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BAR TIME

“Descending the stairs, you pass a glass wall overlooking the neighbouring kitchen’s butchery

chamber before you reach the basement and find the subterranean speakeasy cocktail club...”

Jack Solomons Club, a new Soho speakeasy bar,

has just opened in the basement of 41 Great

Windmill Street in London, bringing a dose of

old-school glamour to W1.

It’s inspired by the legacy of Jack Solomons,

an iconic Soho character who fought under the

name Kid Mears and whose boxing gym was

located here throughout the 1940s and 50s.

Following a short professional career, Jack

CONCIERGE

New Soho

speakeasy bar

with a boxing heritage is set to

become London’s late-night choice

Fighting

spirit

JANUARY

35

FLY Flybe has flights to London City from Aberdeen, Amsterdam, Belfast City, Düsseldorf, Edinburgh, Exeter and Rennes (from 17th July). Flybe’s franchise partner Blue Islands has flights to London City from Jersey

stepped out the ring at the behest of his future

wife, Fay, and concentrated on his day job, selling

fish from a stall in Petticoat Lane market. But

Jack realised the real money, and a longer boxing

career, lay in promoting bouts. Jack found fame

and fortune in British boxing’s golden years

after the SecondWorldWar, as he took a new

approach, bringing big fighters from the US and

Britain together. Going on to promote 26 world

title fights and working almost up to his death

in 1979, Jack knew everyone.The boxing gym

where Jack’s stable of prize fighters trained and

the office he kept, were frequented by all the

era’s most colourful characters.

Jack Solomons Club encapsulates the spirit

of the colourful world he inhabited – if Jack

Solomons had had a bar, this would have been

it. Harking back to classic Soho, the design

epitomises a bygone era of London clubs in

opulent style, with plush finishes including

pewter-metal bar counters, shaded velvet

furnishings and red leather walls.

The club’s entrance is through a hidden

door accessed via an after-hours, street-side

deli. Descending the stairs, you pass a glass

wall overlooking the neighbouring kitchen’s

butchery chamber before you reach the

basement and find the subterranean speakeasy

cocktail club to one side and dance floor to

the other.

Jack Solomons’ tipple was Scotch. Specialising

in whisky and with an extensive list, the club

serves a sophisticated contemporary cocktail

menu, with a nod to important characters in

Jack’s life: Nipper Morris (a Solomons-promoted

bantam-weight fighter) is made with Glenfiddich

12-year-old, plum syrup, lemon juice and egg

white; Black Jack (his favourite greyhound)

consists of Laphroaig, maraschino liqueur and

lime juice, while Old Guard (the nickname

for Charlie Rose, a journalist of the time and

Solomon’s personal nemesis) mixes Woodford

reserve bourbon, bitters and apricot brandy.The

drinks list sits alongside a menu of bar snacks

and small plates inspired by Solomons’ early

spell as a fishmonger, with dishes such as Crab

Croquettes, Hot Smoked Trout with Horseradish

and Rocky’s Fish & Chips.

A vast space, licensed for 390 people and

with seating for 150, Jack Solomons Club is

a Soho destination for dancing late into the

night. Wednesday to Sunday evenings see live

bands, DJs, special one-off events and guest

appearances entertain until the early hours.

Jack Solomons Club

41 Great Windmill Street

London, W1D 7NB