Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Happiness Forgets, 14th May

Last week I had the good fortune, through winning a competition, to attend the launch of Remy Martin's cocktail app. This took place, fortuitously, at Happiness Forgets in Hoxton, a bar I have heard great things about but have not been successful in getting to, in part due to its popularity; Stephen and I chanced it one Friday night, not even that late but it was already packed to the rafters.

After going last night I can see it is easy to quickly reach maximum capacity as the place is dinky. A proper cosy little underground drinking den. 

I had a whale of a time. There were two types of Remy Martin cocktails to choose from (both quite strong as it turned out, and both being generously handed out whenever you were finished. Or, in my case, when you dropped yours at the bar and spilt it everywhere). I will admit it now, but both me and my friend had no idea what Remy Martin was and didn't manage to guess by the taste. It reminded us of rum or whiskey, and the cocktails they were making with it seemed to suit either liquor, but it didn't quite taste like either. Of course, that's because it was neither - it's cognac. Champagne cognac in this case.

I inadvertently took a picture while dropping my drink
Both cocktails were good - one, the Baptiste, was slightly more interesting, made with cider, maple syrup, lemon and orange bitters which sounded right up my street thought turned out not to be my favourite. The other, more pedestrian cocktail was Remy mixed with ginger beer. But I love ginger beer with alcohol and thought this combination was really good - it was slightly thick and syrupy to drink. I think I had two of each and possibly a third of another, but I'm not sure as I was getting quite squiffy by the end of it.

We also had 'canapes'. Now, if this is what constitutes canapes in Happiness Forgets' eyes, then I'd love to see what they class as a 'small plate'. Huge slabs of toasted bread with pulled pork and sweet pickles. I feel like I've had a lot of pulled pork in my time but this was SO good! 

They also had little bowls of mac n cheese, which was a little cold by the time me and Katherine shared one but was still deliciously rich and creamy/cheesy. I don't know if I could have managed a whole one. The last dish was a mini fish and chips but I didn't manage to try one of those. As we were starting to make our way out, I thought they had replenished the fish and chips (bad eyes) but no - it was little doughnuts dusted with pistachio that I could see! Okay, not the best doughnuts I've ever had but it was a nice gesture to also provide dessert.

Best of all we chatted to quite a few people. We chatted with the guy when we came in. We chatted to one of the girls who works there who told us how much she loves the place and what a neighbourhood feel it has. The staff pop in on their nights off because they like it so much. And we chatted to a couple of guys at the bar. Were they competition winners or there in a more formal capacity? I don't know but it was nice to mingle and I believe the venue lended itself to such possibilities. It feels friendly and welcoming inside. This is the kind of place I want to make my local.

I'm planning on going back on Thursday so that I can try some of the cocktails they serve on a regular basis.

Square Meal

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Please feel free to add your views, or maybe suggest somewhere I should put on my list!