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Best Cocktail Bars in Mayfair: Our Top Picks

July 24, 2023

Mayfair, one of London's most luxurious neighbourhoods, is home to some of the city's best cocktail bars. With a rich history of cocktail culture, Mayfair has attracted cocktail enthusiasts from all over the world. From swanky hotels to hidden speakeasies, the area has a diverse range of bars to suit everyone's taste.

Mayfair's cocktail culture dates back to the early 20th century, where American bars became legendary in London and Paris during the roaring 1920s. Today, Mayfair's cocktail scene is still thriving, with both classic and modern bars serving up innovative and creative cocktails. Whether you're looking for a sophisticated atmosphere or a lively party vibe, Mayfair has a bar for every occasion.

Key Takeaways

  • Mayfair has a rich history of cocktail culture dating back to the early 20th century.
  • Mayfair's cocktail scene is diverse, with both classic and modern bars serving up innovative and creative cocktails.
  • Whether you're looking for a sophisticated atmosphere or a lively party vibe, Mayfair has a bar for every occasion.

Historical Context of Mayfair's Cocktail Culture

Mayfair has a long-standing reputation as a hub for high-end drinking establishments, with a cocktail culture that dates back to the early 20th century. During this time, prohibition was in full swing in the United States, leading to a surge in demand for speakeasies and hidden bars in London. Mayfair became a hotspot for these illicit drinking dens, attracting an exclusive clientele of wealthy socialites and celebrities.

The cocktail culture in Mayfair continued to thrive throughout the 1920s and 1930s, with iconic bars such as Dukes Bar and The American Bar at The Savoy Hotel cementing their place in London's drinking scene. These bars were known for their classic cocktails, such as the Martini and the Manhattan, which were served with a level of sophistication and elegance that was unparalleled at the time.

In the post-war years, Mayfair's cocktail culture underwent a shift towards more experimental and creative drinks. This was partly due to the influx of American servicemen, who brought with them a taste for cocktails such as the Bloody Mary and the Margarita. Bars such as The Ritz and The Connaught Hotel embraced this trend, offering innovative and exciting cocktails that pushed the boundaries of traditional mixology.

Today, Mayfair's cocktail culture continues to evolve, with a new generation of mixologists and bartenders pushing the boundaries of what is possible with a cocktail. From the theatrical and flamboyant drinks at CircusXO Bar to the classic elegance of The American Bar, Mayfair's cocktail bars offer something for every taste and preference. Whether you are looking for a classic Martini or an innovative and experimental cocktail, Mayfair is the place to be for the ultimate drinking experience.

Top Rated Cocktail Bars in Mayfair

Mayfair is home to some of the best cocktail bars in London, offering a luxurious and sophisticated drinking experience. Here are the top-rated cocktail bars in Mayfair that you should definitely check out.

Connaught Bar

Located in the prestigious Connaught Hotel, the Connaught Bar is a world-class cocktail bar that offers a luxurious and elegant atmosphere. The bar is known for its innovative and creative cocktails, which are expertly crafted by some of the best mixologists in the city. The Connaught Bar also boasts an impressive selection of rare and vintage spirits, making it a must-visit for any cocktail aficionado.

Claridge's Bar

Claridge's Bar, located in the iconic Claridge's Hotel, is a sleek and stylish cocktail bar that offers a sophisticated and intimate atmosphere. Designed by David Collins, the bar is known for its extensive cocktail menu, which features classic and contemporary cocktails, as well as a selection of rare and vintage spirits. The bar also offers a range of small plates and bar snacks, making it the perfect spot for a pre-dinner drink or a late-night cocktail.

The American Bar at The Stafford London

The American Bar at The Stafford London is a classic cocktail bar that offers a warm and welcoming atmosphere. The bar is known for its extensive cocktail menu, which features classic and contemporary cocktails, as well as a range of rare and vintage spirits. The bar also boasts a collection of over 3,000 whiskies, making it a must-visit for any whisky lover.

Cartizze Bar

Cartizze Bar is a luxurious and elegant cocktail bar that offers a refined and sophisticated atmosphere. The bar is known for its expertly crafted cocktails, which are made using only the finest ingredients. The bar also offers a range of small plates and bar snacks, making it the perfect spot for a quick bite or a leisurely meal.

In conclusion, Mayfair is home to some of the best cocktail bars in London, offering a luxurious and sophisticated drinking experience. Whether you're looking for classic cocktails or innovative creations, these top-rated cocktail bars in Mayfair are sure to impress.

