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It's a good day when you can go from coffee to cocktail without leaving the building.

It wasn’t all that long ago that a Londoner would drag themselves off to a barista for a morning latte and, several hours later, to a bartender for a 5pm Martini – and never the two did meet.  Simple times, perhaps, but not exactly smart real estate usage - this is London after all.

What was once the domain of pubs, inexplicably open for breakfast but still firmly emitting the odour of last night’s beer-fuelled kick-out time, has moved on to the higher-end, local cocktail bars. As the recent spat of openings prove, from the new Bar Termini in Marylebone to Coupette in Bethnal Green, the two industries are starting to blur – London’s best bars are now firmly open for business early doors.

It makes a lot of sense really, especially as bar design is moving away from the gilded ornate to high-end simplicity. These venues, such as the light filled Three Sheets, can effortlessly double for somewhere to pitch up with a laptop during the day. The bartender baristas are pretty good on the coffee front too.

“Lightness, and airiness was key to everything,” says Max Venning, co-owner of Three Sheets with his brother Noel. “We’re not trying to look like a cocktail bar – there’s no shakers out, everything is stored under the stations and we don’t have a high back bar. It’s all about drawing attention to the bar itself which is where the conversations happen.” And those conversations can be stimulated with coffee or cocktails, day or night.

This move is partly influenced by the influx of bartenders getting a first chance to open a venue, often on tight budgets and in areas not exactly bursting with Costas, Prets or Starbucks, opening during the day acts as an extra revenue stream without a ton of competition from chains. Good news for the locals then.

Yet even in the busier areas Bar Termini, with its Italian-style espressos and pastries, have managed to thrive. Could it be that our cocktail prowess has finally ushered in a chance for London coffee to shine.

Move over Melbourne, you’re not the only rainy city with narrow streets and great coffee to cocktail spots anymore.

London’s Best Bars Opening During The Day

Mint Gun Club

Where: 4a Brooke Road, N16 7LS

Opens at: Midday

Bar Termini Centrale

Where: 31 Duke Street, W1U 1LG

Opens at: 8am weekdays

Bar Termini Soho

Where: 7 Old Compton Street, W1D 5JE

Opens at: 10am


Where: 423 Bethnal Green Road, E2 0AN

Opens at: 11am

Three Sheets

Where: 423 Bethnal Green Road, E2 0AN

Opens at: 8.30am weekends,

Martello Hall

Where: 137 Mare Street, E8 3RH

Opens at: 8am weekdays

Shoreditch Grind

Where: 213 Old Street, EC1V 9NR

Opens at: 7am weekdays