Based close to Clapham Junction, SouthSider Cocktail Bar is a new venture by brothers Robin and Daniel Webb and general manager Alex Clark.
Opening in what used to be a Thai restaurant, SouthSider Cocktail bar is being billed as ‘all about the drinks and the vibe.’
With a cool, relaxed atmosphere SouthSider Cocktail Bar includes comfy booths, exposed brickwork and street art on the walls.
Work began on the bar in August 2012 and was completed on Thursday 6th December.
Robin Webb, Director at Jello Fish Management Ltd said:
“Myself and my brother have another grill and cocktail bar on Clapham High Street and we wanted to do something just cocktail led – ideally something high end and for an older crowd. We want to serve our competition winning drinks in the bar so not just judges get to try them but also the general public.
“When we came in we thought it was going to be a quick paint and decorate job, but it turned into a full scale renovation because the conditions of the building were so poor. Some of the walls were crumbling and the head height wasn’t high enough so we ripped out the whole front of the shop. We took out all the floors, used steel beams to raise the floor by 200ml so we could put toilets in the basement and put steel supports in all the walls to try and support the flat upstairs. We have also re-done the flooring and installed new tiling work.
“Rather than having a main contractor and an architect I have done most of the work myself. I designed the bar myself and did most of the work along with just a small team of builders. We have a booth area which we want to use as a cocktail version of a chefs table in a restaurant. Customers can come down and chat to the barmen, attend talks on different spirits and do tastings.”
SouthSider Cocktail Bar features a bar built with brick tiles and a granite work top. There is also soft leather booth seating, high tables and bar stools around the bar where customers can sit, lounge and enjoy their cocktails.
Based inside an old building, one of the challenges of the project was to make the space suitable for use.
“It’s a very old building – when we were peeling back the walls we took off plasterboard, behind that was five layers of wallpaper, then behind that there was wood cladding, then brick. Peeling up the floor we were finding tiles that were pre- Second World War and newspaper which had been used to pack out the flooring.
“We have stripped the wall back to a bare brick wall on one side. We’ve had do everything from scratch- we’ve put a new bar in, new seating, we have soundproofed the building and have found an old fireplace which we have renovated.
“It has turned out to be a bigger project than we thought but it’s gone well. It’s been tiring but generally I’ve loved it, we’ve had a chance of not just building a cocktail bar that we’re proud of and that looks the way we’d hoped – but also we’ve actually built it. We can say we did the plumbing, the hard graft, we were here every morning and night to get it finished.”