Ed Cootes at Plotting Parlour

Meet Edward Cootes

An Interview with Edward Cootes from The Plotting Parlour.

The Plotting Parlour, a proud recipient of two BRAVO awards for the best cocktail in Brighton, stands as a distinguished high-end drinking spot in the city.

Expanding their presence, they inaugurated their second venue in 2023 at the former Café Malbec, adjacent to LatinoAmerica in Hove.

Ed, owner of the PP, shares insights into his business, the significance of the BRAVO awards in Brighton, and offers a glimpse into their new venue and future plans.

How did it feel to win best cocktail at the 2023 BRAVOs?

The whole team at The Plotting Parlour were delighted to be awarded the Best Cocktails in Brighton at the 2023 BRAVOs.

It’s reward for all the hard work the team put in to curating our signature menu and perfecting the classics.

Being voted by the public means so much and without our loyal customers we wouldn’t have a business.

What makes your venue special?

At both The Plotting Parlour’s (Kemptown and Hove) we pride ourselves on excellent customer service. Whether you’re popping in for a quick drink or celebrating a big birthday with friends, our aim is to provide not only sophisticated drinks but to ensure every guest receives the best possible service.

Which cocktails are the most popular right now?

We have just released our new signature cocktail menu at both the bars and have also introduced a new page to the menu maintaining our signatures that have stood the test of time.

The Legacy menu include favourites such as the Tumi, St Pierre and Fear and Loathing.

low lit interiors at The Plotting Parlour

How would you describe the new Plotting Parlour in Hove?

We are so proud of The Plotting Parlour in Hove, or as the team affectionately call it “PP2”.

We absolutely love the bar and the ability to showcase all of our premium spirits. We were lucky to have the bar built by Gary Whittaker, an expert at what he does. He actually built The Plotting Parlour in Kemptown when it was refurbished from the Aquarium Pub. We’re lucky to have a cosy area in the basement which is available for private hire with a maximum capacity of 25.
PP2 has a much larger bar with bar seating which is extremely popular with customers wanting to chat all things spirits and cocktails with our bartenders.

Is this the career that you planned for?

I have worked in the hospitality industry since 2006 and have always loved what I do. I come from a restaurant background, but since owning The Plotting Parlour(s) my interest is very much in the world of cocktails and fine spirits. I have learned so much from my talented bartenders.

Which venues in Brighton do you enjoy eating at?

I love eating out and enjoy a wide range of cuisines. We all loved our staff Christmas meal at Cin Cin.

Ravioli at Cin Cin

I’m yet to dine at our award winning neighbours Wild Flor, shameful, I know!

Wild Flor Senior Chef de Partie

Wild Flor in Hove

Brighton and Hove is blessed with an abundance of great restaurants and bars. We at PP are always looking to work with our competitors and neighbours. There’s so much to learn from each other.

What advice would you give to an aspiring business owner?

Not to get carried away with the highs and not to get too down when things are tough.

The hospitality industry is extremely hard work, but equally rewarding. Your business is only as good as the team you have working for you. I’ve been lucky with that. As a business we are always looking at ways to improve and to fill the gaps in our knowledge. One never stops learning!

What’s next for The Plotting Parlour?

We are ambitious at The Plotting Parlour and we want to cement our position as one of the premium bars in Brighton and Hove. In terms of the future, 2024 is going to involve a focus on our mobile bar service. We love catering for private weddings, birthdays and events whether it’s in peoples kitchens or gardens. As for 2025…….how about a PP in London?!

Favourite drink?

I don’t shy away when it comes to a good cocktails.

I love a booze forward, dry drink. My latest go to is a Vieux Carré (Cognac, Rye, Vermouth, Bénédictine and bitters) Next time you’re in one of the PP’s ask for one, you won’t regret it and it most certainly won’t be your last!

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