Ever After comes from the team behind the award-winning Happiness Forgets, a regular in any roundup of the world’s best cocktail bars. Always aim to maximise your talents – and with his new venture, owner Alastair Burgess has done just that.
The interior is gorgeously old school. Ever After is a small rectangular room bisected by a bar shaped like a reverse L.
Within this room you will find exposed brick work, rows of bottles, plenty of vegetation and bartenders who treat you like an old friend. Pretty soon, you will be: because there’s no chance you aren’t coming back.
What to drink?
Dare to be adventurous with your choices. Maybe a Knickerbocker Royale (rum, orange curacao, raspberries, sparkling wine), which is clean and sharp, with a lovely fizzing aftertaste. Hop Scotch Sour (Scotch whisky, lemon, egg, wiper, amber ale) goes down like the best beer in the world. Honestly, if it came out of a keg you'd never look at a craft ale again
And then there’s Ceremony (chinato, peach, lapsang, souchong soda) – quite simply one of the best cocktails in London. How good? I came here with a colleague three months ago and carried its memory from then till now. Apparently people don't recognise the ingredients and rarely order it. Don't be like the crowd.
How’s the food?
Here’s where things really get exciting. Ever After recently appointed Joni Ketonen as head chef, whose credentials include Michelin-starred restaurants George in Finland and Heston Blumenthal's legendary Fat Duck. He serves up a selection of small, shareable plates and you’ll want to sample as many as possible.
There’s a burrata so creamy Eric Clapton would approve. It's complemented by avocado and grapes in a delightful almond sauce. Speaking of cream, it's present in rosemary form, surrounding the poached cod and wild mushrooms. The fish is so soft you can cut it with your fork.
Steak tartare is fantastic, obviously, but it's garnished with crispy kale and the kale is incredible – almost an equal partner in the dish rather than a supporting act. I know, right? Kale of all things! Then the ravioli, one vast piece of pasta swimming in an orange pumpkin sauce. You'll need bread. Lots of bread.
Will it bankrupt me?
Considering you’re getting some of the best food and drink combinations in London, Ever After is a fantastic deal. Cocktails are £9.50 across the board and only a couple of dishes break the £10 mark.
Even if you have a sizeable quantity with your quality, we’ll be impressed if you rack up three figures. What’s not to like?
Anything else to note?
Fancy a drink at Ever After’s parent bar, Happiness Forgets? It’s literally in the basement below you. Talk about a 2-4-1 deal.
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8-9 Hoxton Square, N1 6NU; Ever After