28 Superb Soho Bars For A Really Stylish Night Out
Arguably the beating heart of Central London, Soho boasts a legendary reputation, some fantastic restaurants and a whole host of celebrity admirers. For the best places to drink in style, we’ve put together a little guide to the best Soho bars, to get you in the know. Oh, and for definition’s sake, all these Soho bars fall within the area bounded by Oxford Street, Regent’s Street, Shaftesbury Avenue, and Charing Cross Road. Cheers!
Named after the famed London boxer and promoter, and situated on the site of his old gym, Jack Solomon’s is quite the hit. A punchy cocktail list is the star attraction, with drinks like On The Ropes and *ahem* Lovely Fanny catching the eye. Find out more here.
41 Great Windmill Street, W1D 7NB.
Once the site of notorious celebrity watering hole, The Pinstripe Club, this bar has had a fancy facelift without sacrificing its character. In lieu of ingredients, the cocktail menu weaves literary tales about each libation, and membership options are available if you really love it. Find out more here.
4 Kingly Street, W1B 5PW.
3. Garlic & Shots
There’s one unique, and potentially hugely offputting, USP at Garlic & Shots. Everything on the menu at this cocktail bar in Soho – and we do mean everything – has garlic involved in some way. Beers, cocktails, coffee, and even a handful of their 101 shots features the stuff. Don’t bring your vampire pals to this dive bar… You can find out more here.
14 Frith Street, W1D 4RD
For neon-lit, Shanghai noir vibes, head down to the basement of bao bakery Bun House to find the Wun’s Tea Room & Bar. A restaurant/cocktail bar hybrid in Chinatown, the drinks are heavily influenced by China, resulting in excellent creations such as Peanut & Goji Berry and the Mint & Sichuan Sour. Find out more here.
23 Greek Street, W1D 4DZ.
5. The Blind Pig
Tucked away above Michelin star-winning restaurant Social Eating House is the cosy, low-lit Blind Pig. From a regularly-rotating cocktail menu – you’ll be able to find some utterly charming creations. They’re currently named after singers and music icons – tempting offers include The Era of Blues: Muddy Waters and A British Institution: Oasis. Find out more here.
58 Poland Street, W1F 7NR.
6. The Pink Chihuahua
A delightfully kitschy Mexican dive bar, The Pink Chihuahua does pretty much everything except take itself seriously. Their cocktails include margaritas, mezcal negronis and nuclear daiquiris – sign us up! Discover more here.
25-27 Brewer Street, W1F 0RR.
7. The Vault
If you’re a fan of bars with secret entrances, you’re going to love this one. The Vault is hidden behind a bookcase in whisky trader Milroys, and the prize for getting in is a comfy speakeasy with a quite frankly spiffing cocktail menu. Find out more here.
3 Greek Street, W1D 4NX.
Choosing between cocktails and desserts is a thing of the past at the sweetest of Soho bars, where you can pair your drinks to a decadent dessert. It’s a place where a banoffee pie might come with a bourbon and honey concoction, and diets don’t exist. Intrigued?
9. Six Storeys
Another strong contender for being one of the best bars in Soho here. If you’ve got the money, you can hire out all six storeys and drink on each of them. For the cash-strapped amongst us, The Lobby Bar will have to suffice, with a huge range of Martinis and Old Fashioneds to keep you happy.
11 Soho Square, W1D 3QE.
10. Bar Termini
Inspired by Rome’s Termini rail station, this bar will get you living la dolce vita, particularly if you dive into their exceptional negronis. Mind you, we wouldn’t turn down a Death in Venice if you offered us one…
7 Old Compton Street, W1D 5JE.
Forget all that stiff upper-lip piffle and head to Cahoots for a jolly old knees-up! A Blitz-themed bar where the clocks stopped in 1946, you can sip on a Vera Lynn inside their vintage Bakerloo carriage.
Kingly Court, 13 Kingly Street, W1B 5PG.
12. Ziggy’s Cocktail Bar
What’s better than a David Bowie-themed cocktail bar? A David Bowie-themed cocktail bar in one of the artist’s favourite haunts, on the very spot where he threw Ziggy Stardust’s retirement bash in 1973, and featuring cocktails including ‘Electric Dream’ and ‘Tiger On Vaseline’, that’s what. You can find out more here.
Hotel Café Royal, 68 Regent Street, W1B 4DY.
Another upstairs-downstairs affair amongst our cadre of Soho bars. Upstairs is light and airy, with a focus on clear and refined spirits, whilst downstairs is low-lit and wood panelled, with rum and whisky cocktails populating the menu. Head along, Swiftly. You can find out more here.
12 Old Compton Street, W1D 4TQ.
14. Barrio Soho
Yes this next addition to this Soho bars roundup is part of a chain, but we aren’t going to hold that against them. Particularly when the bar is colourful, bustling, and serving tropical-inspired cocktails to us. They also have regular bottomless brunches here too – win, win! Check them out here.
