Cocktails from the cellar: the world's best basement bars

When the city sun shines, a rooftop bar with a landscape view will make your cocktail taste even better than your favourite mixologist intended it to. But when the sun don’t shine and your cocktail needs more concentration, what can you do? Simple. Climb down from the roof and get into the basement.

Next time you're in the cities below, be sure to find a minute to bump shoulders with the locals over some of the finest cellar cocktails the world has to offer. 

New York - Little Branch

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A little walk down a West Village staircase will bring you to the dimly-lit interior of Little Branch. Classic cocktails are chilled with ice chipped off a block by the mixologists and accompanied by live jazz. You can’t get much more New York than that.

Singapore - B28

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If whisky’s your drink, then B28 is your place in Singapore. The luxuriously decorated bar, tucked under a boutique hotel, boasts over 100 single malt Scotch’s complemented by quality spirits from around the world, a list of classic cocktails and a selection of fine cigars.

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Get yourself Down Under and then down some stairs! Tucked away in an alley you’ll find The Baxter Inn… and hundreds of bottles of whisky, the bar’s specialty. With barmen dressed retro and jazz music blaring, you may think the stairs took you back 100 years.

Mexico City - Jules Basement

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Basement bars are cool, but Jules takes cool to a new level. To get into this chic bar in el D.F’s Polanco neighbourhood, you need to walk through industrial kitchen doors and rubber curtains. After that adventurous, choose a creative cocktail or keep it classic. Either is cool or “chido” as the Mexicans say.

London - Zenna

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If you’re tramping through Soho and looking for a spicy concoction to chase away the damp, head to Zenna. Tucked beneath an Indian restaurant, the cocktail menu is inspired by ingredients from the subcontinent. Check out the King of Soho which mixes green cardamom with the eponymous gin.

Paris - Le Silencio

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If you can get past the doorman standing next to the unmarked black door, then you’ll find yourself cautiously descending two flights of stairs into filmmaker David Lynch’s culture club and cocktail bar. And no, it’s not just the decor. You’re now starring in Twin Peaks. 

Cape Town - The Bullion Bar

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The only way you’ll find this hidden bar is to sense the electro beats pumping from below. When the beat starts your foot thumping, get yourself downstairs and join the Cape’s hippest crowd fueled by classic cocktails bouncing to techno.

Hong Kong - 001

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The hardest thing about 001 isn’t the alcohol. By far, it’s finding the place. With no website, no published address and no markings on the door, you need a guide to help you find its illuminated doorbell. But after you buzz the bell, you’ll love the Earl Grey Martini.

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