As the child catcher says:
‘There are children here somewhere. I can smell them…’
Alas! We were caught by the flashing lights, mist and laughter.
Expectations of another themed restaurant to join the likes of Moniker’s Chemistry lab and Tanner & Co’s school gym is high, but rest assured, there’s none other quite like this. Welcome to The Candy Shop or… The Toy Shop Bar.
This newly opened bar/restaurant is strictly for a guestlist of the cheekiest and most playful adults in town. You’re invited to relive your childhood memories (and corrupt a few) so sit back in the swing, relax and signal the barman for some absinth wine gums and lego men shaped ice cubes to start the night.
The toys really start to spring to life after 9, crowds begin to gather around the bar ordering pitchers of:
1. For larger groups - King of the Castle or House Party, giant toy models complete with flashing lights, fumes and a few shrieking Essex boys (optional to leave on the side).
2. For smaller groups – Ralph the Robot is the cutest thing ever, we wanted to take him home.
From left to right
Slinky Margarita – Soda evaporation, pink grapefruit oils, and a lollipop.
Gee-Haw Whammy Diddle Fizz – (A long list of ingredients including…) Coconut mushroom gin, champagne reduction, duck egg white, N20 charged walnut oil and lavender flamed marshmellows.
Choose from small Sharing Plates or set menus The Toy Shop BBQ (£20 p/p) and The Toy Shop Picnic (£15 p/p). Remember sharing is caring here, you’ll be able to try more foods this way and keep the costs down.
From left to right
Stinkin Bishop Soufflé, Goat’s Cheese Lolli Pops, Braised Ham Hock
Goat’s Cheese Lolli Pops
The waitress did warn us about the potency of The Stinking Bishop Soufflé, but if you’ve ever had stinking tofu from Beijing, this one is like smelling roses. We couldn’t get enough of the sweet caramelised onions embedded in the light cheesy puff.
Red Velvet Cake Lolli Pop
Creme brûlée – A white chocolate robot sleeping on a bed of torched pop rocks, layered on top of pistachio creme and mini marshmallows
Some may say the venue is a little kitsch with the novelty of toys and disco lights, but to those who flex a high brow – we say take your sour skittles elsewhere. Yes we came with not much to our expectations, but in the end we were pleasantly surprised by the unusual mingle of ingredients in everything from their food to cocktails. A dash of pixie dust must have been added too for extra charm.
The waitress explained they are still experimenting with the menu, so from the beginning of July look out for a new weekend brunch with unlimited champagne (got your attention there). Keep checking back at The Toy Shop Bar’s Twitter and Facebook for more info.
There’ll be more to come.
If you don’t want to grow up like Peter Pan, enter The Toy Shop.
We were inspired thanks to Audley’s lovely review. Click here to read her experience.