Shakin’ all over: London’s best boozy milkshakes

Boozy milkshakes are a thing of beauty. There isn’t a problem they can’t solve or a day they can’t improve. If you want to slurp a shake like a big kid but also want to get a little tipsy, they’re here for you. If you can’t manage dessert but you fancy something sweet – grab a straw. Feeling thirsty? Here’s where to find the best hard shakes in London.

Joe’s Southern Kitchen, Covent Garden – Joe’s is no stranger to extreme eats – chicken nacho wings, anyone? – and their drinks menu is pretty wild too. Expect sharing cocktails, shooters, American beers, and a slammin’ Happy Hour. Now they’re adding two new freakshakes to the mix, both spiked with Bulleit bourbon. There’s an Espresso Martini freakshake topped with wafers, biscotti and Nutella cream, and Mama’s Bourbon Cobbler, made with bourbon, peach liqueur, salted caramel and vanilla ice cream. You might want to split that one with a mate – it’s big, boozy, and topped with vanilla cream, peaches and Mama’s pineapple upside down cake.

Dirty Bones – For the ultimate all-American blow-out, head to Dirty Bones and get stuck into their mac ‘n’ cheese balls, fish tacos, and epic burgers. Don’t go too crazy though – you’ll want to save room for one of their boozy shakes. Choose from the bourbon-spiked Shadow, the Banilla Ice, or our personal fave: the Butter Baby, made with creamy butterscotch, vanilla ice-cream, milk, and Ketel One vodka. (Dirty Bones has restaurant in Soho, Carnaby and Shoreditch).

Heddon Street Kitchen, Mayfair – At Gordon Ramsay’s West End restaurant, there are three alcoholic shakes to choose from. Try the gin-based Game, Set & Matcha (made with matcha and vanilla ice-cream) or the Vote for Pedro – a creamy but potent mix of vanilla ice-cream, malt, Bacardi Carta Oro and Pedro Ximenez. If you’re more of a bourbon drinker, the Lucky No7 blends vanilla ice-cream with coffee, banana, and a generous splash of Jack Daniel’s. Maybe ask for two straws, because you know your date will want to steal a sip.

MASH, Soho – If you’re a Pulp Fiction fan, book a table at MASH for a steak supper followed by your very own Five Dollar Shake – an indulgent mix of Jack Daniel’s, Disaronno, mint, bourbon biscuits, cream, sea salt, and vanilla ice-cream.

Stax Diner, Soho – If you’re out on the town or just need to refuel after a shopping trip, head to Stax and get stuck into a cheeseburger or a shrimp po’ boy. With seven hard shakes and four hard ice-cream floats on offer, you’re spoilt for choice on the drinks front too. You can channel The King with the Graceland (a peanut butter, rum and banana shake) or try their Dalmation, an Oreo cookie shake with a dash of Bailey’s.

MEATmarket, Covent Garden – If you can resist their potent House Grog, MEATmarket serves properly delicious hard shakes in flavours like Black Forest, White Russian, and Banoffee Hi. We can highly recommend escaping Covent Garden’s busy piazza to smash a green chili cheeseburger, some hippie fries, and a Tennessee Maple – a thick vanilla shake spiked with Jack Daniel’s and maple syrup.

The Blues Kitchen – With bourbon, BBQ and live music until late, there’s a lot to love about The Blues Kitchen. It’s great for groups, so gather some pals and order up a feast of buffalo wings and slow-smoked ribs to line your stomachs for the night ahead. Pro tip: You can add a shot of your favourite liquor to any of their thick shakes. (The Blues Kitchen has restaurants in Camden, Brixton and Shoreditch).

There are lots more to try, of course. At Byron, you can add a shot of bourbon, Baileys or spiced rum to any of their shakes, and Big Easy serves four ‘X-Rated Shakes’, including a mint chocolate Grasshopper. Plus don’t forget, Be at One‘s ice-cream cocktails are all 2-for-1 during their daily Happy Hour.