Sunday, 20 July 2008

Stepping up to the bar

It seems I can't get away from Czech things this year. Wandering through Shoreditch this weekend, a fantastic new discovery was made. Hidden between the usual cheapo take-away shops and newsagent is a small, anonymous door that leads into a dark and mysterious newspaper covered corridor leading to a stairwell. Curiously following these down takes you into a subterranean world of delights. For, concealed under the building street is a hidden bar, Lounge Bohemia, run by an excellent youthful Czech bartender named Paul and his witty and wicked female side-kick. The clever (and funny) humour isn't the only thing flowing - the drinks are too and are nothing less than fantastic. Much less expensive than many London bars, you'll certainly find something to take your fancy. But be bold, the courageous will be rewarded.
For a taste of the fin de si├Ęcle Parisian boulevardier, I tried an 'absinthe dripper' (the first of which I managed to throw on the floor in my excitement) for the near 19thC price of £2.50. Yum. That's all I'm saying. Paul's marvellous assistant then recommended I try the bizarrely named yet delicious 'Van's The Man', a concoction that also included the 'green fairy'. Yum again. And yum again for good measure - and good measures they were. Before long the evening had turned into the morning, and a damn fine time was had by all.
Even better is the fact that nobody is allowed to stand, so you can have a good conversation without having someone's bum shoved in your face. The retro seating is super comfy, and their policy also means that you don't feel 'crowded out'. Get there early though, as more people than were occupying all the seats were turned away while we were there. For smokers there's even a small private outside area. What more could you ask for? Go - as fast as your be-spatted legs will carry you.

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