Is anyone still heartbroken that their letter to Hogwarts never turned up (or is it just me)? Do you wish you could have learnt herbology with Professor Sprout? Or perhaps potions with Snape instead? Well, luckily for you at The Cauldron you can do just that! Although not in partnership with or endorsed by the likes of Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings, The Cauldron is a magical cocktail bar influenced by all things magical, fantasy and science-fiction. It can be found at 7 Elephant Road and for those of you who do not have a portkey, that would be five-minute walk from Elephant and Castle. This spell-binding experience lasts for 1h 45 minutes and includes a drink on arrival, two potion classes, robes and – of course – a wand! Unfortunately the magic isn’t that good that the drinks make themselves, but this is where the fun comes in as you get to transform from magician to mixologist and put your skills to test in this very atmospheric bar.
Most of you might be thinking: ‘Seriously, another pop-up bar?’, but what makes this bar so unique is the dedication put into the experience: cauldrons, levitation, fire, this really is an unforgettable experience. As soon as you’re seated you are greeted with a drink (please tell them whilst booking if you would prefer the non-alcoholic version; there is also the option to select gluten free and vegan options too). From here onwards you are mostly left to your own devices. Of course, they bring you spell books and magical ingredients, but these experiences are mostly self-lead. Personally, I preferred this as it gave me time to leisurely prepare the potion and take hundreds of photos. It also gives you the freedom to check out the hidden rooms they have dotted across the bar.
Whilst the experience advertises that it runs for 1h 45 minutes, if you opt to pay £10 more you can make another potion and stay for longer. Considering most bars in London sell cocktails for £12, this is extremely reasonable and I would definitely recommend you stay longer. If you would rather leave the spells to the professional wizards, you can either sit at the bar after your session or order a ready-made potion- look out for the ones that spit flames when a magical powder is added. If you’re feeling brave I would suggest trying Bubbling Shots of Death or Dragon’s Breath (yes I know the names themselves are enough to strike you still with awe!). But please remember, no drunk flying after this immersive and interactive experience!
Timeout has hailed The Cauldron a ‘geeky paradise‘ – why not visit yourself and come up with your own way of describing it? For more information and to book your tickets, visit: https://thecauldron.io/london
Location:7 Elephant Road, SE17 1LB. Nearest station: Elephant and Castle.
Opening hours: The Cauldron opens at its new site from September 26; open Wed-Sat each week from 11:00am – 11:30pm. Over 18s only.
Price: £29.99 – £35.99