Time Out says
A new Prohibition-inspired bar not far from Leadenhall Market.
London’s underground ‘speakeasy’ bars are increasingly becoming the city’s worst kept secrets. But at the City’s new Prohibition-inspired bar The Bootlegger, there’s no tell-tale neon sign or oversized doorknocker – it’s hidden between a Nando’s and a dry cleaners. Don’t be perturbed by the lack of signage. Head down the unexpected stairwell and you’ll find a basement bar whose exposed brick walls are adorned with archive photographs, dimly lit by copper pendant lamps and candles.
It’s clear that they haven’t scrimped on authentic details. There’s an old-fashioned till, a hooch distiller, and a gramophone – all in working order, although they’ve only got one record. But all this attention to detail can seem a little try-hard – miscellaneous jazz music? Tick. Staff in bow-ties and braces? Tick. Bar snacks served in enamel dishes that are suspiciously chipped in identical places? Double tick.
While the whole ‘speakeasy’ thing might be a bit overdone, the cocktails are spot-on. The Button Man and his Gat – a fragrant blend of vanilla vodka and amaretto with a zingy twist of lemon, pineapple and basil manages to satisfy a sweet tooth without tasting like liquid sherbet. And for those who like it hot, The Jake Walk – a spicy mix of rum blended with fresh chillies and lime juice – was pleasantly fiery without blowing our heads off.
If you’re in it for the long haul, they’ve got a few bar snacks: meat platters, olives and cheese boards. They’re tasty enough, but much like the bar’s hidden entrance, nothing stands out. With little to distinguish this place from the rest of London’s ‘secret’ underground bars, we fear that people won’t be booting down the door to get in. But we hope we’re wrong.
25-26 Lime Street
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Users say (4)
Average User Rating
4.5 / 5
- 5 star:2
- 4 star:2
- 3 star:0
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- 1 star:0
I've recently been here for a friend's birthday party and had a good time. I didn't know anything about the place before so I was surprised when I got to the entrance and find it hidden between a Nando's an a dry cleaner. The coctails were delicious (I recommend the Getaway if you have a sweet tooth like me) and I liked the decoration too (I even found wine bottles labelled for Al Capone).
Great find in the heart of the city, 1920's themed bar got livelier as the night went on, probably not the best place if you want to have a chat. We had wine so I cant comment on their cocktails although the ones going around looked great. The perfect place to go after work rather than your standard pub, definitely something a little different.
Huge surprise! This place is definitely something different, magical atmosphere and friendly and professional service, and great selection of signature cocktails. You have to go!
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