Sneaking sips in Paris, Amsterdam, Melbourne, LA, NYC
Sunday 06 June 2010
Around the world it is legal to drink after a certain age but for some reason prohibition-era spots are popping up. Perhaps something sexy about a bygone era's speakeasies or the idea of being ‘in the know', in a hard to find spot with your jack in a coffee mug.
Either way the trend is to learn the special knock and find a world of possibilities on the other side of a back alley bar. Think of it as a tribute to those bucking prohibition 90 years ago.
Here is a list of speakeasies that may or may not be relevant by the time you arrive:
Prescription Cocktail Club ( 23 rue Mazarine, 75006) is unmarked and once you make it past the doorman, the speakeasy is filled with hip Parisians sipping their renowned Florida Tarragon (tarragon-infused vodka, house-made passion fruit syrup). http://www.prescriptioncocktailclub.com
Door 74 ( Reguliersdwarsstraat 74) can be found amongst a number of unmarked doors, you will have to find the correct buzzer to ring and once inside you will find a witty menu that reads "Life has to have some rules, otherwise you might as well go and live in France" along with cocktails like "The Fourth Regiment" (bourbon, sweet vermouth with celery, orange and aromatic bitters). http://www.door74.nl
Der Raum, (438 Church Street, Richmond) run by artist Matthew Bax underground bar celebrates old Berlin with handmade fresh juice cocktails and drinks - no syrups. Reservations are required. http://www.derraum.com.au
The Back Room (102 Norfolk - LES) at first glance looks like the Lower East Side Toy Company, but the unmarked speakeasy behind the alley and chains opens into a 1920's themed bar complete with red velvet walls and chandeliers. In the event a raid should take place, all the drinks are served in various coffee cups (espresso for shots, tea for wine, mugs for cocktails) and beer in paper bags.
PDT, aka Please Don't Tell, (13 St. Mark's Place) is inside Crif Dogs (street sign reads ‘Eat Me') behind a door left of a pay phone. Known for its innovative drinks and difficulty for finding a spot once you actually find the spot. http://www.pdtnyc.com
Raines Law Room (48 W. 17th, Chelsea) has an elegant living room circa 1800s feel. It is much easier to find but there is no bar and the atmosphere is very civilized. To get a drink you have a push a button and a server will appear. To keep the intimate feel, you may have leave your mobile number and get a ring back when space has opened for your and your friends. http://www.raineslawroom.com
Cienfuegos (95 Avenue A) is the latest (opened April 26) addition to New York City's speakeasies with a rum social club to find it, you will first have to go in a sandwich place, continue up stairs to the elegant Havana-inspired pastel colored club. http://cienfuegosny.com
The Prohibition Speakeasy Wine Bar (340 Healdsburg Avenue) takes place behind a ‘fake' wine storefront where a non-transparent glass shelters the secret bar. To get in, you will need to dial W-I-N-E from the phone in an old phone booth inside the shop. http://www.speakeasywineclub.com
The ultimate ‘in the know' spot to be is the pop-up bar The Pharmacie. It harkens back to old Hollywood with "invite-only" cocktail parties. Sorry to unless you know somebody that knows something, it is impossible to find where the next one will be.
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