After shopping until you drop in our Cruise Glasgow store this Bank Holiday weekend, why not take the weight off your feet inside some of the best cocktail bars in town.
From classics with a little twist to truly outrageous flavour combinations, Soba’s cocktail list is impressive to say the least - and ingenious to say the most. Not content with simply setting the standard for proper cocktails in Glasgow, the team at Soba hold weekly Masterclasses, letting you in on the tricks of the trade.
Bar Soba is bustling even on a weeknight due to its wide range of cocktails to choose from. The friendly bar staff make up for the less comfortable bench and stool seating by being totally accommodating and helping you decide just what you fancy. The selection is pan-Asian themed with a special section on the menu for Yakuza Cocktails – think sake cocktails.
Despite the stools and benches, Bar Soda makes for a quirky cocktail bar; bold, interesting graffiti artwork on the walls and corrugated iron walls gives an industrial feel while a positively huge food menu is also available if you’re needing Soba-ring up.
All in all, Bar Soba strikes a good balance between trendy and good value and just need some small tweaks to become a must-visit bar in the West End.
The Tiki Bar & Kitsch Inn
In the Basement Tiki Bar, discover an oasis of escapism, grab a peacock chair and enjoy a tropical cocktail served in an authentic ceramic Tiki mug. Pop upstairs and lounge in the Kitsch Inn for Glasgow’s tastiest Thai food in swanky, Atomic-era surroundings. All cocktails contain 100% fresh non-pasteurised juices and a potent kick. Music from Glasgow’s best bands and DJ’s playing mixes in the Rockabilly, 50s swing, Rock ‘n' Roll, Reggae and Funk & Soul genres.
Hidden away on Bath Street, The Tiki Bar is a paean to the mid-century Polynesian kitsch style which swept the US, mostly inspired by GIs returning from tropical postings in the late forties and popularised by Don ‘The Beachcomber’ and Trader Vic in Los Angeles.
Hitting the nail on the head, the actual bar itself is bamboo-fronted and roofed with pale fronds, decked out with postcards from exotic locales. The wall is covered in posters of cheeky forties pin-ups and tropical ephemera, while Hawaiian-shirted bartenders all add to the general mid-century modern styling.
Appropriately, the drinks list weighs heavily on the rum front; Mai Tais, Pina Coladas and of course the heavyweight classic Zombie – containing five different rums, plus absinthe and limited to two per customer – dominate the cocktails and all come in beautiful custom-made glassware. The cheeky Rum Bongo brings with it a nostalgic rush of the eighties childhood favourite with a seriously adult kick.
It wouldn’t be tiki without some oversized sharing drinks, either. Along with the usual rum punches there’s the well-named Blingin’ Berry Punch; Stolichnaya and Perrier Jouet served in a giant conch shell.
What sets The Tiki Bar apart is the attention to detail - all of the fruit juices are freshly squeezed and the vast array of rums are used to their best effect.
All in all, The Tiki Bar brings a welcome drop of Polynesia in the midst of the financial district.
The Corinthian Club is Glasgow’s most stylish dining, gaming and late night clubbing venue with five floors of bars and private spaces available for hire.
The Corinthian Club is a glamorous, glitzy venue between Glasgow’s city centre and Merchant City, making it the perfect place to stop off for a drink. A huge venue, with gaming, dining and drinking all accommodated for in various rooms over five floors, depending on what you like, there will be a room for you.
For cocktails, visit Charlie Parker’s Bar on the first floor - an intimate, but not crowded, piano bar. Although the cocktail menu isn’t particularly large, the bar staff are happy for you to go off menu if there is something you know you like.
Situated in the newly refurbished Hilton Glasgow in the heart of the city, Connich Bar takes its name from the Scottish Gaelic word meaning ‘to encounter’. The bar boasts a varied cocktail list, which is comprised of classic, Champagne, and calorie conscious cocktails or opt for Connich’s signature Glasgow-inspired ‘Connich in the Mist’.
The decision to pick a Gaelic word as the bar’s name is just one of the Scottish details that add a welcome local touch to an international chain. Their signature cocktail, Connich in the Mist, described as bringing “the taste of Scottish to life" is a mixture of Hendricks gin, thistle infused gomme, bramble jam and seasonal berries, all served in a thistle-shaped glass, and is nothing short of a cocktail masterpiece. With a stick of dry ice in the glass to create a smoking goblet effect, no details have been overlooked to make this cocktail a truly memorable signature drink. If you only have one thing, have this.
Luckily, designing their own creations has not left the classic cocktails as an afterthought. The list includes most of the old favourites with the Strawberry Daiquiri being particularly impressive; served in a giant Martini glass it genuinely tastes like fresh strawberries. If you can’t find something you fancy on the cocktail list The Hilton’s award winning mixoligist John Paul will create your own unique drink based around your preferred spirit or flavour.
(Written by Rachael Fletcher)