The Jade Door, 15-16 Gerrard Street, London, W1D 6JE, United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)20 7734 7276
Website: View bar's website
Hours: Sun-Tue 5pm-midnight, Wed 5pm-1am, Thu 5pm-2am, Fri-Sat 5pm-3am
Door: Make reservation
Style: Cocktail bar
Recommended for: Fun/atmosphere
Price guide: High-end
Food: Bar snacks
Owned by: Eric Yu
Images By: diffordsguide.com
A small name plate and rather larger bouncer tends to mark the entrance to this otherwise hidden venue that takes up three floors high above the Chinese restaurants of Gerrard Street. The sweet smell of incense guides you up the many stairs (no lift) to two bar areas, the focus of which is the second floor. Here you'll find a dark (so dark you'll need your iPhone to read the menu) and characterful opium den-style lounge with Asian furniture and decor. Activity is focused on a large apothecary table where drinkers sit amid the bartending action, ingredients and equipment.
A great sound system with a supper club soundtrack (loud but not invasive) provides an atmospheric backdrop to eastern-influenced cocktails, served with a variety of Asian flourishes, from grated ginseng garnishes to cocktails containing tapioca balls, distinguishing a list which already boasts Asian liquids from sake to shochu. Slick service and tasty steamed dumplings add up to a great night out. There's a real buzz around the venue, though prices are five star hotel-high.