The Alchemist brings a Midas touch to the City
Alchemy \'al-kǝ-mé \ : An ancient philosophy having as its asserted aims the transmutation of something ordinary into something extraordinary, often as a result of combining seemingly disparate objects or ideas.
A glint of gold has appeared amongst the charcoal and black suits of the City, with the arrival of The Alchemist restaurant and bar in the newly-developed Bevis Marks building, adjacent to The Gherkin.
Showing a love for libations, ingredients are stirred, smoked and steamed, foamed, fizzed and distilled to extract the humdrum and infuse with imagination - pushing the boundaries of what goes in a glass, but always respecting the classics!
The Alchemist takes the four base elements: Fire, Water, Earth and Air to create something that satisfies all the senses.
WATER...for quenching a thirst
In this modern incarnation, The Alchemist will eschew the pursuit of turning base metals to gold and focus on transforming cocktails from "been-there-done-that" to "where have you been all my life?" Beyond the copper-topped bar, scientists and mad men of mixology will raid their apothecary of beakers and bottles, combining unexpected ingredients with innovative techniques, unconventional equipment, and remarkable craftsmanship.
Expect smoking copper sharing kettles of Hawaiian Punch; pewter hipflasks hiding secret tinctures like Happiness; wooden barrels with ageing brews including a Corpse Reviver; Fools Gold in a shiny soda syphon and molecular elixirs in conical flasks that bubble, smoke and even change colour before your eyes.
Delve a little deeper into the expansive drinks list, which also includes plenty of wine, beer and mocktails and discover rare snifters amongst the League of Extraordinary Products. These are truly exceptional spirits, at surprising prices including Louis XIII De Remy Martin Cognac (£64), Johnnie Walker King George V (£19.25) and Patron Gran Burdeos (£22).
FIRE...in the belly
Breakfast at The Alchemist (served Monday-Friday 7am-12pm and Saturday 10am-12pm), is going to be big business with an array of dishes to start your day in the most satisfactory way. Go beyond the usual fry-up and feast on baked eggs topped with melting Lancashire cheese and chives; fluffy American pancakes; steak and potato cakes; classic butties; or the mish mosh - broken eggs with chorizo sausage, cheese, bacon, spinach and mushroom with toast.
Brekkie-friendly cocktails can also add some extra pep, be it a Classic Bloody Mary, Strawberry Bellini or the Tennessee Breakfast - Jack Daniel's, Licor 43, fresh pink grapefruit, vanilla syrup and maple foam, shaken and served martini style.
Crowd-pleasing classics lead the rest of the food offering. Begin with sharing tapatizers (starting from just £2.95) that can be mixed and matched from choices including edamame beans with soy and sea salt; pork crackling with apple and sage sauce; baked halloumi marinated in mint and wrapped in filo pastry; and salt and pepper chicken wings.
Mains feature gourmet hot sandwiches of fish fingers on tiger bread with ketchup and homemade tartar sauce and sliced fillet steak sautéed with mushrooms and onions, served with dipping gravy. Burgers come classic or patty-free, with pulled pork or flattened chicken fillet in its place, and a wide selection of salads including Israeli couscous and cranberry; sugar-cured duck, or Bang Bang chicken provide a lighter option. Japanese ramen with chicken, beef fillet, prawn or duck comes with a smoking conical flask of rich broth to pour over at the table, and jerk chicken, tandoori mackerel fillets and premium steaks using 28 day-aged beef are sure-fire favourites.
Classic desserts of cherry berry mess, warm chocolate fudge cake, Belgian waffles or affogato round things off on a sweet note.
AIR...enjoy the atmosphere
The huge, vintage, soft green cabinet of curiosities that houses the bar's vast collection of apparatus, barrel-aged cocktails; spirits and gorgeous glassware takes centre stage at The Alchemist, with a wraparound, copper-topped bar that gives plenty of space for patrons to perch and watch their mixology masterpieces taking shape.
Step up and around the glass partition to enter the all day restaurant, complete with outdoor terrace, and large windows to allow natural daylight to flood in. A subtle, muted colour scheme keeps all the attention on the food and drink and specially selected statement pieces of industrial-style lighting. A variety of seating options, from sleek high stools to bespoke Chesterfield couches and banquettes allow drinkers and diners to either lounge or perch in their preferred spot.
EARTH...there are only 24 hours in a day, make them count
Open from 7am-12am Monday and Tuesday, 7am-1am Wednesday, 7am-2am Thursday and Friday and 10am-12am on Saturdays, the latest City hangout will provide the ideal backdrop for first-thing breakfast briefings, laid-back lunches, Saturday brunches, post-work tipples, and late night suppers.
Groups can become The Alchemist's apprentices by booking cocktail masterclasses. Starting from £25 per person, learn to create the bar's classic cocktails such as the Smokey Old Fashioned, French Martini and Passion Fruit Mojito with that added touch of magic.
When all these elements are combined at The Alchemist, everything is golden.
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The Alchemist is open for morning coffee, brunch, lunch and dinner offering everything Living Ventures are renowned for – excellent service, innovative cocktails and great food.