Friday, 26 August 2011
Dalston Junction Room, Dalston
Tube meltdown survivors, we finally arrive - sweaty, prickly, hungry. Very hungry. Menu quickly eyeballed, we order. 'The kitchen closes at 9 pm.' says bar honcho. It is 9.03 and 14 seconds according to my not always Rolex-reliable retro timepiece. Honcho is not for turning. It's a fine welcome to this social space/ art gallery at the heart of Dalston, that most happening of 'hoods where hoodies have rioted over less. 'A dry martini?' smiles tag-along guinea pig, hopefully. ‘We don’t really make those. And, it wouldn’t be any good, anyway.' says Honest of Hackney. But there's strawberry mojito, orange caipirovska, Dalston bramble and rum’n’Ting, if that's your ting. (It's not). G Pig goes for Chilean sauvignon blanc. I sulk into a beer - never a good look. The place's look is salvage chic. That's the room and the punters by the way. This is what I imagine bars must have looked like circa Demis Roussos in Commie Albania, the only nation that ever found Norman Wisdom remotely funny. On an adjacent table, his doppelganger, a sallow beanpole in too short comedy trousers and boiled wool jacket, discusses what I take to be the latest underground ukulele band. Norm looks like the sort of cove who'd play such an instrument. I head downstairs to reccie a recently opened dance bar - Josef Fritzl's ideal discotheque? Suddenly, a door opens and a plate of hot food is wafted under my nose en route to a table upstairs. It is 9.19 pm. I swear its recipients - locals I'm guessing - weren't there at 9 pm. Maybe they phoned their order in ahead?
578 Kingsland Road E8 4AH 7241 5755