Basement bars have a strange habit of being full of people who look as if they would crumble to dust if they encountered daylight. Freud's, in a mildewed cellar on the way down to Covent Garden, is a bit threatening when you first go in, as you expect to be bitten at any moment. But the staff are friendly and the dudes clinging to its walls will make few uninvited incursions into your life, although they might stare at you a bit if you're not wearing a hat. The loos, up some shiny stone steps, through a black iron door and tucked under a staircase, have an ambience all of their own: not dirty, just unique.

Freud's, 198 Shaftesbury

Ave, WC2

(Photograph omitted)

Tomorrow: Sheeky's WC2

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