Emerging Cocktail Bars in Mayfair

Mayfair is home to some of the most renowned cocktail bars in London, but there are also some newer and lesser-known establishments that are worth checking out.

The Luggage Room

Tucked away in the basement of the Marriott Hotel on Grosvenor Square, The Luggage Room is a speakeasy-style bar that exudes vintage glamour. The bartenders here are true experts in their craft, and the cocktail menu is constantly evolving. The bar also offers a private room for events and tastings.

Some standout cocktails from The Luggage Room include:

  • The Luggage Room Martini: made with gin, vermouth, and a choice of olive or lemon twist
  • The Daisy: a refreshing mix of gin, lemon, and raspberry syrup
  • The Old Fashioned: a classic cocktail made with bourbon, sugar, and bitters

Mr Fogg's Residence

Inspired by the fictional explorer Phileas Fogg, Mr Fogg's Residence is a quirky and eccentric cocktail bar located on Bruton Lane. The decor is a mix of Victorian and exotic, with vintage travel memorabilia and taxidermy on display. The cocktail menu is equally adventurous, with drinks inspired by different parts of the world.

Some must-try cocktails from Mr Fogg's Residence include:

  • The Explorer's Club: a smoky and spicy blend of mezcal, ginger, and lime
  • The Passepartout: a fruity and floral concoction made with gin, elderflower, and grapefruit
  • The Julep: a refreshing mix of bourbon, mint, and sugar served over crushed ice

Whether you're a seasoned cocktail aficionado or just looking for a fun night out, The Luggage Room and Mr Fogg's Residence are two emerging bars in Mayfair that are definitely worth a visit.

Signature Cocktails in Mayfair

If you're looking for a unique cocktail experience in Mayfair, you won't be disappointed. Here are two signature cocktails that are a must-try:

Martini at Connaught Bar

The Connaught Bar is renowned for its world-class cocktails, and their Martini is no exception. Made with your choice of gin or vodka and served with a side of olives or a twist of lemon, this classic cocktail is perfectly balanced and expertly crafted. The bartenders at Connaught Bar take pride in their attention to detail, and it shows in every sip.

Claridge's Flapper at Claridge's Bar

Claridge's Bar is known for its elegant atmosphere and sophisticated cocktails, and the Claridge's Flapper is a standout. This cocktail is a nod to the glamour of the 1920s, with a blend of gin, grapefruit, and elderflower liqueur. Served in a vintage glass and garnished with a grapefruit twist, this cocktail is both refreshing and indulgent.

Both of these signature cocktails are a testament to the skill and creativity of the bartenders in Mayfair. Whether you're a cocktail connoisseur or just looking for a memorable drink, these two options are sure to impress.

Mayfair's Cocktail Bar Atmosphere

Mayfair is renowned for its high-end fashion boutiques, luxurious hotels, and Michelin-starred restaurants. But it is also home to some of the most glamorous and sophisticated cocktail bars in the city. These bars not only serve up some of the best cocktails in town but also offer a unique atmosphere that makes them stand out from the rest.

Interior Design

The interior design of Mayfair's cocktail bars is nothing short of spectacular. From the arched ceilings to the gleaming marble floors, the bars are designed to impress. The use of luxurious materials such as velvet, leather, and brass creates a sense of opulence and grandeur. The lighting is carefully curated to create a warm and inviting atmosphere, while the use of mirrors and reflective surfaces adds a touch of glamour.

Music

The music played in Mayfair's cocktail bars is carefully selected to complement the atmosphere. The bars usually have a resident DJ or live music performances that play a mix of jazz, soul, and funk. The music is never too loud, allowing patrons to enjoy their conversations without having to shout over the music.

Ambience

The ambience of Mayfair's cocktail bars is what sets them apart from the rest. The bars are designed to be intimate and cosy, creating a sense of exclusivity and sophistication. The bartenders are knowledgeable and friendly, offering a personalised service to each patron. The dress code is usually smart-casual, adding to the sense of occasion.

In conclusion, Mayfair's cocktail bars offer a unique atmosphere that is unparalleled in the city. The combination of luxurious interior design, carefully curated music, and intimate ambience creates an unforgettable experience for patrons.

Cocktail Making Classes in Mayfair

Mayfair is home to some of the best cocktail bars in London, and it's no surprise that many of them offer cocktail making classes. Whether you're a cocktail enthusiast or a complete beginner, these classes are a great way to learn new skills and have fun with friends. Here are some of the best cocktail making classes in Mayfair:

1. The Donovan Bar at Brown's Hotel

The Donovan Bar at Brown's Hotel offers a cocktail making masterclass that is perfect for those who want to learn how to make classic cocktails like the Martini and the Old Fashioned. Led by the bar's expert mixologists, the class covers the history of cocktails, the art of mixing drinks, and the techniques used to create the perfect cocktail. The class includes a welcome drink, a selection of canapes, and the chance to make your own cocktails.

