Leeds is known to many as a brilliant city for a night out. With near innumerable pubs, bars and clubs there is truly something for everyone in the bustling city centre. But for those of you that crave mystery, creativity and something a bit different, why not try one of these 7 hidden Bars in Leeds?
Leeds boasts some of the coolest hidden bars inspired by the Prohibition period; think hidden doors, secret stairs, and smooth jazz. These bars offer an exciting chance to step back into the past and provide a welcome change to the standard evening itinerary. Each bar has its own unique atmosphere that is sure to provide an unforgettable experience!
Down in the Grand Arcade is our first hidden bar and it’s got all the trimmings. Tailor’s really captures the essence of the roaring 20’s; a classy, bespoke tailors by day which transforms into a fabulous gin bar by night!
They serve their own bespoke London dry gin blend that is inspired by the artistry of traditional tailoring, as well as a wide selection of other specialist and flavoured gins. Not a gin-thusiast? Not to worry, they also offer an array of spirits and you’d be missing out if you didn’t try one of their 20’s style cocktails.
So, put on your best 20’s attire or pick something from their rails of vintage wear and immerse yourself in a prohibition party experience.
Our next secret speakeasy is Blind Tyger. You’ll find it tucked up above their sister-venue Sandinista, an excellent rock n’ roll bar in its own right. Follow the secret stairs up to the cosy, hidden gem and you’ll be welcomed into a lavish, candle lit drinking den. The staff take pride in their work, using unique handmade ingredients to boost the flavour profiles of their drinks. Inventive additions to classic cocktails push the bar of modern cocktail making.
You might struggle to decide which drink to choose. Fortunately, on some nights, they offer 2 cocktails for £15 before 7pm, allowing you to explore your options effectively. Once you’ve found the perfect beverage you can settle into one of the leather booths and absorb the intimate ambiance. The music ranges from swing to blues and you’ll even hear some hip-hop too.
Blind Tyger also offer an exciting cocktail workshop, suitable for parties, work-do’s or stag/hen nights. You’ll get a chance to make your own tipple, you’ll learn all about your chosen spirit, experience a tasting and gain all the skills to become a confident mixologist!
Just like the previous mentions this bar is near invisible to the naked eye! Head down to The Grand Arcade and pop into Lord’s Barbering. Concealed behind a backdoor (and Door Staff) is the soulful Domino Club; there is no entry fee, but donations are welcome to help pay for their live music acts. Once you descend into the bar you will be whisked away to the 20’s by the thrilling tones of live Jazz and Funk.
At the bar you’ll find an extensive selection of wines and beers for every taste, or perhaps you’ll be enticed by one of their avant-garde cocktails like the Afternoon Chai or Midsummer Martini. If you’re in the mood for spirits, they’ve got plenty! Their unique ‘break-even spirit’ deal is definitely worth checking out. Every week they offer a measure of an expensive spirit at a much lower price, recently they’ve even begun including ‘break-even cocktails’ for an added dose of decadence.
As their name suggests, Below Stairs is a perfect off the beaten path bar that will delight drinkers of any persuasion. Found just off Greek Street on South Parade, you could be forgiven for walking right past it. But head down the stairs and you’ll find yourself in a trendy drinking den.
The bar staff are masters of their craft and will be more than happy to help you navigate the drinks menu. All their cocktails are crafted in house with the aim of creating a sensory experience not just a drink. Their unusual ingredients will pique the interest of many, yet they are more than happy to whip up a classic for you.
Down on Call Lane, Tiki Hideaway is hidden in plain sight. Accessed via the stairs in Call Lane Social the door opens into an inviting Polynesian paradise! You’ll be amazed by the flaming cocktails and beach hut bar, though the nights are getting colder every night feels like tropical summer at Tiki Hideaway. Pick up a lei and find a space on the floor to dance the evening away to your favourite hits.
Tiki Hideaway could also make the perfect venue for a private party. With ample space for hosting and a selection of activities like beer pong & cocktail classes their team will do their best to bring the fun to your event.
Lower Briggate is chock full of bars with a vibrant scene, and we’d be remiss not to mention Smokestack. Situated as a single door on the street entering onto a narrow staircase, you’ll be transported to a New Orleans Jazz and Blues bar. It’s one of the best spots for an old-school boogie situated over two floors. You’ll find a much more relaxed atmosphere downstairs, but head up to The Roost to catch one of their live bands playing an eclectic mix of music.
When it comes to drinks, spirits are their thing. They know how to blend them perfectly, providing excellent and informed service. They have an exciting range of signature cocktails like the Dionysus and Granada Verde. You can even learn to make your own delicious concoctions with their cocktail workshops.
It’s back to the 20’s with our final bar. The Maven may be ‘the best kept secret’ in Leeds. Discreetly located on Call Lane with only an ‘M’ to indicate you’re on the right track. Head up the stairs and take in the sophisticated vintage décor. It provides an intimate setting for drinks in the early evening before becoming a party worthy of the great Jay Gatsby himself later on!
The bar is staffed by award winning mixologists who put a creative turn on all their serves. You can enjoy unique takes on classics like the Maven Daquiri and delicious gin drinks like the Lady of Sage and Gin Garden. The Maven also has 3 hidden spaces that are available for private hire, alongside cocktail tastings and masterclasses!
This list by no means covers all of Leeds’ hidden drinking gems but hopefully you’ve gotten a taste of what’s out there. These secret haunts might be the perfect twist for a night on the town or equally offer a unique experience for a more intimate evening. If you’ve got the itch to go hunting for speakeasies, do check out the Hidden Bars Trail on the Discover App (our maps will even lead you right to their door!). Download the Discover App here
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