I appreciate I’m cheating a little bit with this review – I already mentioned Speak in Code in my post on Hidden Gems late last year, but to be honest, it’s so firmly cemented itself as a favourite, I can’t help but feel it deserves a blog post all of it’s own. Even though as I write this, I’m kind of hesitant because this means that you lot will all go there now and I won’t be able to get it any more.
For those in the know, Speak in Code is almost hidden away, on Jacksons Row, off Albert Square. By day, the site is a cafe, and by night (Wednesday – Sunday) it becomes a divine drinking den with an emphasis on ingredients. Inhouse cordials, infused spirits, shrubs, all with sustainability and creativity in mind.
Oh, and it’s vegan.
Yes, all the cocktails and the food – they have a small but select menu including a cheez board – is totally plant based.
But more importantly, it’s good. No I mean really, bloody good.
The cocktail menu is pretty hefty, and they’ve used a numbering system (which has since been adopted by Cocktail Beer Ramen Bun) – instead they’ve invested their time in creating the drinks. Peanut butter washed rum, coconut coated ice, Peruvian bitch juice, chipotle infused tequila. There are 85 (ish the number keeps growing) inhouse creations for their 22 strong cocktail menu. All these things take time, time saved on trawling through the thesaurus for another adjective, and are totally worth their extra effort.
I’ll give you a couple of examples.
This is the XXI. Botanist Gin, coconut and jasmine, almond, coconut waxed ice, edible coral reef, and lavender garnish. Floral, light, with soft round finish from the coconut and the almond.
Or this, the XV. They refer to this as their ‘Basic Bitch’ drink – the “I’m the type to cut you off halfway through your sentence and demand something sweet and fruity” type of basic bitch. Citron vodka, grapefruit liqueur, Peruvian bitch juice, pink citrus, pink grapefruit juice, aquafaba, Cava. Think tart and fruity. It’s got just enough bite behind the smile of the fruit.
I even, in the interests of a bar review, obviously, went off menu. This is a Clover Club, without a hint of egg white.
Frothy, tart, dry, fruity, everything it should be, totally vegan.
Whether you’re vegan or not, it doesn’t really matter. It’s all about choice and variety, and Speak in Code has all of that and more much more up their rolled up sleeves. They’re already collaborating with restaurants, chefs, and are branching out into take overs and pop ups.
I can’t wait to see what’s coming next.
All drinks were paid for by myself.