2. The Connaught Bar

The Connaught Bar is one of the most famous cocktail bars in Mayfair, and its cocktail making classes are equally impressive. Led by the bar's award-winning mixologists, the classes cover everything from the history of cocktails to the art of mixology. You'll learn how to make classic cocktails like the Negroni and the Manhattan, as well as some of the bar's signature drinks. The class includes a welcome drink, a selection of canapes, and the chance to make your own cocktails.

3. The Artesian at The Langham

The Artesian at The Langham is known for its innovative and creative cocktails, and its cocktail making classes are no exception. Led by the bar's expert mixologists, the classes are designed to teach you how to create your own unique cocktails using a range of ingredients and techniques. You'll learn how to use different types of spirits, how to balance flavours, and how to create stunning garnishes. The class includes a welcome drink, a selection of canapes, and the chance to make your own cocktails.

Overall, Mayfair is a great place to learn how to make cocktails, and these classes are a fantastic way to experience some of the best bars in London. Whether you're a seasoned pro or a complete beginner, these classes are sure to teach you something new and help you develop your mixology skills.

Conclusion

Mayfair is home to some of the best cocktail bars in London, each with its unique style, ambiance, and cocktail selection. From classic bars to modern and innovative ones, Mayfair has something for everyone.

Dukes Bar is a must-visit for those who appreciate classic cocktails, while Fitz's Bar is a great choice for those who want to enjoy a drink in a stylish and sophisticated setting. Happiness Forgets is perfect for those who want to try something new and innovative, while Side Hustle at NoMad is a great option for those who want to experience one of the coolest hotel bars in London.

Whether you're a local or a visitor, these bars are sure to impress with their exceptional service, quality drinks, and stylish ambiance. So, if you're looking for a great night out in Mayfair, be sure to check out one of these top cocktail bars.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the top cocktail bars in Mayfair for a date?

Mayfair is home to some of the most exclusive and luxurious cocktail bars in London. For a romantic date, we recommend visiting the intimate and elegant Connaught Bar, which offers a sophisticated atmosphere and expertly crafted cocktails. Another great option is the American Bar at The Savoy, which has a rich history and is known for its classic cocktails.

What are some late night bars in Mayfair worth checking out?

If you're looking for a late night drink in Mayfair, there are plenty of options to choose from. The Arts Club Bar is a popular spot for late night drinks and is open until 3am on weekends. The Novikov Lounge Bar is also a great choice, with a stylish interior and a wide selection of cocktails.

Which bars in Mayfair have live music?

Mayfair is not known for its live music scene, but there are a few bars that offer live entertainment. The Nightjar is a speakeasy-style bar that features live jazz and swing music, while the Quaglino's Bar hosts live music and DJ sets on weekends.

What makes DUKES bar in Mayfair stand out?

DUKES Bar is known for its classic cocktails and elegant atmosphere. The bar is famous for its signature cocktail, the Vesper Martini, which was created by Ian Fleming and featured in his James Bond novels. DUKES Bar also has a knowledgeable and friendly staff who are happy to help you choose the perfect cocktail.

What is the most famous cocktail in London?

The most famous cocktail in London is arguably the Gin and Tonic. This classic drink originated in India during the British colonial period and quickly became popular in London. Today, you can find Gin and Tonics on the menu at almost every bar in the city.

Where can I find the best cocktail bars in London?

London is home to some of the best cocktail bars in the world. Some of our top picks include The Connaught Bar in Mayfair, The American Bar at The Savoy, and The Artesian at The Langham. For a more casual atmosphere, we recommend visiting Nightjar in Shoreditch or Callooh Callay in Hoxton.

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About the Author: 

Hometainment Team

HOMETAINMENT, a company specializing in curating hospitality and entertainment experiences, delivers them directly to your place of choice , be it your Home your office , your shop , etc…. It stands as the premier platform for home and office entertainment, alleviating the stress associated with hosting. Boasting an extensive array of offerings, from private chefs, bartenders, and musicians to masterclasses, well-being activities, and children's entertainment, HOMETAINMENT continually expands its repertoire with new experiences and experts each week. The seasoned HOMEtainers manage every aspect of your event, regardless of its scale, ensuring a seamless and memorable experience.

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