Where to find a Prohibition bar in London.
Speakeasy bars are becoming are the latest London trend. So I checked out The Bootlegger.
The Bootlegger is a throwback to the Prohibition days in 1920s America when illegal drinking dens were forced to go underground during this time.
However, Prohibition bars are possibly London’s worst kept secret…
A small doorway in Lime Street led me to The Bootlegger. I could have easily missed it. In fact, I must admit that the first time I visited I actually walked past it, twice. There’s no huge sign or much indication that there is a bar there *hint: it’s hidden next to a Nandos*. Despite this, it is conveniently located minutes from Bank and Monument stations and it is close to Leadenhall Market.
We headed down to the dark basement bar and entered the bar with its brick exposed walls and dim lighting and candles. The place stays true to the Prohibition era and looks very authentic with a old fashioned till, 1920s style photographs, signs and newspapers covering the walls and live jazz entertainment.
It was a Friday evening so the bar was busy with workers sipping on wine and cocktails. We joined them and went for a cocktail each. The menus are printed on 1920s style newspapers and there’s a large selection of cocktails to choose from.
I recommend The Button Man and his Gat (£9.50) for the amaretto fans. This is a sweet blend of vanilla vodka and amaretto with a twist of lemon, pineapple and basil. We also loved the Right on the Kisser (£10). A fascinating blend of rum soaking up fresh banana and passion fruits shaken with fresh lime juice and lemonade.
The Bootlegger recently launched a new food menu with American themed dishes so we shared a hot dog; grilled cheese and chips generously smothered in cheese, sour cream and chillies.
The menu and dishes are simple and fuss free and the perfect bar snacks to be washed down with a few 1920s inspired cocktails.
The jazz band were absolutely incredible, an extremely talented trio who took us back to the 1920s.
To wash down our grub we went for a couple more cocktails. I highly recommend trying Cash or Cheque (£12.50). A sophisticated cocktail of vanilla vodka with fresh crushed lychees and Champagne. And the None of Your Beeswax (£10.50) was another winner in our eyes. A summery mix of Tanquerary gin with muddled cucumber and mint with a hint of elderflower then topped with prosecco.
There’s a really interesting variety of cocktails. There are cocktails which are mixed with Sauvignon Blanc, Frangelico (as I wrote about before in this post) or watermelon.
25-26 Lime Street