From foraged ingredients and house ferments to a zero waste food offering, Hoxton’s soon-to-open cocktail bar Scout is set to celebrate great British produce on Great Eastern Street with inventive and unforgettable cocktails.
The bar which will only use fresh produce from the British Isles, will launch on 11th April and has been developed by renowned bartender Matt Whiley, the man behind Peg + Patriot in Bethnal Green and Talented Mr Fox – the city’s celebrated cocktail and bar branding and development consultancy. Matt is also the co-founder of award-winning bars, Purl and Worship Street Whistling Shop.
Seasonality underpins Scout’s menu, simplicity sets the scene and waste truly is a dirty word, with a focus on minimal waste to ensure it’s a conscious and sustainable operation that shouts from the rooftops how incredible produce from the British Isles is. Scout’s menus will adapt often, changing as produce from farmers and growers comes in and out of season, whilst available foraged ingredients and house ferments will combine to create unique twists on the classics and inspired modern signatures.
Exceptionally succinct, a well-appointed menu will feature just ten cocktails, five house ferments, five beers – one of which brewed in-house and served to share – and a small selection of natural wines: strawberry wine, gin lemon balm and whey; carrot, hemp seed and liquorice; and burnt beetroot, horseradish, apple and hay vermouth with herb oil.
The food menu addresses a common issue with cocktail bars, where ingredients used in mixology go to waste. A short ‘Snacks’ menu will maximise the use of every single ingredient that comes through the door of Scout ensuring that every usable part of each ingredient is taken advantage of. Dishes will include toasted sourdough with house kohlrabi sauerkraut and London coppa; fried vegetable skins with house seasoning; and pickled celeriac with truffle.
Set along Great Eastern Street, where Old Street meets Shoreditch, Scout is a comfortable and inviting space, designed in a modern, minimal style with interior details of natural surfaces, ample wood and rendered walls. The setting mixes comfort with style whilst the menu entices guests to try something different and eye-opening.
The basement boasts a Laboratory, a 10-seat private area featuring an exclusive menu of daily changing libations that the team are developing in real time for future menus. Providing a front row seat delivering insights into how Matt and the team create, adjust and perfect cocktails, this exclusive space and unrivalled experience is available for parties to pre-book. Mixology masterclasses and tastings for small groups will also fill a roster of evening events planned at Scout.
Matt Whiley, Talented Mr Fox
Having cut his teeth in some of the capital’s best bars and consulted on drinks lists, branding and training for an incredible array of London’s finest restaurants (Restaurant Story, Hoppers, Rök, Bone Daddies, Fera at Claridge’s) Matt wants to bring it back to basics with Scout, championing British ingredients in their prime. “If it’s not in season in the UK, we won’t buy it,” Matt says, adding: “we have such amazing produce in this country that I really wanted to celebrate what’s local, native and seasonal to the British Isles. There’s really no need to fly produce all over the world when we have an incredible bounty of fresh ingredients on our doorstep.” Scout’s sustainability is an important sticking point, as Matt explains: “the team and I will be fermenting, brewing, distilling and preserving a lot of our ingredients in-house here, throughout the abundant spring and summer and keeping us stocked right through the autumn and winter months”.