Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Through the fridge

The Mayor of Scaredy Cat Town

Imagine a bar hidden away only a stone’s throw from the bustling city and Liverpool Street station.

A hidden gem where you need a password to enter.

Well Imagine no more as such a place exists but it is now an open secret and has become a regular drinking haunt for many.

One day ages ago a friend of mine told me of a secret bar underneath a restaurant where you have to utter specific words and then you enter through a fridge to a world of milk and honey below.

I had to find this place for myself and from the very first moment I stepped into the fridge I was hooked.

I am of course talking about the bar underneath the Breakfast Club in Artillery Lane called the
Mayor of Scaredy Cat Town.

I entered the restaurant with some friends and was approached by a curvaceous and rather lovely waitress who asked us what we wanted. I as casual as I could said; “We are here to see the Mayor”.

With those magic words we were ushered over to a large white Smeg fridge. The door opened and instead of revealing milk, groceries and yogurts there was a flight of stairs that went down below.

We stepped into the fridge and the gloom and descended. As we did the noise of laughter and clinking of drinks grew louder. Every step we took the noises grew and soon we were at a door.

The door opened and lights illuminated us where we stood.
The Smeg fridge. The entrance to a new world!
We walked in and entered the Mayor.

From that moment I have made up countless excuses to show people I know that bar. Male, female, groups and even a gang of Aussie all entered the fridge and to their delight loved the experience.

The bar itself is decked out in old wooden panels. The tables’ and chairs are odd shaped and the d├ęcor is fantastic. A large moose head stand on the wall watching out over the punters and a sign saying ‘no heavy petting’ always raises an eyebrow.

The menu even has rules about the bar. For example if you leave you don’t come back out through the fridge, you leave via the toilets. It even politely asked you to play along and pretend you have been to the loos as you leave.

The toilets themselves are a joy. The men’s upstairs are wallpapered with skydiver cartoons. Over the years speech bubbles have been added and they are all about a skydiver called Barry being gay. “Did you know Barry was gay”, “Barry tried to touch me”, “I’m Barry” etc. You have to be careful to not pee on the floor as you crane your neck giggling and reading them.

Alternatively you can use the down stairs unisex loos which are plastered with old music posters from the 80s. Many of which you giggle at now but David Essex and Wet Wet Wet somehow suit these loos.

The menu is good too. The Mayor always reminds me of Spain and the Bull Run because you can get the big litre bottle of Cruz Campo cerveza which are sold in those parts.

Cocktails galore are on offer and I recommend the ones with a little absinthe or coffee in.

Every time I have been there I have wanted to go back.

This is a bar which grabs you and wants you to return.

There are so many London bars to choose from, but with its quirkiness and ideal central location I would highly recommend this one to all.

So maybe when you are in need of a little g and t to sooth your city shot nerves. Wander down Artillery lane and ask for the Mayor!

You never know, you may become hooked like me?

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