6 Poland Street, W1F 8PS.
15. The London Gin Club
When it comes to deciding on a poison of choice, the clue’s in the name. Mother’s Ruin finds a spiritual home here on Great Chapel Street, with more than 350 varieties of the stuff tucked away behind the bar. With a compact food menu and regular tasting events, prepare yourself for a ginsane night out here.
The Star, 22 Great Chapel Street, W1F 8FR.
16. Simmons Soho
Again, they’re all over town, but cocktails are two for £10 during their ludicrous five-hour happy hour, so you won’t hear us complaining. Fans of neon, dodgy wallpaper, and skull-shaped disco balls are going to love it.
2 Bateman Street, W1D 4AE.
Rather than stumbling from the bar to your late-night food stop, you can stay at the bar and still refuel. Balans Soho Society serves food until 6am, so all your post-sesh needs are in-house. Except for a bed, of course.
18. Aqua Kyoto
At the pricier end of the Soho bars spectrum, we find Aqua Kyoto. You’re probably paying for the location, to be honest, since the rooftop terrace overlooks Regent Street – grab a drink and settle in for the sunset.
240 Regent Street, W1B 3BR.
19. Freedom Bar
A spiffy-looking place with a club on site, Freedom Bar is a place where the evening slips into the early hours of the morning all too easily. Careful on the dance poles downstairs if you’ve had a few drinks… Find out more here.
66 Wardour Street, W1F 0TA.
20. Bar Americain
Not to be confused with The Savoy’s American Bar, this one can be found inside Brasserie Zedel, the haven of Francophiles. Despite the French influence, this bar lives up to its name, with Art Deco interiors and Yankee inflections in the cocktails. Cheers! You can find out more here.
20 Sherwood Street, W1F 7ED.
21. Archer Street
Whilst the year-round cocktail bar is charming, Archer Street’s trump card is a seasonal bar, which alternates between all-singing alpine ski lodge Piste in winter, and Barbadian beach shack come summer. A bar for all seasons, really. Check it out here.
3-4 Archer Street, W1D 7AP.
22. Gerry’s Club
You’ll need friends in high places or a nice disposable income to get in here, because like many Soho bars, this one is members only. However, if you do get inside, you’ve got a good chance of making some famous friends – it’s a notorious hangout for creative types. Find out more here.
52 Dean Street, W1D 5BJ.
23. The Arts Theatre Club
They claim to be “Soho’s best kept secret”. We say “not anymore!” A Prohibition-style bar where you can order cocktails in teapots, this spot once hosted the Krays, amongst others. Luckily there’s no chance of running into them, but you’re advised to book in advance.
50 Frith Street, W1D 4SQ.
Part-restaurant, part-tequila bar, La Bodega Negra is based in an old sex shop, there’s a long old cocktail list offers multiple margaritas (hibiscus and jalapeno riffs on the classic are particularly intriguing), agave concoctions and other recipes inspired by Latin America. Behind the bar there are no fewer than 40 tequilas and 15 mezcals, including the luxurious Tapatio Excelencia Gran Reserva at £37 a measure – not one to knock back with a lick of salt and mouthful of lemon then.
16 Moor Street, London, W1D 5AP.
Right in the heart of Soho lies Zebrano – one of the best bars on Greek Street – and a bar that literally does it all. Food, drinks, comedy, cabaret and drag – the list really is endless. So see what all the fuss is about and make sure you head there!
18 Greek Street, London, W1D 4DS.
One of London’s best kept secrets, The Piano Bar is a place of well sought after sanctuary, just a tiny stroll away from the manic bustle of Oxford Street in Soho. Walk through the inconspicuous doorway into the candlelit piano bar with live music, sip on a tipple and listen to some live jazz. The intimate ambience of this secret bar makes it the perfect spot for a cosy date night, or a super fancy mate night.
16 Carlisle Street, London, W1D 3BT.
Next up on this roundup of Soho bars is Opium – a 1920’s Shanghai-inspired bar-come-dim-sum-parlour which is smack-bang in the middle of Chinatown. Featured in the ‘Top 50 Cocktail Bars’, it’s divided into three different sections, including their secret cocktail bar ‘Peony’, where they serve everything from a coconut negroni to Let’s Go Bananas – a heady and fruity mix of bourbon, vermouth, banana, absinthe, bitters and chai spice. Discover more here.
15-16 Gerrard Street, London, W1D 6JE.
Rounding off this list of the best Soho bars is SOMA – a basement speakeasy that bills itself as ‘in search of the divine’. Open until 3am art weekends, it’s brought to you from the team behind the Indian restaurant Kricket, and they’ve got everything here from Old Fashioned’s to Banana Dacquiris – sign us up! You can find out more here.
14 Denman Street, London, W1D 7H.
So there you have it – a roundup of 28 of the best Soho bars. So if you’re out on a date or are just looking to meet up with some mates, then we hope we’ve got you covered!
Also published on Medium.