Hemingway, of course, is as famous for his boozing and womanising as he is for his writing, so it’s unsurprising that many bars around the world bear his name or serve a drink bearing it. This one, in the back of the Ritz Hotel Paris, is certainly one of the best cocktail bars in the world. The Bar is small and intimate with a warmth to it, and Hemmingway pictures on the walls. It’s easy to see why Cole Porter would spend up to 9 hours a day in the Bar composing, while F. Scott Fitzgerald had his favourite seat there, and Hemingway and Gary Cooper would sit and talk in the Bar for hours.
Under the stewardship of Colin Peter Field (a trainee of Alessandro Palazzi back in his Paris days working at the George V), the Bar Hemmingway offers up classic cocktails and its take on them, using ingredients from across world. It’s always good to see sake based cocktails.
The Bar’s classic drink is its Clear Dirty Martini, a crystal clear martini with an olive in an ice cube at the bottom of it. They make it in the little staff room off to the side as they keep its creation a secret. I won’t spoil it for you but its easy to tell how it’s done and, nice as it is, it still wasn’t enough to swing me round on my non enjoyment of dirty martinis.
The young team takes great care over the creation of each drink, paying particular attention to each element, even down to the cutting of the rose that accompanies any drink ordered by a lady. As you would imagine, it is not cheap (€25 a drink) but this is to be expected in a bar of this quality.
London Lamppost Score(4 / 5)
The Bar Hemingway
15 Place Vendôme 75001 Paris