"Strong liquor and rock ‘n’ roll"Review Rating: Reviewed by Leila
Their tagline, “rock ‘n’ roll, whiskey, cocktails and pizza” perfectly sums up Aces and Eights, a new bar situated directly opposite Tufnell Park tube station.
The Fighting Cock bourbon at 50% strength may well induce bouts of both cockiness and fighting, but hopefully nothing more serious than a spot of bra-waving, as the underwear hanging from the ceiling of this self-styled saloon seems to indicate. It has a pleasing hint of sweetness making it extremely palatable on the rocks, yet retains that warming kick all good spirits should have.
Aside from an assortment of bras that would make La Senza proud, Aces and Eights is dark and dingy, adorned with rock ‘n’ roll posters, neon signs and a pinball machine. A tiny makeshift stage sits in one corner, ready to host blues and rock ‘n’ roll acts. A further space is to open downstairs in January with live music and comedy six nights a week.
Revellers can choose between downing shots at the bar and nestling into one of the more comfortable booths with a pizza. Against all odds, these prove to be quite a pleasure, if a somewhat guilty one: salty anchovies, smoky black olives and chunks of avocado sit atop a thin, crispy base, while the calzone contains slices of very spicy sausage.
Both appear mammoth-sized although these are the small 12” versions, great value at only £7.95 each. One can only imagine the kind of appetite needed for a full sized, 16” pizza. The pizzas are freshly made on the premises by Il Bacio, a North London-based independent pizzeria that stick to Sardinian recipes.
The cocktails, just like the venue, are robust and retro. The bourbon-based Old Fashioned is comfortingly strong; the Parma Violence, made with gin, violet liquor and a dash of lemon balances the artificial candy flavour of parma violet sweets against the gin, with a lemony undertone.
Having only been open a few months, Aces and Eights already seems to have a few regulars cosied up amongst the rock memorabilia, attracted by the strong liquor, loud music and gluttonous pizza. Good times.
Leila reviewed Aces & Eights on Thu 25 Nov 2010