I've been pondering lately just what it is about a place that makes me want to drink there. I’ve found myself becoming increasingly transitory, less attached to the ideal of "the local." While I love walking into a joint and immediately getting a familiar smile, sometimes I seek solace and contemplation. Other times, it’s new experiences—or at least something a little outside of my wheelhouse.
More and more I find myself skipping from pub, to natty wine bar, to cocktail spot, to whatever. I’m happy so long as you can provide me a bar that I can sit at, with enthusiastic, knowledgeable staff I can engage with should I choose to, or a nook I can hide in should I wish to be left alone. Food is a plus (but only if it's done well), and the booze needs to be a) exceptionally tasty or b) extremely refreshing.
Every Cloud in Hackney, East London fits the bill just so. Here's a bar that really gives a shit about its drinks and making you feel welcome—whether it’s a busy Saturday evening service or a silent, solitary midweek drink. They're more than happy to let folks sit at the bar and crush cans of Asahi while I work on my second martini. Or is it my third? No matter. Some Fernet, please?