There is something hugely satisfying about finding a hidden gem- especially one that you have walked past hundreds of times yet never assumed to be anything special . The Bridge just under the Hoxton railway bridge is exactly that. In fact this, from the outside rather dodgy looking bar, has been on my daily walk home every single day but until a few weeks ago never enticed enough to visit. Why? Well from what I could gather from the outside it looked like the kind of place you wouldn't want to go in wearing a floral crown and Taj Mahal print dress especially with some of the odd looks I received from behind the bar. As it turned out the Bridge is one of those places to not judge on first appearance and indeed the ground floor of it turned out to be rather different to the magical hidden space on the first floor. I have to thank my friend Steve for dragging me there who in his expertise of the area still remains way ahead of me having lived there for quite some time and had my full trust when he suggested the place, coining it as somewhere I would love despite my obvious reservation.
Drinks served here are cheap, simple and good ( think rum hot chocolate, a big glass of white wine for under a fiver and a large number of European beers), but really you don't come for the drinks as a little wander upstairs reveals something akin to a princess's boudoir. Extravagantly upholstered arm chairs, fabrics draping from the ceilings and an array of old and mismatched tables, clocks and lamps made me immediately fall in love with the Bridge's eccentric and completely other worldly atmosphere. In a town where crazes come and go and overhype is often the name of the game many restaurants and bars end up following the same formulas ( how many more exposed brick downtown NY style interiors can we see) and looking pretty generic, the Bridge is a welcome peculiarity that it was worth discovering and a hidden drinking den everyone should try