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Joyeux Bordel. Photo: Addie Chinn

Joyeux Bordel. Photo: Addie Chinn

Address 147 Curtain Road (basement); London EC2A 3QE
by Old Street
Neighbourhood Shoreditch | See on map
Tube Old Street [Northern]
Telephone Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. before 17:00 for reservations.
Website http://joyeuxbordel.com
Hours Mon-Wed 18-02. Thurs-Sat 18-03. Sun 18-24.

You can’t be much of a cocktail drinker if you haven’t heard of the Experimental Cocktail Group. Their chi-chi booze dens more or less single-handedly got Paris hooked on mixology and they’ve also taken London by storm. Having already planted their flag in Chinatown and Covent Garden, Joyeux Bordel is their first outpost East.

The location, however, is the only thing that’s Shoreditch hipster-ish. An unmarked basement venue that’s candlelit and decorated with vintage mirrors, floor rugs and low seating inside, the atmosphere remains très Parisian speakeasy, très bobo chic. The same goes for the door policy; you’re well advised to make a reservation instead of trying your luck with the très moody doorman.

With a capacity for 100-130 warm bodies and a funky soundtrack of afro, soul and disco, the vibe is upbeat but don’t expect a crazily wild night out – joyeux bordel translates into ‘jolly mess’, not ‘hammered and dancing on the tables’. More specifically, get jolly with the short menu of cocktails – good but pricey – and messy with the small plates of charcuterie, rillette and cheese goodness.