Where to go: Absinthe Bar Croque Monsieur

In December 2018, hidden in the depths of the basement of 245 Eversholt Street, London gained a new absinthe bar, Croque Monsieur. In this bohemian drinking den absinthe is taken from its dark history and catapulted into London’s present, as the world of this mysterious and potent green liquid is opened up to connoisseurs and newcomers alike.

Set downstairs from vampire themed pizzeria, Lost Boys Pizza, Croque Monsieur features absinthe fountains on each table, church pews as seating and Art Deco prints on the wall. Additionally, the room is filled with hats ranging from the ludicrous to the fancy, to be worn and swapped frivolously to help guests lose their inhibitions. Croque Monsieur offers an extensive range of brands, from reversed engineered liquids to more traditional names, meaning guests are able to enjoy absinthe in its purest forms, as well as in delicious and approachable cocktails.

Croque Monsieur’s new cocktail menu, focuses on making absinthe approachable, ensuring no matter what your experience with the spirit there will be a drink to suit your palette. The menu is divided in 3 distinct parts; ‘Beginner’, ‘Intermediate’ and ‘Advance.’ The menu includes some unique fruit led numbers such as the Sneaky Vimto, some reworked classics like the Chocolate Old Fashioned or the Grasshopper, as well some more punchy offerings such as Death in the Afternoon, a potent combination of absinthe and champagne.

Absinthe has such a rich tapestry of history and resident green fairy, Jenny Griffiths has been heading up a series of absinthe experiences at the bar to help demystify and educate guest on this wonderfully complex spirit. Croque Monsieur also hosts a series of insightful events with leading industry figures, ensuring this undervalued spirit continues its growing revival. The Camden bar invites guests to have wild and wonderful times with La Fee Verte, available for private hire and can be rented out for small gatherings and parties with a capacity of up to 18.

Combined 40 years-experience in hospitality, owners Alex Fisher and Peter Crozier-Clucas met twenty years ago while working at TGI Fridays and then spent their formative years working for such brands as Hard Rock Café, Planet Hollywood, Wahaca, The Living Room and Giraffe before climbing the management ranks to oversee branded restaurant operations and expansions in the UK and abroad and developing a reputation in consultancy. Alex and Peter set up Lost Boys Pizza and Croque Monsieur to combine their love of absinthe with a desire to create a fun and friendly space that’s all about great pizza and drinks.

The Verge team certainly had an amazing time, with friendly and passionate staff – Jenny, who loves being quizzed about absinthe and even how she got involved with bringing this experience alive. Erin who swiftly rounded up our cocktails whilst entertaining us, it set everyone at ease and at times guests from Lost Boys Pizzeria upstairs joined us below to get some drinks in. They must’ve heard us and caught a whiff of our amazing cocktails, my fave? – Sneaky Vimto and Death by Tropics. The place is so cosy and with dim lighting,  art deco vibe.  I don’t know if it was the drinks (probably was) – I felt like I was in Paris circa 1920’s.

We were then treated to Lost Boys Pizza – one pizza in particular brought back my goth vibes circa 90s (big fan of The Craft), famous charcoal dough base, topped with spinach with Goats Cheese sprinkled with nuts, (don’t quote me on this), drizzled off with basil in a shape of a pentagram. Total insta fest.