14 Ways To Seize The Day (Of The Dead)

By Phil Clarke, Editor of The Handbook website Phil Clarke |
31st October 2019

While we’re off being mugged by trick-or-treaters or else dashing around on low-rent broomsticks celebrating American import Halloween, the Mexicans are doing things properly with Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead. The celebration is far more wholesome than Halloween, falling on All Souls Day and celebrating life while honouring those who have died. And they drink loads of tequila for it. What’s not to love?

Sexy Fish

Sexy Fish

Berkeley Square hot spot Sexy Fish is, it turns out, scary as well as sexy. And when it comes to Día de los Muertos the restaurant has partnered with The House of Suntory to give the Sexy Fish annual Halloween party a Day of the Dead twist. Expect an immersive dining experience like no other, with cocktails featuring Japanese spirits while surrounded by an array of acrobats, dancers and vocal artists performing in a show specially created for the restaurant and decked out in Day of the Dead-themed costumes which will be inspired by the restaurant’s most iconic characters.

Friday 1st November

Where: Berkeley Square House, Berkeley Square, London W1J 6BR, UK
Nearest station: Green Park (0.3 miles)
Website: www.sexyfish.com

MNKY HSE

MNKY HSE

Stop monkeying around and head down to MNKY HSE. What they lack in vowels they make up for in ghouls this Day of the Dead. Día de los Muertos comes to life courtesy of of premium tequila Don Julio, and the venue is Latin American fine dining restaurant MNKY HSE. Expect plenty of colour, floral displays and face painting (all visitors can be transformed into La Catrina, the iconic Day of the Dead skeleton icon – ideal for Insta-addicts). The Mexican feast on offer in the dedicated menu is paired with perfectly designed Don Julio cocktails.

Available from Wednesday 30th October until Friday 1st November

Where: 10 Dover Street, Mayfair, W1S 4LD
Website: www.mnky-hse.com

Novikov

Novikov

Mayfair’s Novikov has decided to combine their Halloween and Día de los Muertos celebrations. They’ve left ‘no grave stone unturned’ (extra points for that pun, Novikov) in devising a celebration along with our favourite tequilla-ists, Patrón. Enjoy a festival of skulls and skeletons in Novikov’s Lounge Bar this Day of the Dead.

Saturday 2nd November

Where: 50A Berkeley Street, Mayfair, W1J 8HA
Website: www.novikovrestaurant.co.uk

Ella Canta

Ella Canta

‘I see a red door and I want to paint it black’, less the sentiments of Mick Jagger and more the credo of celebrated Mexican chef Martha Ortiz. Mainly because she’s gone and done exactly that to celebrate Day to the Dead at Ella Canta by making all the food black. After success with the menu last year, she’s brought back the eight course black extravaganza: black. Margaritas: black. Decor: black. Staff: painted as skulls.

Thursday 31st October until Saturday 16 November

Where: 1 Hamilton Place, Park Lane, Mayfair, W1J 7QY
Website: www.ellacanta.com

Wahaca

Wahaca

When: Thursday 1st November

Considering itself of something of a ground-zero for Mexican food in London, Wahaca is celebrating Día de los Muertos with £5 Margaritas as part of a week-long fiesta. Expect to enjoy a special menu including butternut squash tacos, slow-cooked beef brisket tacos and prawn cocktail tostada. Enjoy a special Day of the Dead themed gig in a secret London location on Wednesday 30th November.

From Monday 28th October until Sunday 3rd November

Where: Various
Website: Get tickets here...

Santo Remedio

Santo Remedio

London Bridge Mexican Santo Remedio will be doling out complimentary Margaritas to anyone dining in fancy dress this Día de los Muertos. Although not specified, we’re assuming they’re hoping for Day of the Dead outfits, so if you happen to be fine wandering the streets with a skull painted across your face then head down for dinner. (the offer is also available on their bottomless brunch, but given this comes with bottomless Margaritas anyway…)

Saturday 2nd November

Where: Santo Remedio, 152 Tooley Street, London Bridge, SE1 2TU
Website: www.santoremedio.co.uk

100 Wardour St

100 Wardour St

For the week or so around the start of November, the Atrium at Soho’s 100 Wardour Street will be covered in traditional Día de los Muertos marigolds and calaveras (those iconic Mexican skulls) to celebrate their bespoke Patrón Día de Muertos cocktail menu.

Doubling down on the excitement, the venue will throw a special Day of the Dead brunch on Saturday 2nd November.

