Mr Fogg’s Gin Parlour Afternoon G&Tea takes place every Saturday at 2.01pm
With the original Mr Fogg’s in Mayfair, its Covent Garden-located sister, Mr Fogg’s Tavern boasts a downstairs pub with a separate side entrance leading directly upstairs to a fabulous Victorian-inspired Gin Parlour.
Decorated with curios from the late 19th century, chaise longues, damask curtains, glass chandeliers and with a marble-topped bar made from a pharmacist’s cabinet, the theatrical salon is inspired by Phileas Fogg’s beloved late aunt and acclaimed actress, Gertrude Fogg, who left her humble abode to her nephew. Since her passing, so the story goes, Phileas Fogg has announced he will keep the upstairs parlour and salon as a refuge from the folly of the Tavern below…
Expect to be greeted by a Victorian era-dressed Gin Master who will help you navigate London’s largest gin collection.
Despite its central location, it’s hidden enough to escape the tourists. It’s ideal for small groups of friends and parties (there’s space for 50 guests upstairs).
The afternoon G&Tea:
Even the most avid gin connoisseur will find something new and unique from the collection of more than 300 gins, 15 tonics and numerous complimenting botanicals.
We were here to sample afternoon G+Tea. After enjoying a crisp G&T served in a balloon glass by a dapper barman, we were taken on a mini Gin Safari* with an entertaining introduction to the history of gin (Dutch mercenary William of Orange introduced Genever, the precursor to gin, to the UK in the 17th century) accompanied by two samples – an Old Tom Gin-style gin followed by a London Dry-style gin (developed in the 19th century).
There are three teapot sharers on the menu. We were seduced by Do Give This a Chai, a sweet tea made with chai and almond butter-infused Tanqueray London Dry Gin, lemon and honey. The Victorian-inspired afternoon tea didn’t blow us away but it was homemade and generous. Our pretty three-tier stand was dressed with tomato frittatas, finger sandwiches (egg mayo and cucumber, and cheese and pickle), scones served with jam and clotted cream, and miniature banoffee pies, Eton mess’, lemon and champagne possets, and palate-cleansing champagne jellies.
Jack Davis, the close-up magician who joined our table for a while before moving to the next, did blow us away, however. ‘I’ve got goosebumps,’ said the girl sitting across from me, incredulously.
G&T with a single teapot to share between two, £40 per person; G&Tea with a bottomless teapot to share between two, £69 per person
Mr Fogg’s Gin Parlour, 1 New Row, Covent Garden, WC2N; mr-foggs.com/gin-parlour; 020 7590 3605
*Gin Safari, £40 per person, is available at Mr Fogg’s Gin Parlour and includes one-and-a-half hours of gin tuition, six different gins and two G&Ts.