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Tuesday 20 April 2010

Cocktail Hour: Idlewild

Idlewild had a lot to live up to. I've been wanting to come here for ages. Years, even. But, as Idlewild is right at the very far end of London, and Domestic Sluttery HQ is right at the other end, it's taken me a while to get over there. But, Domestic Slut Alex S and I finally found our way over there at weekend.

I've found myself staring at the photos on the website more than once, so I know how pretty this place is. Lots of black and sumptuous seating. High ceilings, simple elegance, and just a tiny amount of ostentation. The interior is pretty gorgeous. Unfortunately, sitting in a pretty building isn't that fun if your cocktails aren't that great.

I still don't understand why my Brandy Alexander was £8, when the rest of the cocktails were £7. Surely that kind of surcharge is reserved for bubbles? I also have no idea why, despite my protests, the cocktail only filled half a martini glass. There was no chocolate around the rim, no grated nutmeg. And I don't think being told 'it's a big glass' is an excuse for charging so much for what's effectively a shot of brandy with not much else. I felt entirely ripped off. If you're going to pour me a cocktail, pour me one. Alex S' Dark 'n' Stormy wasn't the worst thing ever, but we've both tried better. It didn't taste of rum at all, and was left unfinished.

Our cocktails were finished in silence (rare for us, I know) and we were really rather blue at travelling so far and having a rubbish time. The attitude we got from the barman outside didn't help either. I was rooting for Idlewild to be such a great bar, but it fell so short of the mark for me (granted, my benchmark is high). I won't be back to Idlewild. I don't think we'd go back even if it was on our doorstep. Which is a shame, because it really is very pretty.

Idlewild is at 55 Shirland Road in Maida Vale. Nearest tube is Warwick Avenue.

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