Remember the 1940s? Ok, many of you may not but some of you will; but no doubt many of you will have seen the images and heard the stories of air raid shelters and London’s tube stations being used to house thousands of people during air raids. And how our interior designers love the décor from that era – it’s vintage now, you know! But I digress; find your way to famous Carnaby Street in Soho, London and you will find a new cocktail bar that will transport you back in time to this vintage era, and you will just love it!
Cahoots opened this week and it is based in an old, abandoned air raid shelter from World War Two. But that’s not all; the whole bar has been designed as a vintage Underground station including old tube carriage seating, sandbags, a wooden staircase resembling the old wooden escalators, classic 1940s signs, dimly-lit cosy air raid bunker seating booth – you can almost imagine Dick Tracy lurking in the shadows!
The venue is no stranger to history either; formerly Tatty Bogle, an out-of-hours drinking club that was first opened by a group of Scottish officers in 1917, the site was also used as a bomb shelter – take a look at the wartime membership book and you’ll see famous names such as Buster Crabbe, Burgess, Anthony Blunt and Maclean. And to bring even more authenticity to the surroundings, there are a plethora of furnishings and knick-knacks similar to those people using the shelters would bring with them from home during air raids, leather from the period, 1940s-style singers and musicians, right down to being greeted and served by staff wearing authentic uniforms and clothing from the era.
Ok, I know, you’re not allowed to drink alcohol on the tube, but I think you might like to make an exception when you visit Cahoots – the list of themed, quirky, delicious cocktails are worth it! There is a list of cocktails that reaches eight pages in length – take your time in reading the varieties, but we loved the sound of Dig for Victory, Gives Peas a Chance (no, it isn’t a spelling mistake!) and the Tanqueray No. TEN Station Clock cocktail which is, funnily enough, served in a 1940s style clock complete with working face and serves eight people – I dare you to give it a go!