9 of the Best Cocktail Bars in Brighton

Published On June 15, 2014 | By Celia Mullins | Best of Brighton, Food & Drink Features

Looking for the best cocktail bars in Brighton? If you’re spending a little more than you would on your usual tipple you want to make sure you’re getting the best of the best. Here’s our favourite places to go for cocktails in Brighton so you’ll be guaranteed a really special drink every time. (Fancy a drink al fresco? Check out our guide to Brighton’s best beer gardens)


Tucked away in the depths of the The Lanes, BYOC is a speakeasy themed cocktail bar with a difference – It’s the only bar in Brighton that doesn’t serve any alcohol. Instead, bring your own spirits and watch as the expert mixologists whisk up exquisite cocktails to your taste using a comprehensive selection of homemade fresh syrups and bitters. Pay the set £20 entrance, then relax, safe in the knowledge that there’s nothing on the menu you can’t afford. Read our review HERE

 twisted lemon exterior2Twisted Lemon

Squeeze yourselves down one of Brighton’s skinniest alleys and you’ll find the bright yellow, no frills, laid back cocktail bar: The Twisted Lemon. This is a dynamic little cocktail bar that makes a lot of noise. It champions the showmanship of mixology, where the cocktail makers are barely a blur as they fling banana skins, smash ice and create a range of cocktails that are bursting with flavour, the Italian Job is particularly delicious.

bar valentino pic 2Bar Valentino

You’ve probably walked past Bar Valentino a thousand times without noticing its unassuming entrance. It’s a tiny but sophisticated first floor cocktail bar – just one room serving an intricate and extensive menu of drinks. The balcony overlooking the Pavillion Gardens means you can sit out on a summers dusk and enjoy a healthy spot of people watching. Prices are the Brighton cocktail standard £6.50 with a long running 241 deal that makes this sophisticated, well kept secret a surprisingly affordable affair.

 be at one cocktailsBe At One

The 19 strong London chain owes its popularity to a pretension free attitude, an old- school spirit and a priority placed on quality. The good news is it’s extended to Brighton! Be At One prides itself on it’s experienced and personable bar staff who undergo an eight week training programme and come out the other end as world- class mixologists. Drinks are priced between £7 – £9 with a 241 happy hour that’s on more than it’s off. Choose between classics or more obscure concoctions like the “Banana Banshee”. Read more HERE

 cocktail shack cocktailThe Cocktail Shack

The Cocktail Shack will transport you to a Rum- soaked Barbados beach bar. The new cocktail bar is made from salvaged wood from the West Pier and is full of candlelit tables, rustic features and a beach shack roof. The tiny bar specializes in a sweet selection of exotic rums as well as all the other necessary ingredients for your cocktail faves. The Domingo Martinez is particularly delicious – a Rhubarb and Custard delight, or try house original Truth be Told, featuring Coriander, Jalepeno Water and Absinthe!

 dirty blondeDirty Blonde

Since opening in March, Dirty Blonde has forged a reputation for glamour and grown up decadence, injecting a note of American East Coast 1920s opulence into proceedings. The cocktail menu boasts up to 30 speciality drinks. Alternatively, tell the skilled bartenders your favourite flavours and they’ll whip up a bespoke treat. Try The Zombie, a delicious blend which is as massive as it is dangerous and served in a cocktail shaker. Drinks coming in at £8 – £11 but it’s worth it if you’re in the market for  a premium drinking experience.

 the black dove barThe Black Dove

An intimate, cosy, and enticing boozer, littered with Victorian inspired collectables, twentieth century wonders and more than its fair share of cosy nooks and crannies. The bar has been widely praised for its extensive cocktail list and a team of accommodating bartenders who will make you just about anything beyond the menu. The master mixologists put on a show as they rework the classics and bring you a veritible bible of creative and unique concoctions starting at £6. Try the bold take on the espresso Martini.

speakeasy2The Speakeasy at The Wick

Jumping on the prohibition era trend, The Speakeasy joins the ranks of 1920s esque bars, standing out from the crowd with their quiet authenticity and expert cocktail prowess. Hiding above a seemingly traditional pub, The Speakeasy lays charm on thick, with a backdrop of jazz, candle lit booths and vintage signifiers. Cocktails reign supreme, priced at a reasonable £6.95. Sample the brandy delights of the ‘Side Car’ or try ‘The Mary Pickford’, created for the film star in Cuba during the prohibition era and made with rum, pineapple and cherry liquor.

 blanch house cocktails 2Blanch House

An upmarket and elegant cocktail bar just shy of Kemptown and set in the Georgian terrace, Blanch House Boutique Hotel. It’s all about elegance and class, with luxurious drinks, classic interiors and well dressed clientèle. Perfect for a special occasion or if you just fancy dressing up for a luxurious night. The cocktails served from a fine marble top bar are exquisitely crafted and made with luxurious finesse. Try the sweet and sour of their grenadine infused ‘Red Apple’ or their Pernod absinthe laden ‘Green Beast’.

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About The Writer

I grew up in Cambridge but after studying History at Sussex University, I couldn't bring myself to leave Brighton! As well as writing for We Love Brighton I study Journalism and hope to one day make it as a features writer. Brighton is the perfect place to get inspired!