Coupette in Bethnal Green: French-inspired bar explores the darker side of East London with new menu
Somewhere between the East End boozers and late-night eateries is Coupette, a French-inspired cocktail bar serving no less than 24 different cocktails in the heart of Bethnal Green. Ranked at number 23 on the World’s 50 Best Bars list, it has earned its stripes by creating an impressive selection of tasty concoctions that appeal to punters who enjoy sipping tipples in a relaxed and easy-going setting.
The new menu titled Urban Legends and Their Uprising Tales is split into six chapters and is described as “both an exploration into the darker side of East London and a gritty tale of wits, innovation, friendship and teamwork winning against the odds”.
Delving into a dark and mysterious narrative, bar manager Andrei Marcu and his team have imagined themselves as an East London gang who are navigating their way around Bethnal Green through “illicit Calvados deals, spirit smuggling and ingredient hustling”. The softly-lit and cosy bar provided the perfect setting for the story and was brought to life by a beautiful hardback menu designed by illustrator Molly Rose. We couldn’t wait to work our way through the chapters and live out the fictional tale through a variety of cocktails. Let’s face it, we could all do with a bit of escapism right now.
We started with one of Coupette’s signature cocktails, the Champagne Piña Colada. Made with a Bacardi blend, Rhum Agricole, pineapple juice, coconut sorbet and, of course, a decent measure of Moët & Chandon champagne. This was an absolute delight from start to finish and manages to add a dash of indulgence to the humble classic.
Next, we had Chocolate & Red Wine which was made up of Flor de Caña, chocolate wine and Winder Chocolate Cacao. This tasted exactly how you’d imagine and although it boasted bold and decadent flavours, it still retained a delicate lightness.
French Toast was sharp, tart and syrupy sweet. The mixture of Bacardi aged blend, cinnamon, raspberry, crème de cassis, lime and brioche resulted in a punchy, neat cocktail that disappeared with just a few sips.
Brick by Brick appeared in a beautiful ceramic mug and wouldn’t have looked out of place next to my bedtime cocoa. Made with almond butter, Dewar’s 12-year-old blended scotch whisky, Disaronno, lemon, roasted cashew, caramelised milk, Noix de la Saint Jean and butterscotch soda, this was bursting with nutty flavours and incredibly comforting.
The Strawberry Adonis combined Absolut strawberry vodka, Noilly Prat vermouth, Dolin Chamberyzette wild strawberry vermouth and strawberry-infused Tio Pepe sherry, which made for a refreshingly fruity and juicy cocktail.
The Corny Gimlet was one of the more experimental cocktails in terms of layering of flavour. Made with smoked salty buttered Plymouth gin, Woodford corn liquor and sour popcorn tea, the sweetness of the corn was beautifully balanced with a caramelised and smoky aftertaste.
If you enjoy sampling an eclectic range of flavours and working your way through a carefully crafted drinks menu, then Coupette is the perfect place to grab a table and enjoy unpretentious and sumptuous cocktails all night long.
★★★★★Drinks ▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮Service ▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮
Alex Julie Woods
To book a table at Coupette, 423 Bethnal Green Rd London E2 0AN, call 020 7729 9562 or visit their website here.