new boozer in London doesn’t even have a liquor licence.
February, Londoners have been clamouring to get a reservation at BYOC, a tiny 18-seat bar hidden in the
basement of a Covent Garden juice bar. But lest you think London was turning
into a teetotalling crowd, take heart. BYOC stands for bring your own cocktail.
You bring the hooch and the mixologist supplies the magic.
So pick up your
favourite spirit or dust off that bottle of sherry and head to the Juice Club on Bedfordbury Street. Once
inside, the hostess ushers you behind a hidden door and down a narrow stairway
that leads to a candlelit brick basement, roughly the size of a Tube carriage. Music
by Ella Fitzgerald may be playing on the gramophone and the mixologist will
wheel over his vintage Italian cart stocked with fresh juices, homemade syrups,
bitters and herbs to whip up a custom cocktail based on your flavour preferences.
You can get
a pitcher for the whole table or order individual drinks if you want to try a
few different combinations. Each seating lasts two hours and costs £20 per
be served anywhere from three to six times during your seating – although you
may want to stick closer to three cocktails or less if you want to get back up
those winding stairs in one piece.
booking online, or follow @BYOClondon for last-minute