Restaurants citywide are celebrating America’s Independence Day with special menus brimming with BBQ, decadent desserts and fantastic cocktails. So celebrate the 4th of July like an American with The Resident’s pick of the best places to get your red, white and blue BBQ and booze fix…
Words: Ivy Bridges & Trinity King
Lead image: The Blues Kitchen
1 Balthazar Restaurant, Covent Garden
Don your best stars and stripes, because Balthazar insists you dress up to enjoy an All-American meal for free! If dressing up isn’t really you’re thing, you can still enjoy the meal for £25 a person. Start with a mouth-watering Balthazar burger and fries, or better yet the ‘Independence Day-Dog’, a hotdog layered with beef and crispy shallots. After the main, indulge in Hot Apple Pie and Vanilla ice cream. The meal wouldn’t be complete without a Budweiser, 4th July Crush, Pisco Punch or Alabama Slammer cocktail.
4-6 Russell Street, Covent Garden WC2B 5HZ; balthazarlondon.com
2 Hanger SW6, Fulham
The retro-style cocktail bar Hanger is jumping on the 4th of July bandwagon and offering 4th of July steaks. All day long and for £40 for two people, enjoy an American style sharing meat board: USDA hanger & tri-tip steak, bone marrow beans, fries & smoked tomato relish. To top of the filling-meal, make sure to try one of their bourbon cocktails (£5) from their speakeasy bar!
461 North End Road, Fulham SW6 1NZ; hangersteak.co.uk
3 Christopher’s, Covent Garden
In true American spirit, Christopher’s in Covent Garden is offering a BBQ-inspired menu, the quintessential American meal, from 3-7 July. Choose from a two course meal for £38 or a three course meal for £44. Try the BBQ pulled pork-tortilla with apple slaw to start. For mains, American classics are revamped, test out the Kansas-rubbed prime USDA rump steak with maple-whipped sweet potato. For dessert, try the drool-worthy ice cream sandwich or 4th of July cinnamon doughnuts styled after the colours of the Stars & Stripes. No matter what you’re craving, the rich menu would satisfy even the most discerning American.
18 Wellington Street, Covent Garden WC2E 7DD; christophersgrill.com
4 Texas Joe’s Slow Smoked Meats, Bermondsey
The best way to celebrate America’s Independence Day is stopping by Texas Joe’s over in Bermondsey for some real deal Texas BBQ. There are no bells and whistles to Joe’s thick slabs of meat; taste the true slow-smoked flavour with just salt and pepper. Signature dishes include USDA beef brisket, beef prime rib and pork shoulder, as well as mutton shoulder and ribs. At lunchtime try the fresh tacos and thick-cut sandwiches with a side dish of bone marrow with chilli salt; oxtail chilli; or brisket nachos. For an after-dinner drink, head to the honky-tonk bar for jukebox tunes and a glass of whisky, tequila, or award-winning Balcone bourbon.
8-9 Snowsfields, Bermondsey SE1 3SU; texas-joes.com
5 Smith & Wollensky, The Strand
Smith & Wollensky is celebrating 4th of July with a full weekend of USA-themed food, drink and festivities – including stars and stripes bunting! The celebrations will run all of July with a selection of all-American special dishes including the Independence Day Burger. Diners can wash down their food with a classic or contemporary US cocktail like the Barrel Aged Negroni (Jenson’s gin and Campari gently aged in a two litre American oak barrel with unaged Antica formula). On the 4th of July American-themed playlist will be blasting throughout the restaurant.
6 Louisiana-styled Crawfish Boil
In honour of America’s most celebrated holiday, Boondocks is bringing Londoners a taste of America’s south with their much-loved Louisiana-styled Crawfish Boil. For the entire month of July, you can enjoy mountains of spiced crawfish, potatoes, sweetcorn, Polish style beef sausage and garlic bread every Saturday and Sunday with a special crawfish boil on the 4th. Make sure to try one of their paletas (ice lollies) or brownies for dessert, and of course, it wouldn’t be an American-themed party if there weren’t various drinks available to choose from, including frosty beers, cocktails, Raspberry Lemonade and margaritas. Tickets are £30 per person, drinks not included.
205 City Road, Shoreditch EC1V 1JT; 020 3137 2671; belowboondocks.yapsody.com
7 Rib Eating Contest at Big Easy BBQ
Prove your American-spirit by trying your hand at Big Easy’s annual rib eating contest this Fourth of July. Big Easy is inviting 21 challengers to its Canary Wharf, Covent Garden and Kings Road restaurants to see who can eat seven racks of ribs in less than eight minutes. The winner will walk away with a £100 Big Easy voucher, medal, trophy, and of course, the bragging rights. Each of the runner ups will be awarded a £10 Express Lunch vouchers. If you’re ready to take on the rib-eating challenge, but still want to watch everything go down, make sure to try the Easy American cocktail: patriotically coloured rum slushie mixing Strawberry Daiquiri, Piña Colada and Blue Curaçao available at all sites for £8.50. The festivities kick off at 6pm sharp, so make sure to get there early for a good seat! The contest will take place at all three locations: Canary Wharf, Covent Garden and Kings Road.
8 Major League Baseball at Hyde Park
There’s nothing more American than baseball, and luckily for us Londoners, Hyde Park’s Open House is bringing America’s love of baseball right to the heart of the city. This 4th of July, England cricketers Jos Butler and Alex Hales will try their hand at America’s sport by batting for and against players from the Boston Red Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers in an all-star Home Run Derby. With street food and live music as well, Hyde Park will be the place to be to take part in the biggest 4th of July celebration this side of the pond. Admission is free and runs from 5-10pm.
