Thursday night of course signals the start of the weekend and as it is Thursday morning we’re almost there! Whilst you’re counting down the hours, check out our guide to some of the best weekend plans in London! From Tibetan pop-ups and wreath making to spoken word poets and Bavarian beer tents! The count down starts now!
All of the Lights
The countdown to Christmas isn’t truly on until London’s lights are up. This Thursday, Holly Willoughby will be doing the honours on Regent Street, which this year are inspired by lights of 1954 – Regent Street was the first central London destination to have its own lights. Joining Holly will be Heart Breakfast’s Jamie Theakston and Emma Bunton, with live performances from Tom Odell and Rebecca Ferguson. Actual switch on will take place at 6.50pm.
Thursday 17th November, 6pm (streets closed to traffic from 4pm)
Want more lights? Fitzrovia, Seven Dials and St Martins Courtyard are all being switched on this weekend too.
Beer, Beer and Beer-infused Gin
Love a pint? Cornwall’s Sharp’s Brewery is hosting an evening of everything from beer pong to I Have Never… in the form of Flavour Pong and Sharp’s infamous Beer Confessional. Held at One Sixty City, try exclusive food pairings on one night only and be in the chance of winning prizes if your tastebuds are feeling particularly confident. Choose from a whole range of beers and Sharp’s one-off Hoptail, created with Cornwall’s Southwestern gin Distillery. Thirsty Thursday indeed.
Thursday 17th November, 4-10pm
Some Jazz With Your Pop
Want to get involved in the London Jazz Festival but still want to eat pizza and drink beer while you’re at it? Not Quite Jazz is Pop Brixton’s answer to the festival and this weekend will see (free) live performances of not just jazz but also funk, soul and hip hop… not to mention pop. OK, there won’t actually be pop music but there will be the usual roster of street food and drink which has made Pop Brixton hit the big time.
Friday 18th and Saturday 19th, midday to midnight
Doughnuts and Pizza For Brunch
We brought you news of Fucina which opened in Marylebone back in October. We also said a brunch was ‘to come’ and now it’s time. You’ll find freshly baked pastries including Italian doughnuts (why are doughnuts for breakfast not a thing here?), breakfast pizzas, eggs benedict and fresh fruit platters alongside cold-pressed juices, smoothies and coffee roasted in-house.
Four Days of Feasting
What could be better than four days of feasting? Exactly. Taste of London is back with its festive edition. Taking over Tobacco Docks, the festival gives you the chance to sample signature plates from top restaurants, see world class chefs at and attend master classes and demonstrations. Restaurants taking part include the likes of bubbledogs, Tom’s Kitchen, Oldroyd and Black Axe Mangal. Eating pants at the ready.
Just the other side of the river to Kew Gardens sits another (equally green) patch of land; Syon Park. Back for another year, its Enchanted Woodland sees the trees and conservatories of the park illuminated, creating a magical if slightly eery wonderland for an after-dark stroll – the gardens are 600 years old. The Enchanted Woodland is open every weekend until 4th December, get tickets online in advance.
The Rink Returns
This one needs no explaining: Somerset House’s Ice Rink returns. The countdown to Christmas isn’t truly on until the rink is down and the wine is mulling so brave the ice or assign yourself the role as chief photographer (on dry ground) and save your friends a spot in Fortnum’s Lodge. Hello cheese fondue, tartiflette and pigs in blankets…
Poetry in a Distillery
Speakeasies so called because you had to speak quietly about them so as not to alert the police during the prohibition era. Someone else who know a lot about speaking is Joshua Idehen, one of London’s coolest spoken word artists. So, what have Beefeater London Dry done as part of their London Tonic Series? They’ve turned their distillery bar into a speakeasy, got Joshua on board to recite his own verse and give a mini-masterclass on how to read poetry like a pro and of course knocked up some of the best gin cocktails around.
Saturday 19th November
Winter Beer Garden
This week saw the launch of Galvin HOP’s winter garden. Teaming up with Pilsner Urquell, the Bavarian-style beer tent will be home to a 250 litre copper tank (that’s 440 pints worth) which will serve up fresh unpasteurised Pilsner Urquell delivered direct from Pilsen, Czech Republic. If beer isn’t your thing there’ll also be Galvin Champagne and mulled wine. To accompany will be the likes of Cumbrian beef rump burger, tarte flambee and Galvin HOP’s signature dogs including the Galvin Christmas Dog Deluxe. You can exclusively hire it if you’ve got a party coming up or drop in between 5pm -10:30pm for drinks.
Wreath Making Workshop
Following on from their hygge weekend, The London EDITION will be keeping things festive and cosy this weekend with two workshops of Sunday afternoon. First up will be candle making with Mckinley & Paget where you can make an all-natural candle using essential oils – they burn for 90 hours so that should see you through the dark winter months. Following on from that will be wreath making with Grace & Thorn, they’ll show you how to make a seasonal wreath inspired by the Dutch Masters. Give them as presents…to yourself – you don’t have to share everything at Christmas.
You might have seen them at Netil 360 over the summer and now The Momo Shack are heading to Dalston for a six week evening pop-up. They’ll be serving up Tibetan momos – steamed dumplings, with mixed vegetable stir-fry and handmade tomato salsa – perfect comfort food on a cold autumn night. Wash it down with Tibetan themed cocktails, London craft beers and organic wines. There’ll also be a number of Tibetan and Buddhist teaching evenings and acoustic sets from local musicians.
See our Christmas page for more festive happenings