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The Russian Bar (Bar, Club)

Picture of The Russian Bar in Hackney, London

267 Kingsland Road, Hackney, London, E2 8AS
Cuisine: [Other/Unclassified]
Tel: Not on file | Email to The Russian Bar | Transport: Old Street | Write review

The Russian Bar Review

Halfway up Kingsland Road The Russian Bar stands alone, a late-night drinking establishment in the no man’s land between Shoreditch and Dalston. A stone’s throw from the heaving bars and clubs of Hoxton, it’s one of the few watering holes that can offer entertainment in the seriously wee hours.

Its black façade and white Slavic writing strike an odd note in the dingy grey of Hackney’s main traffic artery; one of those places you’ve walked past sober and thought, ‘what a weird place for a bar’. In fact, as soon as we rocked up, I and my companion simultaneously remembered finishing a rather inebriated night at this place not so long ago.

We arrived at eleven to a packed Saturday night in the upstairs bar. While I was a bit miffed at being ID’d, you have to respect the security staff keeping our clubs under-eighteen-free. The downstairs bar opens around eleven for the overflow.

The music is generally deafening although this did mean there was already a healthy number of dancers filling the floor. The decor is summed up in a single word – mirrors. It gives an unnerving sense of space in what is really quite a small room. Downstairs continues the reflective theme with mirrored walls all round and even louder music bouncing between them.

Drinks are averagely priced at around £3.50 for a single and mixer. There is also wine and beer available which is good because if you’re not drunk or on your way, The Russian Bar has little to offer. There are some interesting projections on one wall and speaking at top volume you might be able to conduct a conversation while sinking into one of the surprisingly comfy black leather arm sofas, but on the whole this is a place for late night partying.

The clientele are a mixed bunch - many of those already pulling shapes are lads in their late twenties - but the bar seems to pull in people from all walks of life. The music is eclectic to the point of epileptic. Everything from house to cabaret seems to get a look-in and in an attempt to have something for everyone, the upstairs and downstairs tunes rarely bear a semblance of similarity. This could be a good thing if you just want a boogie but less of a good thing if your music tastes are more defined and you want to know what you’re going to get.

Ultimately, if you’ve been kicked out of Hoxton, still feel like partying and are happy to pay the entry fee (£5), The Russian Bar offers an option in this part of town. However, if you want to talk, meet people (who will remember you the next day) and have any respect for your ear drums, it’s not your kind of place. Fine if you’re in the mood already but it’s unlikely to sway you.
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Customer Reviews for The Russian Bar

Average (based on 1 votes): 1 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 The Russian Bar.

“Not a bad bar when you're drunk. had a good old dance there this weekend but wouldn't recommend it as your first stop!”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Kate, London (8 years 8 months 5 days ago)

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Venue ID: 19981

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Loved

"Hi guys, I come here with my friends and have very good time. I like your place very much and is very good times. I come back when I can soon. Thank you very much." Which venue is this?

Hated

"Dreadful pub, run by people who have zero idea about hospitality or running a pub. Upon arrival we sat in the back garden that only had one other table occupied , when we tried to order off the lunch menu..." Which venue is this?

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