Originally Published: October 7, 2014

London is bursting with an array of delicious cocktail bars. Head to the capital and you can find everything from basement hideaways and stunning rooftops scenes to hip hangouts and vintage venues. But you might not know that the city is also home to a number of weird and wonderful cocktails bars. If you’re looking to try something a little bit different next time you’re in London, then make sure that you follow Eating London’s handy guide to its quirkiest cocktail bars – we’re certain that you won’t regret it!

Portside Parlour, London

Portside Parlour

14 Rivington Street, Shoreditch, London EC2A 3DU

Nestled in Shoreditch, the Portside Parlour is definitely one of London’s most unusual cocktails bars! Take a wander down the Portside Parlour’s rickety wooden stairs and you’ll be lead straight to an old public toilet, but don’t fear – you’re in the right place! Just pull the chain and voila, you’ll be greeted by charmingly candlelight basement bar full of eclectic furnishings, vintage decor and an impressive cocktail menu. Take your pick from the Portside Parlours selection of over 50 rums or their daringly different cocktails including the Umami Martini, Auto Pilot and Lawnmower Sling. What’s not to love? Let’s just say it’s not every day that you end up drinking from a toilet…

Callooh Callay

65 Rivington Street, London EC2A 3AY

Found in the heart of Shoreditch, Callooh Callay has to be one of the most mesmerising cocktail bars in London. From its Alice in Wonderland inspired decor and quaint trinkets to the mismatched furniture and an additional lounge found through a wardrobe door, Callooh Callay is the coolest place to spend your Saturday night. Why not book a table and indulge in of their quirky cocktails? Choose from Nettle Down, Storm in a Thai Cup, Respect Your Elders or one of their other delicious concoctions. Also, if you’re feeling peckish before the night is through, you’re in luck because Callooh Callay has a delicious menu of bar snacks that are hard to resist…

Trapeze, London

Trapeze

89 Great Eastern Street, London EC2A 3HX

If you’re looking for something a little bit different, then Trapeze is the cocktail bar for you. Inspired by Hoxton’s very own National Centre for Circus Arts, this venue just oozes quirkiness from the hanging trapeze bars to the carousel booths! But the circus glamour doesn’t end with its quirky interior, Trapeze also has an array of incredible themed cocktails including the Beer-ded Lady, Snake Charmer and Wall (Banger) of Death. Getting late but don’t want the fun to stop yet? Then head downstairs to Trapeze’s Basement Club, where you can boogie the night away to the sounds of the Resident DJ…

Evans and Peel Cocktail Club

310c Earls Court Road, London SW5 9BA

To gain access to this shadowy venue, you’ll need to ring the doorbell and when you’re sure that you’re not being watched slip inside to present your case to the illustrious Detective Peel –remember the more dramatic your story, the better! After stepping through the bookcase to this mysterious ‘Detective Agency’, you won’t be disappointed. The Evan’s and Peel Cocktail Club is bursting with 1920’s charm, a sultry candlelit interior and the delightful sounds of gramophone music. But the Evan’s and Peel Cocktail Club’s showstopper is definitely its selection of exotically dazzling cocktails, including the incredible Deep Indigo. Finally, a little word of advice from us – book you’re appointment at Evan’s and Peel well in advance to make sure that you don’t miss out on any of the fun…

B.Y.O.C, London

B.Y.O.C

28 Bedfordbury, Covent Garden, London WC2N 4BJ

If we told you that there’s a cocktail bar in London that doesn’t sell alcohol, you’d think that we were trying to twist your leg but it’s true! Hidden behind a secret door in The Juice Club, Bring Your Own Cocktail doesn’t have a drop of alcohol available to purchase or a single cocktail menu in sight. Instead, guests are invited to bring along their choice of spirit and allow B.Y.O.C’s talented mixologists to create you a delicious tipple, exactly how you like it! But believe us, this won’t be just any old cocktail. Your drink will be tailored using a selection of ingredients including syrups, fruit juices, cordials, bitters, spices, herbs, salts and much more. What’s better yet? At just £20 for a 2 hour reservation, you’ll be coming back to B.Y.O.C again and again…

So next time you’re in London and fancy trying something a little bit quirky, make sure that you head to one of these weird and wonderful cocktail bars. As always, remember to let us know your favourites!

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