Top 5 Cocktail Experiences in London
If you’re looking for a fun date idea, check out these quirky bars in London. These are all original experiences that are sure to put a smile on your face.
If you’re a history geek, you can’t go wrong at this immersive cocktail bunker themed on Bletchley Park, the home of Second World War code-breaker Alan Turing. Whisper your codes into a retro telephone and you’ll get bespoke cocktails sent to you.
London is home to a huge number of cocktail bars, from swanky hotels to traditional pubs and everything in between. But one of the coolest – and most unique – experiences in the city is ABQ, an immersive molecular cocktail bar inspired by TV show Breaking Bad.
Set in an American RV motorhome, the experience is set up like a chemistry lab in Heisenberg style and all of the equipment you need to get into character – including hazmat suits, goggles, aprons and masks – is provided. You will be taught how to use dry ice and experimental chemistry techniques, which you will then apply to your own cocktail concoctions!
ABQ is a fun and wacky experience that you will reminisce about for years to come. The chemistry experiments are fun and the drinks themselves are pretty creative. It’s definitely worth checking out if you have some time in London!
ABQ is located at 18 Bohemia Place, a lively street in Hackney with loads of hip bars and breweries. You can get there easily by taking the Overground to Hackney Central, and walking down Bohemia Place.
Alcotraz was one of London’s first ever immersive cocktail experiences, causing a storm in Brick Lane before it opened its flagship venue in Hackney Road. Set to open in November 2022, it’s triple the size of its Brick Lane site and will hold up to 180 hooch-swilling cocktail-drinkers at once.
Inspired by Hollywood movies and TV shows that have brought to life America’s most infamous prison, Alcotraz is the best way to enjoy an illicit drink within an epic yet intimate environment. Don orange jumpsuits and smuggle your liquor past the Warden and into the hands of the longest serving inmates, who will create a range of personalised cocktails for you to sip in their cells!
This experience is suitable for groups of friends, and will be a memorable night out in the making. Don’t forget to bring your own bottled spirit, which will be used as the main ingredient in a range of bespoke concoctions created by the bar’s finest bootleggers. The team at Alcotraz can advise you on which spirits to choose, so contact them if you have any questions before booking. They can also help you plan the perfect hen do, birthday party, Christmas celebration or corporate event. They even offer a range of packages, so get in touch to see what they can arrange for you! They’re also the only immersive theatrical cocktail experience that combines an impressive setting with a bespoke cocktail creation.
A night out with the girls is always a good idea, and a girls night out in a sassy cocktail bar in London’s Waterloo is one of the best places to catch up. With trendy neon signs and decorations that are begging for instagram snaps, it’s the ideal place to take your bande de filles for a night out on the town!
Taking inspiration from the French empress, Josephine de Beauharnais, Tonight Josephine is a sassy cocktail experience that pays homage to her famous motto ‘well behaved women don’t make history’. With two neon-lit locations in Waterloo and Shoreditch, this sassy hot spot boasts all the best cocktails and sexy events – from themed brunches to burlesque nights (Britney Brunch anyone?).
There’s an Instagrammer’s dream vibe here, with pink walls, mirror ceilings and a slew of naughty slogans that are all over this millennial dreamland. The sign boards, bar posters and celebrity mugshots – including those of Lindsay Lohan, Paris Hilton and Justin Bieber – create a whole bunch of photo ops in every corner.
The menu is equally as sassy, with sweet-sounding concoctions like No Time For Napoleon, gin based with a macaroon on top and Midnight Flower that blends gin, pineapple juice and lavender syrup. We also loved the Love Potion, a tangy cocktail served in a glittery sugar-rimmed glass with strawberries and prosecco! You can book a table at this sassy bar for a girl’s night out, bachelorette parties and birthdays.
Bar Elba is London’s answer to a dreamy party island. Taking its name from Napoleon’s exile to the Mediterranean, this fifth-story rooftop bar in Waterloo is decked out in eye-popping colours and unashamedly leans into the beachy vibes of its namesake.
In the winter, it’s covered to protect you from the weather, while in summer, it’s uncovered so you can soak up some rays and admire the sweeping views across the city. It’s a popular spot for birthday parties and hen nights, so it doesn’t hurt to book in advance!
The drink menu is pretty extensive, with a range of beer, Aperol Spritz and Frose options. They also serve some pretty summery cocktail jugs, so you can make sure you have enough booze to last you the night.
They’re open all day for coffee and lunch, and dinner is served until midnight, so you can easily stay for the whole evening. It’s also one of the most budget-friendly places to drink in london, with beer and cocktails ranging from PS5-PS12 per glass.
It’s also a great place to grab a bite, with dishes such as Dip & Flip burgers and grilled shell crab, available at lunchtime. The restaurant is a little noisy, but the cocktails are worth the experience, so head there for a cheeky tipple and some tasty food.
Located within Viktor Wynd’s Museum of Curiosities, this wacky boozer is a must-visit for all your weird and wonderful cocktails needs. The staff are extremely friendly and the drinks are delicious.
The Looking Glass Cocktail Club
The Looking Glass Cocktail Club is an Alice in Wonderland-inspired bar that has a sultry and snazzy feel. With mirrors inspired by the film, antique furniture, and an ethereal atmosphere, the club oozes elegance and class.
The bar is a stylish speakeasy, situated on the hip and yet undiscovered Hackney Road. Step through the opulent ‘looking glass’ to enter a quirky’secret room’, a parallel world of decedent debauchery and tantalising entertainment. Featuring moody subtle lighting, Louis XVI inspired furniture and brocade fabrics, this is the perfect place to host an event and sip on some of the best cocktails in London!
For those who want to escape the hustle and bustle of the city, the Looking Glass Cocktail Club is a perfect option. With a variety of innovative drinks and house music vibes, this place is the perfect way to spend Fever and enjoy a night out with your friends or loved ones.
Looking Glass offers a fusion of live music and performance art, challenging the powers of perception by exposing its audience to titillating events. It is home to Sessions 58 – the hottest acoustic sessions in town, and has hosted some of the most wild and wicked events in the East End. The bar also hosts private parties and corporate functions and is a great venue for DJ sets, theatre, and other events. With a spacious and personalised’secret room’, a mesmerising cocktail menu, flexible catering options and a friendly events team, you can be sure that your special day will be one to remember at the Looking Glass Cocktail Club.
The Detective Agency
One of London’s latest and greatest cocktail experiences is The Detective Agency. Located in the Earls Court area, it is a speakeasy-style bar that has got to be seen to be believed. The best part is that it’s actually hidden behind a bookcase in the office of a private detective, and you will need to be lucky enough to get into this one.
A buzzer sounds and you descend into what appears to be a basement office of an American detective agency from a long time ago. Only after your credentials have been thoroughly vetted will you be allowed access to the bar and its impressive cocktails, including an Old Fashioned that was rated as being the best in the world.
The place is a little too loud for a quiet date night but it is a great experience to have with friends. The drinks are on the pricier side but they are worth it. The decor is top notch and the staff are exemplary.
The Detective Agency is a great way to experience the secretive side of london’s ever-growing collection of secret underground bars. It is certainly the best entry into a bar we’ve had in a while and we would highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good cocktail or two with friends. The name is a nod to the most famous of all detectives, Sherlock Holmes and his assistant Watson, who have helped solve many of our most complex mysteries.