9 4th of July at Mondrian London
Celebrate the 4th in style with Mondrian London’s slew of American-inspired events. The hotel’s bar, Dandelyan, will team up with Bobby Eldridge and Damon Roseberry from the Miami beach bar, Broken Shake to bring Londoners a taste of American drinks. Make sure to order a Wild Turkey 101 Old Fashioned, an American staple, after enjoying the cocktails of course. Sea Containers inside Mondrian will also be offering a one-off American-styled menu celebrating its American heritage by offering dishes like the All-American burger and the baby back ribs. If you’re not quite ready to say goodbye to everything-American, head on up to the Rumpus Room on the 12th floor where the Jazz and blues band Angela’s Quartet will be performing and more American-styled food and drinks will be available for you to enjoy.
20 Upper Ground, South Bank SE1 9PD; 020 3747 1000; morganshotelgroup.com
10 Independence Day at The Diner
Ring in the 4th by stuffing your face with some of America’s most delicious recipes. Only available on the 4th, the Diner will be offering an epic Independence Day menu at all of their locations. Stop by and try their Santa Cruz chicken burger or their Death Row BBQ Box — all the BBQ you could possible want including 1/2 rack baby back ribs, fried chicken, pulled pork, corn on the cob, two portions of fries, a side of Mac & Cheese and coleslaw. You’ll be saying ‘God bless America’ well before you’ve eaten the last bite. Don’t leave without trying their BBQ chocolate chip banana with banoffee ice cream and maple syrup.
Available at all locations; goodlifediner.com
11 American-Style Breakfast at Polo Bar
Americans love their 24-hour diners, so to truly get yourself in that 4th of July Spirit, head over to Polo Bar for their American-styled breakfast. From 9am–6pm on the 4th, you and a friend can, for free, share a stack of American pancakes or the American breakfast: pancake topped with streaky bacon and maple syrup served with slow roasted thyme tomatoes, roasted mushrooms, a hash brown, two eggs, sausages and Cajun sweet potato chips. Make sure to book in advance!
176 Bishopsgate EC2M 4NQ; 020 7283 4889; polo24hourbar.co.uk
12 Hot Dog Eating competition, The Blues Kitchen, Shoreditch
In true American spirit, The Blues Kitchen is hosting its 5th annual Hot Dog eating competition in Shoreditch. Twenty contestants will have 30 minutes to eat their bodyweight in hot dogs for the chance to win a £50 bar tab. If you’re not a big hot dog fan, you can still enjoy your choice of BBQ soul food (including spicy buffalo wings, cajun blackened shrimp, BBQ pork rib and beef brisket) from the Brixton, Camden and Shoreditch locations. Make sure to try a cocktail made from their extensive collection of American whiskeys. Have a U.S passport? Take it along to any of the Blues Kitchen venues for a free can of beer! The contest will be held at Blues Shoreditch but the BBQ menu is available at all locations.
13 Independence Day at Cahoots
Head over to Cahoots for the quintessential American night out. Cahoots has teamed up with Jim Beam Double Oak to present a new twist to the classic Kentucky bourbon as well as creative cocktails, Seeing Stars & Stripes, Dreamboat Dolly and Liberty Liquor. While enjoying your vintage cocktails, Lois of The Hotsie Totsies will be performing post-war classics for you to enjoy. With a possibility of a marching band making an appearance, you really can’t celebrate America’s most important holiday in a better way.
13 Kingly Court, Carnaby W1B 5PG; 020 7352 6200; cahoots-london.com
14 Fourth of July Menu at STK London
In honour of America’s most celebrated holiday, book yourself a table at STK London to check out their specially created Fourth of July menu. For £35 per person, you can enjoy bourbon BBQ beef short ribs, a choice of mac and cheese or corn on the cob, traditional American corn bread and top off the meal by indulging in the ‘Let Freedom Ring’ homemade vanilla ice cream and USA fruit meringue. Round out the perfect American meal with either a can of Budweiser or a root beer float.
336-337 The Strand, WC2R 1HA; 020 7395 3450; togrp.com
15 Dirty Bones
Stop by the Dirty Bones this year in any of their locations (Carnaby, Kensington, Shoreditch and Soho) to try their NYC-inspired comfort food and cocktail menu. Choose from dishes like cheeseburger dumplings and crispy-fried chicken and waffles while enjoying some old school hip-hop, funk and soul. There’s no better way to ring in the Fourth.
Located in Carnaby, Kensington, Shoreditch and Soho; dirty-bones.com
16 Old Bengal Bar
To celebrate this year’s Fourth, Spitalfields is offering the limited-edition Hundred Dollar Baby Cocktail. A twist on the classic Manhattan, the cocktail features Bacardi Oakheart instead of whiskey, Amer Picon bitters, Cynar, Maraschino cheery liqueor, green Tobasco sauce and cloves. Topped off with a glacé cherry and a $100 note, the Hundred Dollar Baby is available for £12.50 and will the perfect toast to this year’s Fourth of July.
16A New Street, EC2M 4TR; 020 3503 0780; oldbengalbar.co.uk
17 The American Bar at The Stafford London
The absolute best way to celebrate America’s favourite holiday is to stop by the American Bar at the Stafford London hotel. The walls are covered with American memorabilia, the bar is filled with artefacts, knick-knacks and signed celebrity photographs donated by patrons and guests and the menu is renowned for serving delicious Manhattans, Martinis and bar snacks. All in all, the American Bar is the place to celebrate America’s Independence Day.
16-18 St James’s Place, SW1A 1NJ; 020 7493 0111; thestaffordlondon.com