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Guide to Cocktail Bars in Bury St Edmunds

Classic, long, short or sparkling: however you like your cocktails, Bury St Edmunds has a bar that’s perfect for you.

Whether you’re partial to a Buck’s Fizz for brunch, a bellini for lunch or a negroni at nightfall, you’re spoilt for choice in Bury St Edmunds. Here’s our guide to cocktail bars in town. 

Sumptuous hotel bars

Two of the town’s historic hotels have earned strong reputations for their exquisite cocktail bars. Step down into the vaults beneath the 12th century Angel Hotel to discover the unique Wingspan Bar, and find a seat within the secret tunnels’ pillars to experience the space’s incredible 700 years of history. 

Wherever you look, there’s something to marvel at, not least the bar and tables created from an aircraft engine and doors. 

Exclusive signature cocktails include the Wingspan Julep, made with Maker’s Mark Bourbon, fresh mint leaves, Fernet Branca, gomme syrup and grapefruit bitters, and the Prince, made with Chambord, Tanqueray gin, fresh lime and sugar syrup, topped with fizz and fresh raspberry. 

Walk around the Abbey Gardens on Angel Hill to Northgate Street and you will find The Northgate, a glamorous boutique hotel with a fresh metropolitan feel. 

Formerly known as Ounce House, this Victorian hotel has been extensively renovated with an immaculate finish. Cocktails can be enjoyed in the bar and lounge area, in the excellent restaurant or outside on the large south facing terrace. If the air is cool, stay warm beneath the heated parasols. 

The Northgate boasts an inviting cocktail list, created with handpicked spirits, freshly squeezed juices and homemade syrups. We recommend the Walled Garden Punch, made with Aperol, Kamm & Sons, Crème de Peche, Cherry Marnier, Sauvignon Blanc, pomegranate and basil soda and herbs, or the Foraged Martini, made with St George Terroir gin, Lillet Blanc, Mastika and Douglas fir pine. 

Mastering the art of cocktails

With 2-for-1 cocktails served every day from 3pm to 7pm, The Snug Bar is the ideal place to meet friends at the start of the night. With fun and quirky décor combining heritage colours and various curios, the vibe is relaxed and friendly while standards for drinks and food are high. 

The huge cocktail menu includes all the classics as well as some Snug originals, including the Captain Pugwash (Sailor Jerry’s spiced rum and Kwai Feh lychee liqueur shaken with lychee purée, elderflower, apple juice and ginger ale, served over crushed ice) and the Bramble El Mexico (Olmeca tequila muddled with fresh orange, lime and lemon, topped with crème de mure liqueur over crushed ice). 

The menu also includes ice cream cocktails: the perfect finish to a Friday night meal! Want to learn how to mix and shake your own cocktails? Book on to one of the Snug’s regular cocktail classes.

You can also learn how to make cocktails at The LP, where Cocktail Shaker Nights are regular events. A trained mixologist will teach you how to make your favourite cocktails over a 2-course meal before you hit the dance floor in the nightclub. If you just want to relax in the laidback music-themed bar, you’ll find a mouth-watering choice of cocktails to choose from here too, as well as a wood-fired pizza oven, to help you soak up the alcohol. We liked the Lavender Martini, made with gin shaken with fresh lemon juice, egg white and lavender gomme syrup, and the Mai Tai (LP Formula): a mix of rum, Amaretto and Triple Sec, shaken with fresh lime, Orgeat syrup and pineapple juice.

If you love gin, you’ll also want to check out The Stillery, which makes its very own incredible Stillery London Dry Gin. Enjoy a range of cocktails and G & Ts in this hip ‘speakeasy’ style cocktail bar with table service. As well as the house gin, we recommend the Slingsby Rhubarb Gin with Mediterranean tonic and the Garden Tiger gin with Indian tonic. 

Café bars and late-night venues

If you’re serious about your cocktails – and the quality of the ingredients and the expertise of your bartender – make sure you schedule a drink or two at Guat’s Up. As well as serving and selling superb Butterworth and Son coffee, this Guatemalan themed coffee shop and bar serves a small selection of meticulously created cocktails, mixed from carefully chosen ingredients. The Espresso Martini, made with a double espresso, Stolichnaya vodka, Kahlua and sugar, is unbeatable. 

You’ll find a huge range of cocktails at the So Bar, where the daily happy hour lasts from 6pm until 9pm. Tucked away in Langton Place, this modern café bar is a great spot for a mojito, made with Bacardi Braveheart, Oro Or Blanea, mint, lime, sugar syrup and optional fruit purees. Head over to Karooze Café Bar after if you want to dance and drink cocktails late into the night.