It's that time of year again, when you can play puntastic bingo (let's see how many times the word "spooktacular" is used this year), fancy dress is an acceptable thing to have as a dress code for an event and restaurants all get a little ghoulish with their specials. So with that in mind, we've rounded up some of the best specials you'll be able to grab as Halloween approaches (with many available for delivery this year) and a few ideas for a night out too...
Special dishes & drinks
For Halloween, Crosstown have created the Halloween dough bites, made with Crosstown’s black cocoa dough, filled with homemade raspberry jam, topped with a dark berry glaze and then finished with a bat or pumpkin decoration - and they're vegan too.
When: From 15 October (delivery 28 to 31 October)
Where: Any Crosstown shop or order online for delivery
Ottolenghi has brought in Vanilla shortbread ‘mummified’ ghost biscuits, with white chocolate ‘bandages’ and dark chocolate eyes. Also for Halloween (but less obvious at first glance) are the brown butter and halve rice krispy trick-or-treats.
When: Until 31 October
Where: Notting Hill, Belgravia, Marylebone, Islington and Spitalfields
A yearly treat, the BAO pumpkin bao buns have returned. Filled with runny molten chocolate & salted egg custard you get four in a pack and can have them delivered right to your door.
When: Until they run out
Where: Nationwide delivery
Tommi's Burger Joint is serving up this burger which is a Black Angus burger patty layered with blow-torched blue cheese, grilled black pudding, shredded lettuce, Tommi’s "VOLCANO" sauce and Jalapenos, all inside a charcoal bun (and there's a vegan version too). It's apparently a team up with "extreme metal band" Calligram as part of their UK tour. From each burger, £1 will be donated to the charity Help Musicians.
When: 6-31 October 2021
Where: 37 Berwick Street, Soho, London W1F 8RS
Head to Laduree for sweet treats this Halloween. Their limited edition gift box, complete with glow in the dark design, features four popcorn-flavored macarons and four spooky vanilla macarons for £25.
When: 5-31 October 2021
The cult Cardiff ramen pop-up is coming to London and bringing with it a Halloween special. It's a Tonkotsu broth with shio tare, handmade thin hakata noodles, black garlic oil, garlic chips, braised pork belly chashu, kikurage, spring onion and half an ajitama egg. There's also a vegan version with vegan dashi and oat milk broth, and topped with tofu chasu.
When: 21 October - 20 November 2021
Where: BFI, 21 Stephen St, London W1T 1LN (and delivery too)
This year's special box of buns features three types of bun. There the return of the Spiced Pumpkin bun, stuffed with sweet, roasted pumpkin and peppered with star anise, cinnamon and cloves. New this year is the Mummy bun, made using roasted black sesame and tahini and the Ghost bun, which is filled with a sticky toffee custard cream.
When: 31/31 October 2021 (or preorder now for collection on 20 and 27 October)
Where: Soho - 26 - 27 Lisle Street, London WC2H 7BA
Head to Aqua Nueva just off Regent Street for a smashing Day of the Day dessert that'll really let you release pent up energy. Made from White Chocolate and Yoghurt Mousse with Raspberry, it's a terrifying treat.
Where: 30 Argyll St, London W1F 7EB
When;29 October – 2 November.
Halloween heralds the return of Gail's two spooky specials, their skeleton speculoos biscuits and the surprisingly moreish monster fingers made from chewy almond macaroon complete with almond fingernails.
When;From 18 October.
Finks in Highbury has two Halloween bottled cocktails on its shelves this Halloween. Spirit is a chocolate vodka martini but we're particularly taken by the idea of Old Sour Witch, a naturally coloured blue whisky old fashioned/whisky sour that changes from blue to pink when you squeeze in lemon. Magic!
Where: 70 Mountgrove Rd, Finsbury Park, London N5 2LT
When;On sale now.
Creams Cafe have a Crushed Bone and Blood Orange Sundae on offer 18 October – 4 November 2021 to dine in or get delivered.
MY&SANNÉ - Knightsbridge have two inventive cocktails for the Halloween period. The Munchkin Scary Spice features vodka and pumpkin puree and is topped with scorched meringue. While their Bloody Mary comes served in a blood bag.
