The Bloomsbury

I'd originally seen this quirky looking bar and restaurant advertised on Facebook and my curiosity got the better of me. I booked it up and popped it in the calendar as a treat to get 2017 off to a nice start. Since then I've seen many blog posts about it and I've hoped desperately that it's as lovely as the photographs promise.

The Bloomsbury is a very unassuming building just off of Tottenham Court Road. A large, red brick exterior with a simple but elegant staircase leading inside. Once through the doors, everything starts to make a little more sense.

It might be worth mentioning now that if you are a regular person like us, this venue is more a special occasion or treat day out. It comes with the matching price tag of it's neighbouring Fitzrovia hotels.

Dalloway Terrace

We followed the signs to the terrace and were escorted through what I can only describe as the rubber door flaps you find in industrial fridges. The terrace was exactly what it said on the tin - a terrace. With a temporary roof and walls that I assume they pull back in the summer, the room was dotted with lots of garden heaters to keep it warm.

And if that wasn't toasty enough, the chairs were lined with sheepskin covers and plush grey blankets as far as the eye could see. Glistening lights, frosty pinecones, snow covered twigs, I had entered a Christmas Narnia. It was beautiful. (I managed to snap some pics on my phone but it felt a little too intimate to break out the 'big' camera.)

Once settled, our cosy surroundings seemed the perfect place to start some adventure research.

It's worth mentioning, if you prefer more privacy, Dalloway terrace is not for you. The tables are pushed very closely together. We were seated next to 2 ladies who managed to make afternoon tea last 2 hours in silence. Great for us - unfortunate for them having to hear about our lives and witness the 'informal' methods in which we chose to consume our food.

We had originally booked in for afternoon tea but when asked which menu we would like to order from, it felt rude not to say all of them. We decided we'd had enough sweet from the Christmas chocolate massacre and opted for fondue. In true us style we ordered a feast. Mr B opted for a red pepper piquillo whilst I went for a more masculine farmhouse cheddar and Guinness. They came with a side of dippy veg and sourdough. Of course that wasn't enough so we added on some charcuterie and hand cut chips for good measure. Nothing says sophistication like some chips for your meltedy cheese :P

Then it was time to let the "fundue" commence. A little tricky to eat and probably not the best choice for a date but delicious nonetheless. (They could do with improving the method in which they keep the fondue warm. Our flames kept blowing out which became frustrating and a little awkward each time our waiter returned to relight it).

Overall, I would say that Dalloway terrace is a lovely "experience" when decorated for Christmas - but you are paying for your surroundings. I'd imagine the rest of the year it's just another pricy terrace in town, pretty but not unique. The food was lovely, drinks - average, atmosphere - a little pretentious. It is worth visiting for the treat but I wouldn't feel the need to return.  If like me, you prefer a bit more substance to your meal, I'd skip this part, stop at five guys at Tottenham Court Road for fuel and head onto the next part of this post.

The Bloomsbury Club

The next part of our evening was just a hop, skip and a jump down some stairs and into The Bloomsbury Club bar.

Oozing 1920's Gatsby charm with a modern twist, smooth Jazz on the speakers, the inside is dark and decadent - like you've just stepped into the parlour with the gentleman for a cigar. The outside, heated bar is draped in twinkling lights and exposed brickwork - absolutely beautiful. The bar itself opened in 2016, and on a Monday evening after festive celebrations it was very quiet and incredibly romantic.

The menu offers interesting cocktails at an average London price - around £10 each. They taste heavenly and are generous with the booze.

The more you search, the more cosy little corners you find. I didn't want to leave!

After a snuggle outside in the candlelight and a quick mess about with camera, we headed inside to see more of what this bar had to offer.

Reflections everywhere, dark mahogany, antique bar - the inside offers seclusion from the streets outside that makes you feel like you're a VIP in a space built just for you.

And what's not to love about that tree! The last one I'll see until next year and not a bad way to end the festivities.

We finished up our drinks at the end of our evening having spent a lot of time seated at the bar. I could spend hours watching the super friendly staff meticulously create cocktails like they were pieces of art.

I cannot recommend this bar enough and I will definately be returning. On this occasion I owe thanks to that random Facebook ad for this find!

As we wandered down Oxford Street, back in the bright lights and chaos of a city that never sleeps, there was only one way to end a lovely day... A bit of London town long exposure to satisfy our cravings until next time!

- MTWP xxx

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