Mike checks in to the Courthouse Hotel to check out the 5th floor view
The summer party at the Rooftop at Upper 5th Shoreditch is a dry affair.
By that I mean only that the weather has, surprisingly, decided to briefly refrain from rain just long enough for Hotel Manager Darren Tanner and his team to supply us with samples from their new summer menu.
Myself and friend Adam are greeted by him and instantly given Ice-Tea Juleps with Buffalo Trace bourbon, peppermint tea and mint leaves.
Very refreshing on this most humid of days. Darren reassures us that three years since opening, this is still one of London’s chicest rooftop bars.
They have new dÃƒÂ©cor with exotic looking plants attacking from every angle and a permanent’Manhattan Station’, serving Manhattan cocktails (obvs) and the’Bloom Room’; bursting with fresh flowers. It’s pretty perfect for a warm summer evening.
We enjoy deli charcuterie, cheese and pea hummus with toasted pretzels whilst admiring the handsome view of the city’s oddball collection of scrapers huddled in a haze of summer particulates.
Taking in the stone faÃƒÂ§ade of Shoreditch town Hall in the foreground, we notice the ironic masonry chiselled motto: Ã¢â‚¬Å“ProgressÃ¢â‚¬Â. It seems tragic in the current political climate.
We drown our sorrows with the other sample cocktail on offer, the excellent Courthouse Collins with East London gin, St Germain, lemon juice, apple juice and sugar.
There is a non- alcoholic Exotic Fruit Booster of papaya and mango juices with passion fruit and cranberry but personally, I fail to see how it can be more of a boost than booze.
Still feeling peckish, we sidle up to the guys at the open grill, taking in the aromas and eyeing up their work as they compile sliders and skewer succulent prawns.
After a few counts of petty theft, we realize staff are loading up platters to deliver around to seated guests, so we plonk down in some stylish woven armchairs opposite what can only be described as an elevated alfresco double bed.
A couple of couples lounge on it and we wonder if they will either put on a show or fall asleep as the night progresses.
The trays keep coming. Oblongs of spiced swordfish are meaty delights, Tiger prawns with chilli garlic accompany small bowls of refreshingly sharp and sweet Asian noodle salad.
Before, in contrast come the bite sized Big Apple New York hot dogs with caramelized onion and mustard relish and the Upper 5th slider sized burgers with lettuce, tomato, cheddar in mini brioche. They slide down well Ã¢â‚¬â€œ is that why sliders are so named?
After gawking at all the beautiful rooftop people effortlessly posting glamourous Instagram stories and having inhaled everything the terrace team had to offer, we waft off to the lift and descend to the down-and-dirty, traffic honking, ordinary people filled, ground level metropolis.
Tragically, we easily blend back in where we belong, but we do feel somewhat elevated.
The Courthouse Hotel Shoreditch 337 Old Street,London, EC1V 9LL