On Thursday, I was a very spoilt little blogger, attending the launch party of a new “blasphemous basement bar” in Camberwell: Communion Bar. A lucky pair of my friends were able to partake in the event too, and our verdict on this new cocktail destination was resoundingly positive!
Billed as “a place to enjoy a baptism of exceptional music and artisan cocktails”, Communion Bar pays homage to the sacred beverage [alcohol], taking influence from the flavours of South London to create some knock-out drinks.
Combined with a beautiful interior and umpteen stained glass windows, some insanely good live music (think jazzy funky beats), and tasty tapas from the Angels & Gypsies kitchen located upstairs, Communion Bar is a recipe for success.
Communion is accessed via a heavy, church-like wooden door beneath the Church Street Hotel. The place was buzzing when we arrived.
Waiters circulated with Angels & Gypsies tapas, inspired by Northern Spanish grandmothers’ cooking, prepared from scratch with handmade, fresh, local, organic ingredients – tortilla, salt cod and sweet pepper empanadas, garlic mussels and jamon croquetas; there was pistachio cake for afters.
Trombone Jerome, backed by a charismatic band, pumped out pure funk goodness that got guests dancing and clapping.
Mixologists worked quickly behind the bar, whipping up batches of perfectly presented cocktails to satisfy the thirsty masses. The drinks were free-flowing, so Katie and I made it our mission to try one of everything from the event menu…
Chris arrived at 10pm, just as the complementary bar was closing (drinks are normally a very reasonable ~£8.50), but thankfully they switched to “Blessed Happy Hour” prices (normally 5-8pm daily) and opened up the full menu for tasting at £5 a pop. On our wish list were:
Calvary – with St John Commandaria wine:
In the end, we sampled a Daisy Flower Martini (neat and bitter), Fresh & Loose (in a teacup), Grass Arena (served in a bottle inside a brown paper bag, with Carlsberg Special Brew and chilli-infused whisky – we didn’t like this one), Black Rice Old Fashioned (Jameson’s with sticky rice liqueur and homemade nettle syrup) and a South Eastern (super sweet and almost soapy in taste – like Parma Violet sweets!?).
Given the number of drinks we tried, I believe I am in a very strong position to review Communion Bar 🙂 I could find no fault save for the remote location, but consider all the positives to fully outweigh the convoluted TFL trip you must take to reach it. Food, drink and music – Communion smashes this Holy Trinity with aplomb.
29-33 Camberwell Church Street Basement, Camberwell, SE5 8TR