Last weekend saw the opening of Below & Hidden, the secret drinking den and late-night club room in the basement of Bourne & Hollingsworth, the well known bar and restaurant in deepest Clerkenwell.
When I first entered the room – not much larger as the average living room – at last week’s press launch, I was reminded of entering an Arabian tent. It feels cosy and is decorated with wall tapestries in hues of red and there is seating and tables all around the sides. On closer inspection the tapestries have a medieval theme with unicorns and damsels etc., something you might find in a castle. The room is nicely air conditioned, coming in handy as the evening wore on and things were hotting up on the dance floor.
Cocktails come bottled in a nod to 90s West End style club bottle service and will change with monthly themes and the seasons. Cocktail expert Jim Wrigley, whose brain child this is, will be there every night with his able team to explain the thought behind the drinks, what inspired him to create them and the quality ingredients he uses. There will be personal table service, so no need for getting up from your comfy seat and queuing at the bar.
To give you and idea of what to expect, here’s a run down of the cocktails we were served at the party:
Peacock Suite – Lavender and kaffir lime leaves in a light syrup with Rathbone New London Dry Gin and British white wine. Comes with a peacock feather as decoration.
Banktown Special – Venezuelan light rum, fresh lime, raspberry liqueur, honey and freshly made cranberry juice.
Still Life – Polish vodka, light aperitif wine and peach liqueur, fresh lemon, apple and pineapple juices. Comes with a floating marshmallow.
Diamond Days – Agave tequila, Italian and French vermouth, fortified Peruvian wine and house bitters.
Cocktails are £50 for 6.
Some of the cocktails are available served in a giant LEGO figure head, served with fireworks and a bunch of straws, theses cost £25.
Also on offer were the Below & Hidden’s excellent takes on the Old Fashioned and Negroni and various nibbles.
Essential to the clubroom is the in house DJ who really gets the party started and as the evening evolves the music changes and so does the room. The tapestry covered walls reveal their hidden secret – hundreds and thousands of coloured LED lights pulsing to the rhythm of the music – it’s like sitting in a giant never ending firework.
Below & Hidden is geared towards night owls who don’t want the evening to end and want to go somewhere luxurious but fun. If you want a table, you do need to plan ahead though and round up a few friends – they seat 4-6 people, must be booked in advance and come with a £200 minimum spend.
Below & Hidden is open on Fridays and Saturdays, 8pm to 2am.