It’s Friday 5.00pm on the dot and London’s workers spill out onto the streets, speeding along the pavement to their respective destinations.
Last Friday mine was to the absolutely spiffing abode of Phileas J Fogg Esq. I met K outside Green Park station and we slunk round the back streets to the unassuming Bruton Lane off of Berkley Sq – unassuming being the operative word as it took us three attempts to locate this little watering hole. But it was all worth it.
We were greeted by an ever so charming doorman who rang a bell inside to get us a table. Once your table is ready the heavy oak door is opened and the Maitre D’ swafts you past the velvet curtain, taking you back in time to the Victorian age. The walls are filled with hanging pictures, paintings, taxidermy, busts and books; whilst penny farthings, bird cages and the bottom of a hot air balloon line the ceiling.
Menu’s were promptly handed to us, water and peanuts were placed on our table and we were left to ponder the menu. Now, that is good service when you don’t even have to ask for water!
The cocktail menus length can challenge that of War and Peace, starting you off with a set of ‘Rules of the Household’ to get you into the theme, if the interior hasn’t already. Then quickly followed by an abundance of cocktails, all listed under their base spirits, each with their own accompanying stories of where they were acquired on Mr Fogg’s travels.
Our waitress for the evening was the lovely ‘Tiny’, she was a fountain of knowledge on the cocktails and ready as soon as we were to order, without being too pushy.
I went for a delightful concoction called ‘the Henrietta’ and K for the ‘Spicy Rupee’. Now they aren’t the most purse-friendly cocktails in the world, but by golly they are good! – I may even go as far to say the best I have had and little wonder Mr Fogg’s has won Food and Travel awards ‘Best Bar of the Year’.
The atmosphere is fantastic and even though you are nestled quite closely to your neighbours, you still feel you are in your own little bubble.
Once we’d settled up, we had to have a snoop of the toilets and were so glad we did. These were equally themed as the bar, plastered with paraphernalia and playing a soundtrack of Jules Verne’s ‘around the world in 80 days’.
It was all smashing and I cannot wait to go back. Having looked into it all a little further, Tipsy Tea looks to be the perfect excuse for another visit… or three.
To make a reservation and find out a little more about the mysterious Mr Fogg click here.