When I was at university I studied abroad for a semester in New Orleans so it has always been a place of amazing memories very close to my heart. So when I heard NOLA, a New Orleans style bar, was coming to Shoreditch I got excited dreaming of the good bourbon and gumbo I would enjoy again.
But as keen I was to visit, this was dampened by our inability to find the place. After wandering Rivington Street for a good 10 minutes we gave up and asked someone who punched a code in a door and told us to follow the stairs up. I get they want to keep the place secretive but c’mon a sign on the door would help!
Once we arrived, I went for the classic a Hurricane cocktail. And it was good, well mixed in an ice cold glass and it made me nostalgic for a night in Pat O’Briens. But beware they’re deceptively strong, and it was only when my group stood up to leave we had to admit we were all feeling it.
The decor has a vintage, New Orleans feel with dark green leather booths, shutters, piano and ceiling fans, but you can tell it’s only been open a month as everything is still new and bit too shiny. In a few months when it’s more worn and used it’ll be perfect.
It’s a small and intimate venue only open Tuesday- Saturday, 6pm – midnight, with 12-3pm reserved for members. Given its hard to find it was quiet when we went, but I imagine its late night you need to go, with live music regularly on. And as membership is free with just a donation going to charity of your choice, it’s great if you’re always looking for a late night place to continue the party.
At the time of writing, the kitchen wasn’t up and running, but I imagine this will draw me back to try the cooking, and if its anything as good as their cocktails it’s safe to say its going to be good. (Words: Lucy Palmer)
For more info, visit: www.nola-london.com