Inception Group plans Phileas Fogg-inspired bar


WebInception Group, headed by Charlie Gilkes and Duncan Stirling, has revealed plans for its new site in London’s Mayfair, which is due to open in May.

Mr Fogg’s will be a recreation of the home of Phileas Fogg, the adventurer in Jules Verne’s classic novel Around the World in Eighty Days who lives in Mayfair after his travels.

The bar will be headed by Mark Jenner, formerly bar manager of The Coburg Bar at The Connaught Hotel in Mayfair, who aims to create an “elegant global drinking adventure”. He will source rare and unusual products from each continent, seeking to open up customers’ imaginations and palates to new and daring combinations.

The menu is intended to be a unique interpretation of “Victorian Cocktailian Culture”, with many classics from that era being revived with a modern twist, such as absinthe aperitifs, Gin Fizzes, grogs, Sazeracs, Stirrup Cups and Pousse-Cafés. There will also be sharing drinks in vessels inspired by Jules Verne’s novel such as globes, “red indian” heads, steam trains and antique punch bowls.

Inception Group, whose venues include Bunga Bunga in Battersea and Maggie’s in Chelsea, said the new bar would be “refined” but “truly off-the-wall”.

With the entrance hidden down a side street of Berkeley Square, the bar – formerly the site of Brutons -aims to have the same element of secrecy of the group’s speakeasy bar, Bart’s, in Chelsea, London.

A small plaque will mark a door with Victorian lanterns hanging outside. On arrival, guests will enter an immaculate hallway where they will be welcomed by Mr Fogg’s valet, Passepartout.

Mr Fogg’s will be modelled on the eccentric explorer’s period drawing room laden with artefacts and trinkets collected from his travels. The walls will be adorned with everything from stuffed Indian tigers and crocodiles to ornaments collected through his worldwide voyage.

Annotated maps and pictures from his travels will also feature prominently throughout the bar plus plenty of clocks – inspired by the importance that Mr Fogg places on punctuality during his travels.

There will also be a piano for sing-alongs and an open fireplace as well as a portrait of Fogg’s monarch, Queen Victoria, hanging alongside paintings of him and his ancestors.

Charlie Gilkes, who is a lifelong Phileas Fogg fan, said: “We’ve created Mr Fogg’s with a sense of history, adventure, fun and imagination. We hope to take you on a journey very soon – just don’t be late, we’re on a tight schedule!”

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