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Kona Kai (Bar)

Picture of Kona Kai in Fulham, London

515 Fulham Road, Fulham, London, SW6 1HD
Cuisine: [Other/Unclassified]
Tel: 020 7385 9991 | Email to Kona Kai | Transport: Fulham Broadway | Write review

Kona Kai Review

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Best for: Tasty cocktails with a tropical twist.

Great: Bar service that will never let you down.

My time is precious to me and I don’t like to waste it. The cycle of life is short. You should never let your time go by with people who are no good to you. Nor should you do things you don’t want to do. Unfortunately, I’ve had to learn the hard way; especially the time I dated all those losers. But not anymore. Enjoying a night out with friends could hardly count as time wasted, especially at Kona Kai. Fluid Friends, I present you with the life cycle of a night at Kona Kai: from its birth to its death.

19.00 Fulham Broadway Underground Station (BIRTH): Meet friend.

19.03 Kona Kai Restaurant and Bar (TODDLER): Hop, skip and jump from the station. You’ll never be cold, wet or worn out trying to find this place and you won’t have to be smart either (or able to read a map). The bar inside is absolutely gorgeous. Most of the walls and ceilings look like wicker, cane and weaves. In the centre above the bar is a feature canoe, but I don’t want to paddle away. It’s great to feel far removed from grey-slabbed London in this little tropical haven.

19.10 Kia Ora, Hurricane Season and Drunken Apricot (SCHOOL): “Hello” in my native New Zealand, but, on this occasion, Kia Ora is a scrumptious kiwifruit cocktail. The Hurricane Season, instead of being an assault on the Pacific, is a pleasurable alcoholic concoction. And no, Drunken Apricot was not either one of our boyfriends (but it could have been like the time I dated all those losers).

19.30 Talkathon (UNIVERSITY): Still not ready to order. We just cant stop our chatter. The service never lulls though. The manager and team at this bar work like one coherent network of neurons. If only that was the case for the opposite sex (which is all we can talk about today): who recently got engaged; who got married; who is popping out rugrats; when’s our time gonna come? Analysis of every little word and action presented by our boyfriends is taking up our time tonight - we haven’t even looked at the menu - but how long will the men take to deliver the goods? If only they could follow Kona Kai’s fine example of service. Ask us what we want regularly and deliver; no time wasted.

19.40 Starters (CAREER): Order in! Order out! Where does the time go? Could they read our minds? It’s like they already know we want to order crispy prawns and a tasting plate. Admittedly, the staff do make recommendations. Good to know they’re straight to the point, organised and efficient. Why can’t our men already know what we want, too?

19.50 Mains (MARRIAGE) ####PAUSE####: How quickly the time flies, and I don’t buy the ‘when you’re having fun’ part. That’s a silly cover up for the truth; like being ‘big boned’ when you’re actually just ‘downright fat’. Tonight, though, we are having fun anyway. We hurry down our yummy olives and bread to order our mains. Upon staff recommendations again, we have New Zealand mussels (Kona Kai has got a South Pacific theme, after all) and camembert fondue. I don’t know why camembert fondue is a main course, but it must have seemed like a good idea at the time. Just like when I dated all those losers. Truly unsubstantial, bread dipped into melted cheese is not what I call a main course. My recommendation for Kona Kai: put the camembert fondue on your starters menu.

20.15 Dessert (KIDS): “I don’t know what I want” is not the answer. With a choice of only two, the answer is easy: one of each please. Rather too crispy on the outside, and lacking in chocolatey richness, the chocolate brownie is sadly not what it should be. Just like the time I dated all those losers.

20.30 Barman Special (RETIREMENT): I love that old Granadilla taste. Here in the UK it’s called passionfruit, but for me it feels wrong to say that. A Granadilla cocktail mixed with something - as long as it’s made with love then that’s all I need - and since the manager specifically recommended it, I ask the barman for his special. I’m satisfied. Not like the time I dated all those losers. While sipping observantly on my Granadilla special, I notice young little Barbie Dolls parading themselves around and giggling happily with their Kens. Later, I compliment one on her top (that seemed to be missing its matching trousers). “It’s from Lipsy,” she says. Is she actually speaking to me? I’m not sure since she cant possibly turn her eyes away from her beautiful reflection in the girls’ mirror. Or is it that her fake eyelashes are so heavy it’s too much hard work to move her eyes when someone other than Ken speaks to her? Did I used to be like that? I wonder.

20.45 Goodbye Kona Kai (DEATH): While happy Barbies and Kens are having a good time and waiting in excited anticipation for the live DJ to start, we are rushed off our table as the next customers arrive. Thanks are exchanged, coats on, bags in hand, and off we toddle back to the station. Although our time at Kona Kai is short, it is jam packed with typical bar-food eats and some not-so-bad tropical cocktails. And you couldn’t ask for better, more friendly service. And with a visit to Kona Kai, you won’t either. Nothing is ever “too soon” for Kona Kai. more

Customer Reviews for Kona Kai

Average (based on 4 votes): 4 Atmosphere: Value: Quality:

The following customer reviews are not endorsed by Fluid London and are simply those of users who wish to publish their independent experiences of Kona Kai.

“I don't know what the big fuss is about this place! Everyone I went with seemed to love the themed decor. Personally, I think it is really tacky! This place is not really a 'restaurant'. The menu isn't great and is only there for people who need to eat. I wouldn't recommend going here for dinner.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Julie, Clapham (9 years 3 months 12 days ago)

“Wonderful service by the staff...really enjoyed myself....The different coloured straws were highly amusing but not to distracting from the food which was superb...Will come again and again...Vivienne”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Viv Dembele, London/Putney (9 years 9 months 27 days ago)

“I really can’t believe the transformation this place has undergone. It used to be a very run down drinking hole for the hardcore Chelsea fans on match days, which was the only time it was really busy, every other week during football season. It is now a cool cocktail bar, with a decor Mahiki style, flamboyant drinks, dance floor and very nice atmosphere. They even have a giant canoe hanging off the hut roof and sharing cocktails served in a flaming boat. Definitely worth a visit....Jess”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Jessica, London (9 years 10 months 1 days ago)

Show all user reviews for Kona Kai

“I can’t believe how much this place has changed. It has gone from being a grubby and very run down place, which was really busy only on Chelsea match days, when the hard core Chelsea fans would go for a piss up prior to matches, to being a niche place, very beautiful décor and amazing cocktails. There is even a big canoe hanging from the hut roof……definitely recommend it….”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Francesca, London (9 years 10 months 2 days ago)

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Venue ID: 22632

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