London’s Best Themed Bars
London can be accused of many things but not having a thriving bar scene is not one of them. And one of the things the capital does better than anywhere is a themed haunt. Whether it’s a secret 1920’s speakeasy or an RV based on your favourite drug pushing TV show, London’s bars go all out. Here’s what we think are some of London’s best themed bars.
Location: 167 Drury Lane, WC2B 5PG.
Nearest Station: Covent Garden
Inspired by the likes of Goodfellas and the Godfather, Bunga Bunga is only be accessible through a giant meat freezer in the back of BungaTINI, an Italian bar and all-day pizzeria on Drury Lane. Once there, Joes need to negotiate with the resident butcher to enter the 200-cover restaurant for a night of pasta, pizza, comedy and even live opera. Like the very best themed bars, there’s a real sense of fun as well as top quality booze.
Location: 9 Crutched Friars, EC3N 2AU.
Nearest Station: Aldgate
We make no secret of our love for German beer halls, and luckily London has a fair few on them. Our favourite in the capital is the Bavarian Beerhouse near Tower Hill. Coming complete with waiters and waitresses in lederhosen, the Beerhouse offers up crisp brews in stein glasses, while also serving up hearty and traditional German sausages, schnitzels and sauerkraut. The beer is chilled, the food is great and there’s always a good vibe around. As well as Tower Hill, there’s also a Bavarian Beerhouse on Old Street for all you City workers and Shoreditch hipsters.
Location: 455 Hackney Road, E2 9DY.
Nearest Station: Cambridge Heath
Inspired by the Heisenberg and his cooking skills in Breaking Bad, the premise to ABQ London is simple; enter an RV, put on your yellow overalls, and get cooking. Science, bitch. The cocktails on the menu are all inspired by the show, and each cocktails need some novelty scientific gadget to make. Your ticket gets you 2 hours in the RV which includes the cooking of 2 cocktails and a welcome drink. The hosts are attentive, fun and enthusiastic and the attention to Breaking Bad detail is amazing – there’s a giant neon Heisenberg watching over you, for example. Just don’t wear any sweaters – things can heat up when you’re cooking!
Location: 127 Shoreditch High Street, E1 6JE.
Nearest Station: Old Street
Even the most ardent football loathers can’t deny the unadulterated joy found in table football. Which means that Bar Kick and its abundance of foosball tables in Shoreditch makes for a brilliant night with friends. The bar is European inspired and as such, there’s plenty of imported beers and there’s even sangria served up by the jug. It may be in the centre of Shoreditch’s bustling nightlife scene but there’s a real beach bar feel to Bar Kick.
Mr Fogg’s Tavern
Location: 58 St Martin’s Lane, WC2N 4EA.
Nearest Station: Leicester Square
For some true London eccentricity, Soho’s Mr Fogg’s is really three spaces in one; a London tavern, a gin parlour and home of Victorian explorer, Phileas J Fogg. The Tavern itself serves up real ales, ‘mother’s ruin’ gin cocktails and grog in traditional tankards and pewter cups, while next door to the Tavern, you’ll find the Gin Parlour complete with a chaise-longue or three, velvet curtains and a plethora of trinkets. Downstairs of the Tavern, they also serve up a food menu offering ‘honest fare’: pies, mash and sausages.
Evans & Peel Detective Agency
Location: 310c Earls Court Road, SW5 9BA.
Nearest Station: Earls Court
‘Our specialist areas are blackmail, missing persons and armed personal protection. There is no case too big or small, from missing pets to alien abductions, we’ve solved them all.’ Whatever the case, Evans & Peel Detective Agency is the crime-solver for you. Upon finding the secret entrance to this speakeasy bar, you’ll find yourself in a room where you’ll need to explain your case to a detective before entering one of the most unique drinking dens in the city. This prohibition establishment serves your beer in brown paper bags and your drafts are poured through antique radiators. The cocktail list features all the classics including Old Fashions and whiskey delights, and there’s also an on-site smokehouse with sliders and sharing plates the order of the day.
Location: 273 West End Lane, NW6 1QS.
Nearest Station: West Hampstead
West Hampstead’s new Bobby Fitzpatrick venue is all about the 1970s. Spread across two floors, Bobby’s feels like your Nan’s lounge full of memories collected over a lifetime. Being from the 70s, there’s plenty of shag-pile carpets and the food and drink echoes the era with cherry cola cocktails, Pina Coladas, and delicious stone-baked pizzas all on offer. Bobby Fitzpatrick is a place to sit, relax, and breathe in the nostalgia.
Location: 13 Kingly Court, W1B 5PG.
Nearest Station: Oxford Circus
Cahoots is a former air raid shelter which has been converted into a 1940s-themed speakeasy bar, complete with original features and even a ticket office. Not only are all the bar staff in character but there’s also a tube carriage where you can kick back with one of the bar’s numerous top notch cocktails. There’s a short menu of 40s-themed snacks, which includes the likes of crumpets and marmalade, and crisps and salad cream sandwiches.
Location: 129 City Road, EC1V 1JB.
Nearest Station: Old Street
Recently voted one of the World’s Best Bars, Nightjar in Shoreditch is another basement bar which is defined by its 1920s Prohibition glitz. The low-lit room with comfortable seating puts on live music every night of the week with mostly jazz- and blues-orientated artists. This is a speakeasy bar but the cocktail menu is playfully divided into different eras (pre-Prohibition, post-war, etc.) A warning: it gets busy, so you’ll need to pre-book a table online.