A word of warning: the views at Sabine are so amazing that if you go there for a drink, you might be so busy Instagramming yourself that you don’t actually get any drinking done. And that would be silly. Especially when the drinks are this good.
Perched high on a rooftop, the views go from St. Paul’s Cathedral – right there! Almost on top of you! – right across to Tate Modern on the other side of the Thames. Go on a sunny evening and you probably won’t even look at your companions, you’ll be watching swallows wheeling across that famous blue dome.
But if you can get yourself back in the room – or back on the terrace (we actually preferred the main terrace to the little VIP balcony with privatized drinking spots defined by box hedges, but that’s us) – there’s plenty to enjoy.
We went for the vegan platter and were astounded at the lavishness. A huge plank of wood covered in little bowls of arancini and hummus and griddled asparagus and edamame and beetroot mini-salads, all with petals and pansies to make them even more photogenic. Oh, and a huge bowl of leaves and carrots with their tops on for you to dip in the, erm, dips. Because if the new order of things has taught us anything, it’s eat the whole carrot.
Less kind people (we’re joking!) can go for the chilli and lemon crab straws with brown crab ketchup or burrata with charred peaches, shiraz-braised short ribs or tandoori monkfish skewers. There’s even a huge Cobble Lane charcuterie board with chutneys and crispbreads.
Famous for their cocktails, we opted for straight-up classic vodka martinis with a twist. And they have a twist of their own: if you tell them what flavours you like in your mouth, they will come up with a custom-built cocktail. We said we loved acid but also wanted to stick to what we’d started on so they magicked a unique lime-flavoured shaken martini with a lime twist, for flavour with an instant buzz, that we have never tasted before but will be tasting again. And the staff that pepper the place, in kicky outfits that make the summer sky pop, couldn’t have been lovelier. Totally nailed that sweet spot of cheeky, attentive, but not all over you like a bad haircut.
But even with all that distraction – and all those martinis! – plus all the slick contemporary furniture and the buzzy sit-up-at bar, you somehow never get away from that amazing view over St. Paul’s. Well, we did warn you.