If jazz is the music of musicians then this basement den is London’s iniquitous haunt.
Hiding out in the historic bosom of Greenwich, confidently holding its own amongst the sailors, Oliver’s is an established underground scene, purveying music in a hood that's known for jazz since 2004. There's no door policy, the only thing greeting you at the open door is the sound of minstrels warming up for the late session. Kinda cool.
Focus is on style, instruments and musicians; drinks oil the cogs of this jazz machine - not the other way around. Jazz doesn’t take directions, or play by the rules, so give yourself up to Oliver’s. With a humbly stocked sailor’s bar, we ordered Myers’s Rum and ginger beer with fresh lime, double… obvs.
Sit at small tables with token red candles and watch the wax burn in this rough and ready time warp. It feels like a scene from the Sopranos, and it’s practically impossible to prevent yourself from looking over your wing man’s shoulder to check out the rest of the authentic clientele. Take a midnight companion or enthusiast and give up any hope of getting north of the river by sunrise. Expect a night as spontaneous as the jazz itself.