Thursday, 1 July 2010

The Garden of Eager

By James Baxter.

So the vogue for all things pop-up continues into its second summer as the ‘temporary is cool’ mantra inspires the next generation of bars, restaurants, clubs, theatres (and literally any other scene of social interaction) to experiment with new ideas.

Whilst the pop-up phenomenon has now become so prevalent that we are fast- approaching bandwagon territory, the most successful launches this summer are keeping things quirky, al fresco, and delivering a twist on an existing space as opposed to re-inventing the wheel.

The Garden of Eager’s pop-up at East London’s hip Brickhouse Supperclub ticks all these boxes with its outdoor terrace transformed into a weird and wonderful Edenic escape complete with trees sprouting gigantic cartoon-sized fruit, grass growing on walls and an array of forbidden fruit-inspired cocktails created by the Brickhouse’s master mixologists.

The Apple Bite – a devilish mix of vodka, cinnamon and apple juice -  was particularly well received as was the Serpentini, an apple and mango-based cocktail with a kick. In keeping with the Brickhouse’s reputation for delivering superb live entertainment, the garden includes a roof-top stage so that guests can enjoy both the great summer weather and be entertained by an array of cabaret, circus, burlesque and comic acts. And in a venue known for its cool 30s inspired supperclub décor, it is refreshing to see it is not taking itself too seriously with guests guided to the garden by staff dressed as giant fruit.

Those looking to get in on the act can even make use of a fancy dress box where guests can don fruity garland necklaces, Hawaiian shirts and funky shades. So, in a city besieged by the good, the bad and the ugly of pop-up culture, the Brickhouse’s Garden of Eager stands out as a confident and quirky exponent of innovative summer fun. Get down there while it lasts.

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