A fairly typical tex mexy sort of place but obv Cuban. Wooden floors, a very nice and big bar. The service was very fast but as a result the cocktails are fairly ropey though after the first couple you dont really notice
I was with 10 people of varying ages who are not horrific food and wine ponces like me, they all thought the cocktails were fine. Anyone who remembers last years apple martinis will be disappointed (but not at the fact that they dont have to queue for half an hour to get them). However a very wide range of cocktails was sampled and no-one really had any whinges about them I thought the mojito was watery but we all know I am the fussiest person on earth. We also had a platter thing to start which everyone wolfed down but tbh it wasnt great. However it did soak up the cocktails well.
There was plenty of seating in the bar at one end plus a few tall tables. It would easily accommodate 100+ of us. Nice as not huge so wouldnt feel empty though you wouldnt want less than 70 ish. I counted at one point and there were about 45 people in the bar and it was not at all crowded, everyone had a seat and service was good.
The layout - you come in up one step, then the disabled loo is on that level. There are then 3 steps up to the cocktail bar so Bunglie would have to be carried up there and then back down to go to the loo is that ok? I seem to remember a similar arrangement a couple of years ago. So you are then in the cocktail bar which is long and thin, there is a skylight at the back so it is not too dark (though in Dec I guess I would be!). Running parallel to that is the restaurant with a few arches through. The restaurant sits 100 I think if you have long tables. The music was really not loud at all in the restaurant. Plus there is a small section at the front of it down a couple of steps where there is no music so you can escape it.
Food two of us had tapas (I sacrificed having fajitas to sample it as I believe the xmas menu is tapas like the party one) Now, I am not a big fan of tapas and probably not the best person to review being a food ponce and all. It was edible. Everyone else pronounced it delicious (sampling was done by all). I had chorizo in red wine which was good but not quite spicy enough for my taste, tortilla (ie omelette with potato) which was filling but a bit tasteless and a chicken and pepper thing that was ok. One of my colleagues had prawns in a spicyish tomato sauce which was nice. Anyway, it was edible as I say. The service was very good. The bog standard 2005 Rioja at £13.95 a bottle was really very good I thought (I was pronounced a snob for asking for an ice bucket as it was too warm!) One person had cheesecake which he said was good.
The club downstairs wasnt open but we went in and checked it out. A nice room about 40 x 20 foot I would say, rather sweaty, looks like it would be good fun with a bit of music and dancing.
It wasnt terribly busy, about 45 in the bar all of whom came in and ate. The general vibe was quite fun, they dimmed the lights and it was quite pretty! It was in no way a gourmet experience but the music and surroundings were good and the service excellent.
My only concern would be that if there were only about 70 of us and half of those went off downstairs to dance it might seem a bit empty upstairs. If there were 100 of us I think it would be perfect.
I suggest Eleusis et al go one night and check it out too. All my colleagues said they thought it would be a good party venue for 100 people.
We would have the whole restaurant to ourselves. I'm not sure about the cocktail bar. The club would be open to the public but as it's in the City I would't ahve thought it would be very busy without us, but as is near xmas it may be
Thanks CD, I think it sounds OK. As for carrying me, forget it! I have been dropped too many times over the years but I have a 'bum shuffle' that any baby would be proud of and I will manage just as long as I know in advance. It is so I dont turn up in one of Hunkermunkers mini-skirts or Beetys pink wellies neither of which would be practical for the 'Bunglie Bum Shuffle'. Thank you for checking it out and thinking of me.
Yep! 2 years ago we had at least 100 people so I really do not see why they cant get off their very trim arses and come.
Are we still aiming for the 1st December?
Did you notice if there was anywhere within falling distance for us lot who will want a hotel?
Are we having badges?
What about Dh's and dp's?
I love cocktails so I vote for CD's place in preference to the Hilton, sorry