The "World's First Hip Hop Speakeasy" Is Coming To Shoreditch

During the mid-80s, The Roxanne Wars rocked the NY hip-hop scene.

Two singers, Roxanne Shanté and The Real Roxanne, duked it out across dozens of diss tracks, answer records, and call-outs. Half the bands in the NY scene released their own Roxanne record. And its influence still resonates today, inspiring a hidden cocktail joint from the crew at Dirty Bones, opening next year.

Roxanne will be “The world’s first hip hop speakeasy”, which is a very specific crown, but one we certainly can’t dispute. The place will be around the corner from Dirty Bones’ flagship spot on Shoreditch’s Club Row. Head around the bend onto Whitby street, and you’ll find an appropriately graffiti heavy street. And under some of that graffiti will be a hidden door.

To be clear, this is not that door. It’s just a good excuse for a picture of Biggie.

Inside, the plan is to turn it into a slice of 1980s New York. Climb down the stairs up into the lounge space, and you’ll find a dark and moody hangout set to a soundtrack of old school hip hop, with a heavy lean towards the genre’s female pioneers, as well as some up-and-coming talent too. There’ll be DJs, live performances, and a state-of-the-art soundtrack system to play it all on.

Of course, the ‘speakeasy’ part of this hip hop speakeasy will involve a great deal of booze, particularly cocktails. Expect a menu featuring the likes of the Call Me Clementine (gin, kumquat liqueur, clementine and rosemary), plus a lineup of “clarified cocktails” that will apparently show off the bar’s “talents and aspirations”. Which sounds fancy. And of course, no Dirty Bones venue would be complete without a burger or two, which you’ll find here served up with fries & signature dips.

Apparently, the Roxanne Wars finally ended with the release of the final track, after close to 100 others before it. It was called ‘No More Roxanne (Please)’.

But after this place opens, we’re not sure we’ll agree with that sentiment.


NOTE: Roxanne is due to open end of March 2022. We’ll be back then with the full scoop. In the meantime, you can check out the website right HERE

Roxanne | Whitby Street, E1 6JX

Like hidden bars? Then check these puppies out… 


Whitby Street, Shoreditch, E1 6JX

Got A Tip? Email

More Ideas