Monday, January 12, 2009

BOB BOB RICARD...

Curious name, curious place. Someone said that new-ish restaurant/bar in Soho, Bob Bob Ricard is like the waiting room of the Orient Express. (I would add, on acid.)

Taking over the previous site of ad agency honcho hang out Circus, the re-design of the place is instantly recognisable as the work of David Collins who designed The Wolseley, The Connaught Bar, Claridge's Bar, The Berkeley Blue Bar, Nobu Berkeley etc etc - to name just a few in London.

BBR looks bizarrely retro, but it's custom made and brand spanking new - a Collins speciality. Red wallpaper with a veiny white print, juxtaposed with sapphire blue wallpaper with a sort of agate circle print, antique looking mirror squares, turquoise leather booths, a lot of cubist brass fittings everywhere - and a "champagne button" at every booth. So much going on it's hard to describe or remember it all. Oh yes, marble too.

We sat at the bar where the poor barman had been made to wear a pastel pink tuxedo jacket, as had all the other male staff (females wore turquoise). He actually looked embarrassed. Everything was so opulent that it felt quite eerie to sit at the bar and drink ten quid cocktails while discussing the recession.


Needless to say we were almost the only people in there so I felt a little conspicuous taking photos. I managed to snap one of my drink - can't remember what it was but the glass was tiny and they seemed to be strictly rationing the amount of nuts given out. I don't think it'll be enough to recoup all the money they spent on the fixtures and fittings somehow. Maybe they could try to get a refund on those pink tuxedos. It's not their fault, it's really a lovely place that was very obviously planned in detail before boom turned to bust.

EDIT: [ A button that called a waiter would have been useful; a button that called the waiter a t*** would have been better; a button that severely electrocuted the chef would have been amusing. But perhaps the most sensible and useful would have been a button that called Domino’s Pizza. This restaurant is the last turkey standing. ] - A.A. Gill and I are so in sync.

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

oh i just felt uncomfortable reading that....(although you really know how to set the "tone"..;)
nancy

Bombay Beauty said...

Even in a recession one needs a little pick-me-up, so why not a tenner for a drink? In NY, things have calmed a little, but I'm glad to see London still going strong... BB

Lola Is Beauty said...

BB: Well, it's my subjective opinion - not saying we should all be sitting in sawdust floored bars drinking moonshine out of brown paper bags! but - opening such an over the top ostentatious place = bad timing/no customers. I felt like I was on the Titanic as it sunk.

Anonymous said...

"I felt like I was on the Titanic as it sunk."
... don't we all?
Sorry, but that's what exactly what I think, the Western civilization is the Titanic, and you might as well have some fun while you sink.
:)
xxx
Mia

Patricia Villablanca said...

I laughed when u said it felt like they were rationing their nuts.

Maggie May said...

ah i found your blog because my daughter is Lola, age six. :) i enjoy all your posts and am in love with all things French...

lottie said...

i got that same titanic feeling when i read aa gill's review of bbr in the times online... he was none too thrilled with the pink tuxedos either.

Lola Is Beauty said...

Ha - just went off and read AA's account. He's my hero: "it tasted of bottom."

lottie said...

yes, ha! he's the man. also 'a button that called domino's pizza'. ha.