With dim lighting that makes everyone look good, this East Village-style speakeasy does good food and a bourbon range that’d make Bukowski proud.
While other bars blazon their name across the building and try to entice you in with A-boards, Chinaski's relies on reputation alone. Those who venture past the nameless blue frontage are rewarded with a dimly lit, East Village style speakeasy with stylish artworks and a glass gantry stacked with bourbon. Chinaski's menu is a compact affair but choosing is a challenge. Small plates include crispy chicken thighs served with a satay sauce that packs a pleasingly surprising spice, and a generous oven baked camembert that's subtly sweetened with honey and rosemary. Pub classics have a place on the menu but there always a flourish of originality. A pizza topped with mushrooms, feta and harissa cauliflower sounds bizarre but it delicious. Framed Charles Bukowski poems in the toilets, an entirely separate vegan menu and a hidden beer garden all add to the case for not needing a sign to pull in the crowds.
- Provides: Vegetarian options (at least ¼ main courses), Children's portions, Children's high chairs, Wheelchair access, Outdoor tables, Free wi-fi
- Music on stereo: An eclectic mix of funk, house, rock and disco
- Live entertainment: DJs Fri/ Sat from 9pm; Sun 5-10pm
- Capacity: 60 (20 inc beer garden)
- Largest group: 16
- Open since: 2006
- Number of wines sold by the glass: 11
- House wine: £17.95 per bottle
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