Places are often described as hidden gems, and this gem is about as hidden as they come. In the best tradition of gangster flicks, B.Y.O.C is accessed through the back of a more obvious storefront, in this case the Bedfordbury Street Juice Club. But what is this clandestine operation all about? Well, B.Y.O.C stands for Bring Your Own Cocktail, but that doesn’t mean you need a pre-mixed Singapore Sling to get in – just a base spirit to give the barman something to work with. The cocktail club at the bottom of some secret stairs doesn’t sell any booze of its own, but it does have all the other ingredients you’d need to make a top-notch cocktail, wheeled around on a vintage Italian trolley by the mixologist.
In fact the whole theme of B.Y.O.C is vintage, from the gramophone to the 1920s signs, and the atmosphere is as discreet as the mode of entrance thanks to a generally underlit space pierced with golden highlights such as the exposed brick and fireplace. With its impressive sense of old-time style, B.Y.O.C is set to be the worst kept secret in London.