Special Halloween events
The Long Halloween at Park Row (Soho, 31 October) - The Batman restaurant has chosen a particularly relevant Batman story as the theme for its Halloween party. Dishes at the meal include The Man Who Laughs! (Beetroot cured Salmon, textures of beetroot) and Death on Hallows Eve (Roasted Beef fillet, Ironbark pumpkin). The meal is £70 per person and there's an afterparty at their newly launched Old Gotham and Poison Ivy rooms too (£20)
Homeboy (Nine Elms, 30-31 October) - “The Hunt for the Wee Beastie” has the bar transformed into a 1950's vintage Hollywood B-movie film set, on an immersive experience as if you're part of the crew of a film, taking place from the smokey peat bogs of Islay to the lair of the Wee Beastie. There will be a special five drink menu, with drinks including the Islay 75 – Ardbeg, Lemon, Orchard Syrup and Moët. No tickets, just turn up on the night.
Balthazar (Covent Garden, 30 - 31 October) - This will be a reimagining of the Hell Café in Paris, which opened in 1892 and the ghosts of Paris’ age of jazz and cocktails will be bought back to life. The restaurant will also be adorned with a ghoulish installation, as well as offering a special "bloodcurdling" dessert, and reimaging classic cocktails.
Boxpark (Croydon, 7 November) - Every food vendor will have a Halloween special on the night, but it's the Day of the Dead event that you'll really want to go to. They've teamed up with Lucha Libre World to present a night of Mexican Lucha Libre, also known as ‘freestyle wrestling’. Tickets are free.
Brasserie of Light at Selfridges is becoming Brasserie of Fright for Halloween weekend with characters like Pennywise and the Shining Twins popping up around the restaurant and a special cocktail and dessert menu on offer
Discount Suit Company (Shoreditch, 31 October) - They're bringing back the Halloween Jack The Ripper Walks (£20). They kick off with a hot punch, followed by a tour of the backstreets and a table at Discount Suit Co for the evening, with 25% off drinks.
El Pastor (Soho, Borough, King's Cross, 30 October) - All of the restaurants will host Dia de Muertos parties with a free Marigold Margarita for anyone in fancy dress.
Kraken Screamfest (28-30 October) - Kraken rum is running an immersive haunted hotel experience. If you're "lucky" you'll be invited to stay the night, but should be prepared to be kept away by spooky events until at least 2am. Essentially a hotel designed to give you a terrible night's sleep. It's £10 to get in and cocktails are £5.
Shocktoberfest at Campfire (King's Cross, 30 October) - Two Tribes' Campfire is becoming a Hellish Munich Beer Hall for the night. They'll be serving up Bratwurst all night alongside their two-pint steins, filled with Oompa Lager (and £35 will give you unlimited refills for 90 mins).
Halloween Hiijinx at Hijingo (Shoreditch, 30 - 31 October) - as well as running Halloween-themed bingo nights, Hijingo will also be dressing up a la Squid Game and running a red light-green light game. Hopefully it'll be a little less fatal...
Swingers (Shoreditch and West End, 29 - 31 October) - the crazy golf spaces will feature cobwebbed entrances, the ‘Trick or Treat?’ wheel of fortune for prizes and a special Trick or Treat cocktail menu will be on offer as well as zombie caddies manning the course.
Coya (City and Mayfair, 30 October) - both Coya Angel Court and Coya Mayfair are holding Halloween brunches with live entertainment and twists on classic dishes.
The Anthologist (City, 31 October) - is celebrating Halloween with Fat Tony’s Full Fat Halloween Brunch with Dracula's Blood Patron cocktails and fancy dress encouraged.
The Standard (King's Cross, 31 October) - is turning itself into a hotel of horrors complete with screenings of The Shining and more.
Camden Market's Hawley Wharf (Camden - up to 31 October) London’s first Pancake Art Café, To Home From London is having a Bloody Brunch and there's a fiver off if you're in costume.
Le Cocktail Shop (Holloway - 30 October) - celebrate All Hallows Eve with cosy fire pits, cocktails, street food and horror movies - all set on their outdoor terrace.
Theatre Royal Drury Lane (Covent Garden - up to 31 October) - one of the most haunted buildings in the world is having late-night theatre tours for Halloween for the first time, kicking off with cocktails in the Cecil Beaton bar.
Dirty Bones (Kensington - 31 October) - is having a movie and chill night. Tickets are £15 including a drink, popcorn and Ghostbusters on the big screen.
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