What can you tell us about Coupette?
It comes from Chris Moore, former head bartender at the Savoy's Beaufort Bar, who's going it alone in Bethnal Green. He's brought with him head bartender Franck Dedieu, formerly of Redwood, and assistant manager Dan Schofield, formerly head bartender at 69 Colebrooke Row. So there's a lot of experience here.
And it's very French?
Right down to the francs embedded onto the bar itself, absolutely yes. And that's something which helps to make Coupette stand out from the rest. The menu itself is split into six renowned French leading lights, with the cocktails themed after them. And the menu has a great feature which has artwork highlighting their career hidden in pages between the sections (you have to look through the book like a rolled up tube to see them).
Is there a must-have drink?
It really has to be the Champagne Pina Colada - Bacardi, pineapple, coconut sorbet, Moet + Chandon Brut and topped up with a pile of coconut (£10). It's certainly one of their signatures and, as you can probably tell from the ingredients, it's essentially a Pina Colada pimped up to the max. We LOVE the classic cocktail and this takes it up several notches. You could happily spend an evening knocking these back.
There are regularly changing drinks too?
Yes - and a lot of those shifts come from the changes in the featured calvados of the month. Calvados is a big feature in the bar - there's a section of the menu dedicated to it - so a few of the drinks have an apple hit to them. No more so than Apples, which mixes that calvados with the cold pressed apples of the month, carbonated on site.
But we went for the Second Time Around (£9), again featuring that calvados with Montbazillac, triple triple sec, marmalade and bee pollen and lemon. Like your five-a-day distilled into a single punchy cocktail.
Anything else stick out?
We love a Collins at the best of times, so had to put the Cocoa Collins to the test - Bacardi Carta Blanca, Cocoa Butter, La Maison Fontaine, Nibs, Vanilla, Citrus, Soda (£9). All the tastes of a cocoa flavoured Collins in a completely clear cocktail. Very impressive.
And there's food too?
There WILL be food, but alas it wasn't quite ready during our early visit. But as there's a whole lot of croque monsieur, we think it'll be well worth a visit for the food too. They're also planning weekend brunch as well.
London's been blessed with some excellent new bars in recent months and this is definitely one to add to that list.
Where: 423 Bethnal Green Road, London E2 0AN