Temple and Sons

The venue has been known to serve some of their unique cocktails in he Colman’s mustard jar or  temple branded tinned tuna style cans

The new bar menu was still in a transition period and is set to take over the speciality grilled meats and a la carte menu that Temple and Sons were offering up to the day before we visited.

tea at Temple and Sons

The change is largely due to the establishment proving more popular for drinking and as a late night bar than food, we only found out on arrival.

bar booth seating

Temple and Sons on Old Broad Street is located directly below Jason Atherton’s Michelin starred City Social and was aimed at a much more casual clientele. Think jeans and t-shirt instead of suit and tie.

restaurant sign above the stairs

The Blenheim design staff thought we would stay for a quick nosey at the interior and a cup of coffee anyway, but nothing more adventurous for a mid-morning.

bar view from above Temple and sons

After all, the venue has been known to serve some of their unique cocktails in strange things, one being the Colman’s mustard jar and others in temple branded tinned tuna style cans.

bar glass storage

The venue itself is on a small footprint in a glass walled wedge shaped building in the heart of the city, and although it is over two floors increasing the capacity it is difficult to imagine it would compete as well as the very nearby bar and restaurant the Broadleaf.

glass box interior

The design challenges herein lie with what to do with such an expanse of glass walls and exposed steels.

subtle fox

The designer has adopted a screening and shelving technique by lining the interior perimeter with cubbyholes and black painted scaffolding poles floor to the ceiling on the ground floor.

fizzy pop sign

The detail is carried through to the bar gantry and both share internally illuminated signs telling the customer the food and drink offer. I guess some of those signs may need to be revised if they don’t appear on the new bar menu.

restaurant window display

Overall the interior is more of a miss than a hit compared to other drinking establishments. It was going to be a tricky site to create the right ambience but even some of the finishing details don’t work together harmoniously, well executed or perhaps not finished.

duran duran poster

One glaring standout disaster is that rusted steel effect stair balustrade with drilled holes that doesn’t go with anything in the interior.

ugly balustrade

The grey floor tiles appear to hold the dirt quite well and look utilitarian against the random mix of furniture pieces which are unfortunately upholstered and painted in questionable colours.

bar gantry design

Another odd design choice is the use of antiqued mirrors on new walls and the underside of the framed and  suspended ceiling rafts.

fast food seating design

There are a few details we did like which were the table tops with metal corner edgings, the reeded glass panels, fresh herb planters on tables, and some of the set dressing items such as the old cash register and tea pots.

metal table edging

 Service was good, the staff were friendly and this seemed to be bringing any ratings up in our expectations, but when we ventured to look at what the washrooms were like we were literally dazzled by the exceedingly bright stage mirrors. To some degree blinded our eyes from the riot of band fly posters across the walls. Maybe in an evening setting when the bar is busier and the atmosphere is more vibrant some of these critiques would seem less noteworthy but we don’t feel the need to venture back to Temple & Sons anytime soon.

22 Old Broad St, London EC2N 1HQ

Temple and Sons