Ever wanted a pub experience that's nothing like you've ever experienced before? We headed down to Finch's House of Happiness to see how we could change our Monday Blues.
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Mondays + January = not the best combination we can imagine. In fact, when we saw that #BlueMonday was trending we were tempted to hide under the duvet and not come out until the next morning. But this would have been foolish as A) we would have lost our jobs, thus exacerbating the misery and B) we would have missed out on Finch’s House of Happiness.
The pub was always going to be the natural refuge on this chilly, rain-spattered night - but an evening spent at Finch’s in Moorgate hiked the hygge to a new level. For those that somehow avoided having Blue Monday shoved down your throat on social media, this is the day that’s statistically the most depressing of the year. We’re at our poorest, the New Year’s Resolutions are slipping away fast, and there’s a whole lot of winter to go without any foreseeable island of respite.
That is until we entered the warm glow of Finch’s and were presented with slippers.Yep, the geniuses behind the House of Happiness realised that there are some things that make a night spent in the boozer ever better - and one of these is wandering around in squishy slippers, holding a pint and pretending you’re at some reverse, anti-detox spa.
Another surefire crowd pleaser is free whisky tasting, and comforting food of the stew, cheese, quiche and sausage roll variety being handed out for free. A DIY cake station had many a fan too, and there were frothy coffees doing the rounds, with comforting messages of support to allay any Blue Monday woes.
Of course, getting your hygge on isn’t all about imbibing and chomping your way through tasty treats. This Danish phenomenon (roughly pronounced as ‘hoo-guh’) encourages people to embrace a sense of togetherness and joy in the simple things - like letter writing. The last time we wrote a letter was under extreme duress, to thank Aunt Susan for an ill-fitting jumper she’d sent for our 14th birthday - so it was rather nice to sit and pen a positive note to our pals, then pop it in the cherry red post box.
On top of this there were a plethora of board games, around which animated groups of friends tried to act like they were having a jolly time and weren’t dead set on winning, and free massages for those needing the stress levels lifted. And to top it off, the chaps from Laughology were on hand to give us a Happiness Boost with a quick set that encouraged everything from touching up your neighbour (less dodgy than it sounds), and revealing intimate facts about ourselves (apparently this is also a key to bonding). There was even a spot in the corner to get down and bendy with some free yoga classes.
If this sounds like a lot of activities, it’s because it really was - and Finch’s is ideally set-up to offer this variety, with a lower floor of snug nooks and crannies, armchairs and sofas, and an upstairs for dining or sitting around a table to argue over who’s stealing money in Monopoly. The lamp light is glowing, there’s an olde worlde rustic feel to the place with wooden tables and beams, plus flickering firelight in the grate - essentially the kind of cosy bolt-hole we’ll be making a beeline for whenever we fancy a does of cheer.
Plus there’s a new winter menu that includes dishes like beef shin stew and horseradish dumplings slow roasted salt beef with colcannon, black cabbage and fried duck egg, and comforting spiced rice pudding with pistachios and pomegranate - well, we need the extra layers to keep the chill out. And every weekday until 24th February, Young’s and Geronimo Inns will be offering a new winter warmer menu, with two meals for £20 or two for £24, featuring a contemporary collection of rustic home- style cooking and feed the soul without breaking your money-saving resolutions. Hygge got yourself a date…
What to Wear to The Pub
The pub is usually a more relaxed affair, so you don't want to go too overboard with what you're wearing. Stick to something comfortable and casual by wearing a simple white T-shirt or shirt, a pair of blue denim jeans with a leather biker jacket thrown over the top. A simple yet classic look that will take you from the pub to a night out afterwards.
Finch’s Pub is located at 12A Finsbury Square, London We1AN. Website: Finchspub.co.uk Want to more about hygge? Why not check out hyggehouse.com.