The busy streets of London can certainly work up a thirst, but how do you find the drinking dens that the locals keep to themselves? Lonely Planet has launched Wenzani, an app that tunes you in to locals’ recommendations, shows you updates from trusted travel experts and friends and lets you post your own travel discoveries.
Here are some of the picks from the British capital. Bottoms up…
Tom Hall, editor of LonelyPlanet.com, recommends…
The Prospect of Whitby
Once known as the Devil’s Tavern, the Whitby’s said to date from 1520, making it the oldest riverside pub in London. It’s firmly on the tourist trail now, but there’s a smallish terrace to the front and the side overlooking the Thames, a decent restaurant upstairs and open fires in winter. Check out the wonderful pewter bar – Samuel Pepys once sidled up to it to sup.
Starting life as one of the first London coffee houses (founded in 1703), with the 18th-century decor of occasional tile mosaics still visible, the JT is an absolute stunner, though sadly it's both massively popular and tiny, so come early to get a seat. There's good lunch food and, this being the only London outlet of St Peter's Brewery (based in North Suffolk), it has a brilliant range of drinks: organic bitters; cream stouts; wheat and fruit beers; many of which are dispensed in green apothecary-style bottles.
Joseph Bindloss, author of Lonely Planet London, recommends…
Older Londoners will remember this famous music venue from its punk rock days as the Music Machine, when it hosted the likes of the Clash and Boomtown Rats, but younger rockers are more likely to associate Koko with Coldplay and My Chemical Romance. It's still one of the best places in London to take in a gig.
Lily Vyas, blogger for London Cosmopolitan, recommends…
A local favourite tucked away on a quiet street in Farringdon. Extensive wine list from Spanish Rioja, Argentine Malbec, South African Pintage, New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, French Bordeaux, Australian Chardonnay. Wine lovers rejoice...if only they had a branch in every neighbourhood.
Bistro du Vin
Looking for a fun, hip and stylish restaurant in central London? This restaurant takes on the best of the French classics with a modern twist. Heavy emphasis on meat with an equally impressive wine list to match. Second branch is located in Soho.
Find more tips from trusted travel publishers such as Lonely Planet, Frommer's and Time Out, tips from local experts and bloggers, and add your own expertise to the mix by downloading Wenzani from the iTunes store.
Wenzani is available for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. Download it from the iTunes store, absolutely free.