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Friday, 4 April 2014

Knowhere Special, Kentish Town

(Above: back in the day when you picked up METRO for its restaurant, bar and arts reviews - i.e. last week
 - before the bean-counters' baffling brand-threatening decision to cull quality freelance contributors )

One little corner of Kentish Town, or K-Town as it's known locally, just got a lot more interesting. Grab a speck, asparagus, mozzarella and parmesan thin-crust at Pizza East then head over the road for late night tonsil lubing at this handy new hole in the ground. Think of it as a destination bar BOGOF as shexy Shebeen gets a new next door neighbour. If you know where - behind an unmarked door to the right of a caff called Mamma Mia, you'll find special. Do I dig it? I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do; for here's the sort of bonkers indie booze bunker London does so well. Clothes hung out to dry overfly a narrow corridor papered in lurid oriental wallpaper so wanky, you imagine Widow Twankey's Chinese laundry within. Push on downstairs and, beyond a fabric curtain, discover a 15 by 15 squeeze with converted coal holes of, part of a bonkers booze basement tricked out like Josef Fritzl's cellar as imagined by Coronation Street harpie Vera Duckworth. Cocktails, despite daft titles such as get me a bourbon, I’m hungry (toasted pistachio-infused bourbon, Cherry Heering, vermouth and chocolate bitters) are on the money at ten plus one of your English pound coins. "Eleven quid?" you gasp? True, K-Town ain't Kensington, no matter how the man in the Foxton's Mini might spin it, but the uptown price does include all manner of odd snacks such as salmon pancakes with smoked vodka sour, bear with me honey. TBH, I'd rather get rinsed on the classics, sans gimmicks, at £6.50 than be taken to the cleaners for the sake of the toffee apple and salted chocolate caramels that come with friar’s luck (home-spiced rum, Benedictine, yellow Chartreuse, burnt orange and frankincense). Either way, this dinky dive is, indeed, Special K. 
296 Kentish Town Road NW5 2TG  

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