious ingredients and elements made in-house. Top tip – if you’re heading to the Dark Horse, you absolutely have to book a table in advance, they really are that popular! Circo, meanwhile, is a beautiful, elegant space for any night out and serves up a menu of classics as well as their own creations, with lots of great events going on too.
This is Helen’s real area of expertise, and with great difficulty she’s narrowed it down to The Beckford Bottle Shop, Comptoir + Cuisine and Le Vignoble. The Beckford Bottle Shop may well pop up in our foodie guide too, as their small plates are seriously fabulous – perfect for pairing with a few glasses of wine from their extensive menu, which features all sorts of quirky and interesting discoveries. Comptoir + Cuisine’s particular speciality is champagne, and we highly recommend you hit their champagne bar in the vaults to pop the bubbles on a Friday night. Le Vignoble, meanwhile, has a lovely chilled out approach to wine, with Enomatic dispensing machines that mean you can serve yourself tasters of anything you fancy trying – it’s a great way to explore the world of wine and a lot of fun for a night out with friends.
If the summer weather has you craving a few cold ones, then Taste of Bath producers Electric Bear have you covered – although it’s on the edge of town, their taproom is well worth a visit to try their full range of beers. They also run lots of great events featuring live music and local foodies, which always guarantee a brilliant atmosphere. In the centre of the city, meanwhile, visit local booze experts Independent Spirit to stock up your fridge for chilled-out drinking at home, or hit the Bath Brew House to discover more excellent local beers, including several brewed on-site. Their beer garden is fab in the summer too.
More about the atmosphere? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered…
For al fresco drinking
Speaking of summer, is there anything nicer than sitting back on a sunny day with something crisp and refreshing? For al fresco drinking, our top recommendations include the Marlborough Tavern, whose beer garden just on the edge of the city centre is a gorgeously tranquil spot, Sub 13, whose courtyard is always buzzing on balmy evenings, and Vino Vino for excellent people-watching on a great little city-centre plaza.
For pub drinking
It’s hard to beat a really good pub, and Bath is blessed with so many – Helen’s particular favourite is The Hop Pole, for its excellent food (especially the Sunday roast) and lovely outdoor space, but we also love The Griffin in the centre of town, which has recently had a renovation and is looking really fabulous.
Where’s your favourite place in Bath for a few drinks? Wine bar and nibbles or pints in the pub? Leave us a comment and let us know!