Frivolous, audacious and oozing with glamour, Red Light Bar Bristol offers a night you’ll never forget…
I walk into the Red Light Bar Bristol – “Hi, yes, I’ll have the Slap and Tickle, please!”
Not necessarily something I feel comfortable saying out loud to another human being on a Saturday night, but hey, a girl has to order her drink by its real name and she has to do it like she means it.
The Red Light Bar Bristol Slap & Tickle consists of Glenfarclas 10-year scotch, Cointreau, spiced orange syrup, averna, cream, lemon and soda. After some crushing and mixing, the work of art from the bartender made my eyes squint and lips sucker- Have I ever had a stronger cocktail?
It was a little glass of heaven.
Although the location of Red Light Bar Bristol is wonderfully central (next to the College Green, on Unity Street), it is pretty invisible to those who aren’t looking for it. It’s an adult drinking-den, in the basement of a worn-down building, with nothing but a phone box lit with a red light to draw you in.
It was 7pm on an ice-cold Saturday when I slid over to the uber-cool Red Light Bar Bristol with a mysterious entrance, giggling like a little girl as my boyfriend used the graffitied telephone to call the bar to gain admission. Once we were buzzed in, we strolled down a few steep steps, where a sign, flashing red and blaring the word “SEX” beckoned us. ‘How discreet’, I thought.
I settle into the sofa while Misirlou plays (you know- the ultra-catchy Pulp Fiction theme song), and even the bartenders are dressed to kill – when did braces go out of fashion, anyway? The whole place is illuminated solely by candlelight and ultra-low lights which let me tell you- if you have been caught in the rain and have smudged mascara, or have sat through the longest day of work without the chance to switch up your lipstick, you will definitely appreciate this. Not only does it have your back, the light sets a flirtatious and inviting mood, with an atmosphere that brings out your daring side – laughing loudly and a reckless desire for more cocktails, heedless of their £10 a pop price tag. And romance? Between you and me, if you want a quick kiss then this lighting will make it feel like something straight out of a movie.
Red Light Bar Bristol provided the perfect atmosphere for a few drinks – maybe after a busy day exploring the centre, or in my case, as a starter to the night ahead. Although I was there having a great time with my boyfriend, it struck me that this bar would be the perfect place for a first date- as well as the super-flattering, super-flirty lighting, extra strong cocktails and fun music can take the edge off any situation, and make an already-good situation even better.
Hours of fun passed in what felt like no time, with several stumbles to the loo, embarrassing dance moves, and jokes that are probably only hilarious in that drunken state of mind- what more could you want from a night out? The seductively fun atmosphere made that Saturday night the best I have had for a while and, looking around the bar, I’d say everyone else was having the time of their lives, too – Red Light Bar Bristol has to be my new favourite place for a cocktail in Bristol!
Where: 1 Unity St, Bristol BS1 5HH