Around the world in 80 days? Phewf, sounds exhausting. How about around the Battersea Park roundabout and straight into Phileas' travel-inspired gin parlour, Mr Foggs? Mysteriously hidden away down the back streets of flashy Mayfair, the bare, dull-hued exterior of Mr. Fogg's is, at first glance, a tad underwhelming to say the least. But, stepping through the door of this enigmatic little hidey-hole is akin to stepping into the life of a fine English gent. Elegantly eccentric in both décor and drinks selection, Mr. Fogg's Residence is bathed in wonderfully ostentatious round-the-world keepsakes and decadent interior that simply screams quintessential Victorian England; it's not hard to see why Mr. Fogg's is such a huge hit with Mayfair's finest clientele.
Cloaked in a subtle air of mystery and providing the perfect setting for an intimate evening gathering, Mr. Fogg's' marvellously mismatched furnishings are beautifully in keeping with the fanciful travel theme. Rich mahogany, velvet upholstery and draped doorways all work alongside one another to create an effervescent experience for each and every visitor. Atmospherically dimly lit and pleasantly decked out in vivacious relics, entering Mr. Fogg's is a transportation back in time. Newspaper cuttings, wonderfully weird antiques and an array of shabby chic flags adorn the walls, leaving not a single corner devoid of charming clutter. Of course, it couldn't possibly be the so-called home of fictional travel-bug Phileas Fogg without his trusty hot air balloon, which takes pride of place in the living space.
Music: Ambient, Live
Dress Code: Smart/Casual
Train Station: Green Park
Address: Mr Fogg's Residence, 15 Bruton Lane, London, W1J 6JD
Ok, so it definitely isn't cheap to get utterly gazeboed at Mr. Fogg's - although it's Mayfair, so are you really that surprised? A crazy sounding, porcini mushroom infused gin creation will set you back a cool sixteen smackers but, boy-oh-boy, is it worth it! The best-dressed bartenders in town expertly handcraft every cocktail, and each creation has its very own serving vessel. And with more gins on offer than you probably knew existed, Mr. Fogg's cocktail book – that's book, not menu – is a real sight to behold. Creative concoctions wonderfully blended with a tasty array of homemade purees and syrups are beautifully accompanied by low-key instrumental tunes, making this a well-groomed parlour to enjoy an elegant evening with the added offer of something out of the ordinary.
Swamped by posh party-goers and a selection of Mayfair's elite, naturally, it's suits all round at Mr. Fogg's. You probably won't see any bulk-buying of tequila slammers, nor witness any raunchy table-top dancing, because this is the sort of place frequented by those looking for a civilised catch up over cocktails; a refined rendezvous, if you will. Unsurprisingly, the cosy nature of Mr. Fogg's means it can get a little crowded on a Friday night but Fogg's' delightful botanical garden offers a tad more space for the over-spill. Aside from the city's suited and booted, Mr. Fogg's weekend Tipsy Tea also sees the arrival of curious tourists looking to sample the delights of a traditional afternoon tea with an alcoholic twist. Simply put, it's the perfect excuse to catch up with old friends while simultaneously getting slightly sloshed. Well, you know what they say – two birds, one stone.
Cocktails, class, and culture – an evening with Mr. Fogg is guaranteed to give any weekly sesh that much-needed touch of sophistication. Well-behaved and impeccably attentive, the fittingly named 'servants' of Fogg's - or staff to the modern day world - are always on hand to offer cocktail guidance or even just a simple conversation on a quieter eve. They say that what initially drives you to a person, will be what ends up driving you mad about them. Like being attracted to a musician, but then getting driven crazy by them tapping on everything and whipping their guitar out at every opportunity. Well Mr Fogg's is quite the opposite. What we will now admit was a very wrong preconception (stuffy and pretentious looking) is actually exactly why we love it, now feeling intricate and charming. Mr Foggs is your very own adventure novel, so don't miss the boat on this one. Or rather, the hot air-balloon.