Moby nicked: Hoxton bar raided over cocktail

The bar at Nightjar where the whaleskin cocktail was created. Pic: Nightjar

The Metropolitan Police raided a popular cocktail bar last week because it sold a drink flavoured by illegal whale skin.

Nightjar on City Road, Hoxton, was visited by the Met’s Wildlife Unit on Monday December 3 as a result of their ‘Moby Dick’ cocktail.

The cocktail contained the ingredient ‘whale skin infusion’, which was created by keeping a dried strip of whale skin in a bottle of whiskey.

By using the skin – bought by one of the bar’s employees in a supermarket in Japan last year – the bar were contravening EU law, which bans the hunting and trading of whales.

Police seized the bottle for testing but are yet to make any arrests.

In a statement released today, Nightjar’s director Edmund Weil said that the bar was unaware that they had been breaking the law.

He said: “We unwisely assumed that since it was obtained lawfully in its country of origin, we were not contravening any laws.

“In hindsight having this cocktail on our menu – regardless of the legal framework around such products or the quantity used – was a grave error in judgment.”

By way of apology, Weil said that the bar would be donating any proceeds from the sale of the Moby Dick cocktail to a whale conservation charity.

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