Swedish but not evidently so, Kosmopol is a cool cocktail bar with a superb list of liqueurs and spirits. It’s a good compromise for a quality drink without the usual pretentiousness of the area.
Inconspicuous from the outside, Kosmopol doesn’t play on opulent design to attract customers, although it couldn’t be considered dull.
You’ll find it split into a ground floor and a basement - each with its own bar - furnished with the Scandinavian sobriety of dark couches and tall square tables with measured extravagance courtesy of the rainbow lights, mirrors on the walls and a rather dashing private corner with an angular couch raised a few steps from the rest of the bar. Downstairs, a few booths allow small groups to sit together but the powerful sound system can hinder conversation.
The crowd here is 100% Chelsea; however, before assuming it’s too pretentious, you should know that most people come back because there’s no arrogance or flashing the cash attitude at Kosmopol. Obviously, most walk in with at least partial design gear but for the rest, the place is quite chilled and the staff non judgmental.
The basement works mostly as a club on Fridays and Saturdays (open until 2am) with a serious DJ occupying the booth. On Thursday, the same kick-ass tunes are delivered from the ground floor so, provided you don’t mind being a little squeezed in, there are chances of a dance move or two.
Kosmopol serves Thai snacks, professionally cooked in the neighbouring restaurant and served here at the same price (£2.45-£6 a dish). Choose between Goi Cuon (rice paper rolls with vegetables), coconut deep fried prawns, Gyoza (pork dumpling with bamboo shots and spring onions), Yasay Gyoza (vegetable dumpling with water chestnuts) or better known dishes like satay or yakitori chicken.
There’s a lot to say about the drink selection at Kosmopol, extensive in every department but the beers (only Asahi and Asahi Black at £3-£3.75). To start with the cocktails (£6.50-£9) they make good twisted classics like Van VX (Appleton VX rum, lime, lychee juice, vanilla liqueur and sugar), GG Verde (white grapes, Manzana Verde apple liqueur, Wyborowa lemon, Champagne), Sol Sken (Wyborowa orange, fresh passion fruit, Champagne, raspberry liqueur) or Lasting Passion (vodka, fresh passion fruit juice, gomme, soda and black raspberry liqueur). Shots (£5) are just as good - try the Hallot Baut (raspberry vodka, fresh raspberries, lemon) or indulge in a shot rack with six shots for £25, served with a sparkle.
The Champagne selection is long and touches every price, from £40 to £155. Wines, instead, are a just a few; all well chosen classic bottles going for a very decent £15-£28 (£4.50 a glass). Spirits and liqueurs take up entire pages of the menu, with an especially long list of whisky (£5-£24 for 50 ml) and vodka, with new brands like Kremlynovskaya or U’Luvka. Rum is not neglected either, with options including Sagatiba Cachaca, Mount Gay, Myers, Wray and Nephew, Wood’s 100.
The Last Word
Cool music and laid back service are the coronation to a great drink selection: Kosmopol is definitely worth trying.