The Plotting Parlour - Cocktail Bar Review

With the gentlemanly grandeur you’d imagine from the smoking room of the Titanic (but without the sinking), The Plotting Parlour takes an elegant approach to evening drinks. Enjoy bespoke cocktails without breaking the bank in this sophisticated seaside setting.

The Venue

The small seafront bar is decidedly snug, and oozes cool and class from the vintage cinema seats to the cocktails served in retro milk bottles. Choose to people-watch from a wooden table in the window or slink to the low-lit rear to sink into leather armchairs and take in the renaissance-inspired interior. A chic seated outdoor area allows you to clear your head if you partake in one too many Mai Tais – as it’s covered and explicitly cigarette-free, you’re protected from bad weather as well as fag burns in your coat.

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Snug enough for some slightly amorous supping, The Plotting Parlour reeks of dapper, vintage charm.

The Food and Drinks

Although the usual wines and beers are behind the bar, what the Plotting Parlour does best is cocktails. The menu features several bespoke concoctions which, aside from a few classics, you’re unlikely to find elsewhere. Tuck into a punchy Gin Jam Fizz with strawberry and black pepper jam or splurge your senses on a Ginger and Chilli Martini with El Jimador and a sassy, fiery rim, we can vouch for the bold innards of them all. To avoid over-indulging on an empty stomach, sophisticated snacks such as olives and luxury mixed nuts are on offer. These high standards come at a fair price, too. The cost of cocktails range from £7-9; cheaper than other places in the area that don’t do it nearly as well as the Plotting Parlour.

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Creative concoctions that create competition for some of the standard haunts around.

The Atmosphere

The entire set-up of the Plotting Parlour is so seductive you’re likely to have shown a little leg before you’ve even reached the bar – the low lights, plush leather armchairs and sultry 1920’s swing music all emanate sex appeal and encourage intimacy. The cosy size of the bar and elegant decor makes it best suited to small groups of mates or romantic dates.

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A dated destination that harks back to the classic cocktail crooning of days gone by.


Located between a cabaret bar and the big wheel, The Plotting Parlour brings a welcome break to the usual brashness of stereotypical seafront establishments. Although currently a well kept Brighton secret, with cocktails this good costing a fair price, it’s unlikely that the city will be able to keep its lips sealed for long.