Meeting your mistress? Not come out the closet yet? On the wagon? Everyone’s got a reason for a bit of secret boozing. Here’s our pick of the best bars to hide away in, and rest assured if you can hardly find them then no one else stands a chance.
NightJar - London
Hidden between two cafes near Old Street roundabout sits the best thing to happen to Shoreditch since the Trilby. Walk down the stairs and you’ll feel like you’ve stumbled across a speakeasy in 1920s New York. Dress up, get yourself a Manhattan and kick back to the jazz. It’s the real deal down here.
129 City Road, London, EC1V 1JB
Dusk Till Pawn - Manchester
From the outside this place is disguised as an old pawn shop with its barred front and stuff in the windows, so you’d be fooled into walking right on by. Once safely inside it’s a good place to hide out and get stuck into your bourbon, they’ve got loads of the stuff and a free jukebox. Don’t over cook it and reach for the guitar in the window, remember this ain’t no pawn shop.
Stevenson Square, Northern Quarter, Manchester, M1 1FB
Blind Tyger - Leeds
Blind Tyger is a bar that can only be found by those that know where it is. Hidden above Leeds’ legendary bar Sandinista, this is the only Prohibition speakeasy this city boasts. You’ll feel like you’ve stumbled across a naughty, candle-lite hidden gem with dusty book cases and stuffed animal heads mounted on the walls. Smooch in the dark corners and oggle over the designer ice.
51/2 Cross Belgrave Street, Leeds, LS2 8JP
HausBar - Bristol
You have to be a committed drinker to drag yourself here because it’s quite a trek from the centre of town, but trust us, this place is worth the effort. Knock and you shall be received, but only if you fit in with the vibe and the bartender's not mid-drink. This is a dimly lit, sultry den of cocktail perfection, and the kind of place that swallows up time.
52 Upper Belgrave Road, Bristol, BS8 2SP
Barts - London
This is one of our favourite hangouts hidden in a seedy looking block of flats in the heart of Chelsea. Find the wallpapered entrance and beg entry when the peephole slides open (best stick the hot chicks at the front). It’s packed with fancy dress, impeccable cocktails and people having a little bit too much fun on a school night.
Chelsea Cloisters, London, SW3 3DW
Bramble - Edinburgh
Even BarChick was made to feel a little stupid in her quest to find this place, it’s the true definition oing of speakeasy. Look out for Astroturf, lights coming from a basement and the sound of music. It’s proper cool down here and the drinks are a labour of love.
16a Queen Street, Edinburgh, EH2 1JE
El Bandito - Liverpool
Not your typical joint but exactly what BarChick wants in a bar. Ask the bouncers in Santo Chupitos and they’ll nudge you in the right direction and down the spiral stairs. You’re here to drink… tequila. Ditch the lime and salt (these guys are too good for that) and see it out until closing (that’s 5am btw).
41b Slater Street, Liverpool, L1 4BX
Berry & Rye - Liverpool
The only clue for this spot is the hench doorman standing outside, so spot him and beg entry. There’s a Prohibition / bootlegger vibe and deep booths to sink into. You’ll find the cocktail menu hidden in books and a musician keeping everyone’s toes a-tappin’.
48 Berry Street, Liverpool, L1 4JQ
ECC - London
If you’re hanging out in Chinatown, look out for the shabby chic black door with a dash of red paint but only if you’re looking hot - these guys are French and won’t tolerate anything but the best. The vibe is laid back Parisian cool and the cocktara eils exquisite and unusual.
13a Gerrard Street, London, W1D 5PS
Secret Arcade - Edinburgh
This place lives up to its name, it’s so secret you can’t find it. Hidden off the famous Royal Mile, even once you spot the door, the steep and uninviting stairs will keep you guessing right up until the last moment. You’ll find a small bar, low lighting and lots of seating and wonder what kind of naughtiness is in store…
48 Cockburn Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1PB
The Jekyll & Hyde - Birmingham
Downstairs is a pretty perfect Birmingham boozer, but it’s upstairs where the magic happens. Hidden above the pub is the Dr Jekyll Gin Parlour, where the gin oracles (aka the hot chicks) take people on tasting tours of the 80 different gins on offer. If gin’s not your thing th's its back downstiirs and to the cask ales.
28 Steelhouse Lane, Birmingham, B4 6BJ
This hidden away Prohibition bar plays by the book and doesn’t stock booze, that’s up to you to sort. Bring a bottle, any bottle and hand it over to the bartender so he can work his magic. These guys will make you happy and tipsy in your two hour session.
41 Meeting House Lane, The Lanes, Brighton, BN1 4RB
Cane & Grain - Manchester
Cane & Grain boasts three floors o, fun filled with ribs, bourbon, beer and some super strong cocktails. Wondering where people keep disappearing to? There is a hot as hell bar upstairs home to bad-ass blocks of ice and slick cocktails, but if you really want to party - it’s up to the top floor for tiki-tastic good times.
49-51 Thomas Street, Manchester, M4 1NA