Tuesday 22nd October until Sunday 10th November

Where: 100 Wardour Street, Soho, London, W1F 0TN, United Kingdom
Nearest station: Tottenham Court Road (0.4 miles)
Website: www.100wardourst.com

The Perception at W London

The Perception at W London

Ultimate party givers Candypants have teamed up with W Hotel London to put together a Día de los Muertos brunch, with tickets including one main dish from the W Brunch menu, an unlimited pancake and waffle station with 90 mins of bottomless Frosé & Prosecco and, most importantly, access to the after-party.

Saturday 2nd November

Where: 10 Wardour Street, Leicester Square, London, W1D 6QF, United Kingdom
Nearest station: Piccadilly Circus (0.2 miles)
Website: www.candypants.events

Oblix at The Shard

Oblix at The Shard

Día de los Muertos will peak at Oblix at The Shard quite literally. The highest Day of the Dead party in the country will kick off at the sky scraper in partnership with ultra-premium tequila and mezcal brand Casamigos. With a Yuzu cocktail on arrival, guests will enter a transformed Oblix ready for an evening of live entertainers and performers, a freakish step and repeat photo wall, outrageous outfits (wear something lamboyant). The whole event will be soundtracked by DJ Tony.

Friday 1st November

Where: The Shard, 31 St Thomas Street, Borough, SE1 9RY
Website: Get tickets here...

The Book Club

The Book Club

With all this Día de los Muertos chat are you a little concerned about cultural appropriation? Given you’re eight items deep into a listicle of places you can dress as a Mexican, probably not, but either way The Book Club in Shoreditch have got together with Mexican Londoner Paola Feregrino who is keen to give a lesson or two about how to avoid the phenomenon. She’ll also be throwing a genuine Mexican Day of the Dead party, organised by Mexican-London group Axolotl with a mix of DJ sets, immersive storytelling, facepainting and, of course, plenty of tequila.

Saturday 26th October

Where: 100-106 Leonard Street, Shoreditch, EC2A 4RH
Website: Get tickets here...

Oriole

Oriole

The beautiful basement bar Oriole will be serving five Patrón cocktails this Día de los Muertos, accompanied by gypsy jazz from the Harry Diplock Trio and a decor decked in marigolds and skulls. And if you pay for ‘Golden Tickets’ you’ll receive premium seats for the performance, a Patrón cocktail and a limited-edition resin custom made Patrón x Oriole coaster.

Thursday 31st October

Where: Smithfield Markets, East Poultry Avenue, EC1A 9LH
Website: www.oriolebar.com

Mr Fox

Mr Fox

You know who always gets left out of Día de los Muertos celebrations? Dogs, that’s who. Well not at Croydon’s Mr Fox. Welcome to Day of the Dog. The immersive Day of the Dead celebration will celebrate dogs with games, mariachi music, free face-painting (for the humans, obviously) and a chance to stay in the spirit of the Día de los Muertos by bringing photos of deceased dogs and adding them to the altar. You can also bring your dead dog’s favourite food or toys to complete the celebration. Nuts, yes, but nevertheless special.

Where: 34 Surrey Street, Croydon, CR0 1RJ
Website: Get tickets here...

Bourne & Hollingsworth

Bourne & Hollingsworth

Immerse yourself in the mayhem of Bourne & Hollingsworth’s Dark Circus Party. The event will be given a Día de los Muertos makeover, with skeletal face-painting along with the usual fare including fire-breathers, stilt walkers and burlesque dancers.

Saturday 2nd November

Where: 42 Northampton Road, Clerkenwell, EC1R 0HU
Website: www.darkcircusparty.com

Chotto Matte

Chotto Matte

Japanese Peruvian joint Chotto Matte will be running with the Día de los Muertos theme as they introduce not only a signature Patrón Día de Muertos cocktail, but two bespoke menu items in the form of Día de Muertos Ceviche and the Sugar Skull Sundae.

Sunday 27th October until Sunday 3rd November

Where: 11-13 Frith Street, Soho, W1D 4RB
Website: www.chotto-matte.com

Biscuiteers

Biscuiteers

Not only do biscuit-makers-extraordinaire Biscuiteers create arguably London’s best biscuits (their Día de los Muertos biscuits are particularly special), but you can to. Their Clapham and Notting Hill cafés offer icing classes, with a Day of the Dead special.

Various dates…

Where: Notting Hill and Clapham
Website: Get tickets here...

If you’d rather celebrate Halloween (or, even better, also celebrate Halloween) then check out our suggestions here…

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