I think I’ve just found my new favourite place. You know when you leave somewhere and immediately think about when you can next go back? This place is a hidden gem. The Toy Shop lies in Putney Bridge, South-West London which is located in the Borough of Wandsworth. Only one stop away from Parson’s Green on the district line where I currently live I didn’t really have an excuse not to visit.
I first read about The Toy Shop in The Nudge’s weekly newsletter where they describe stepping into The Toy Shop bar like stepping into a life sized game of Candy Crush (or for any of you oldies, think Charlie and the Chocolate Factory). An intoxicating mix of tactile velvet chairs, eye-popping décor and deliciously inventive cocktails the bar draws on everything you liked as a child but with an adult twist.
A welcome antidote to uptight bars, here you’re paying premium prices but for the full package. For starters, check out this for a Cocktail menu. Unique names like Play-doh punch, Tropical sizzle diddle and Silly putter cobbler.
I went for the Clubland a la Polly Pocket which consisted of Warmwood vodka sweets infused part homemade cherry alcoholic cordial marinated and reinvested cherries lemon sherbet triple chip smoked chocolate cigarettes (£9.00). Yep, all that in one glass. Although we say glass… I would describe it was more of a vase. Check this out for cocktail competition.
Presented in a Martini glass with no stem, it rested in a glass bowl with crushed ice, a packet of popping candy, a chocolate cigarette and a dried rose inside it. Clubland a la Polly Pocket tasted of a summer fruits pudding, it was thick, juicy and fragrant. You could tell that so much thought went into it’s concoction, it tasted homemade.
This evenings dining partner chose the Play-doh watermelon punch, The Toy Shop blend rum watermelon citrus crema+elderflower raspberry marshmallow (£8.50). Presented in a white glass and full to the brim of crushed ice, red currants, blueberries and a toasted marshmallow rested on the top. It was super refreshing – the flavours were light and fruity.
As we sipped on our cocktails we began to get a little bit peckish. In a very indecisive mood we asked the waitress what we should order if we’re “not that hungry, but fancy something to share”. She suggested the we order a couple of starters between us – so we did just that plus a portion of chips.
We chose the Cornish Crab Croquettes with aioli pipettes (£6.75) and the Myers rum Inflused Loin of Pork served with pineapple and mango salsa (£6.50) alongside a potion of Hand Cut Chips (£3.50). Like everything you see at the Toy Shop our food arrived at our table awesomely presented. On a large wooden board, striped pink and blue sweetie bags rested on coloured china tiles holding the chips and crab croquettes. A miniature frying pan held the triangular pork loins and plastic test tubes contained the aioli sauce.
As far as tastes go – I can’t say I was blown away with anything we ate. If you’re a regular reader you’ll know I love crab, but apparently I do not like crab croquettes. They were just a bit mushy and warm – stodgy would be a good word to describe them. In fact I’m even scrunching up my nose thinking about them. Not for me. That said, the aioli pipettes were fun! The pork loins were also a bit “average”. The fruit and thin chips were nice but the meat was just a bit chewy. On the plus side, the chips were yummy, there was loads of them and they were thick, full of potato and nice and hot.
Going from food talk to toilet talk is rarely an okay thing to do but on this occasion you’ll have to excuse the brevity. BECAUSE the toilets at The Toy Shop are so COOL. I cant speak on behalf of the men’s loos but if you were a girlie girl when you were younger you’ll love the Barbie doll themed bathroom. Bright pink sparkly tiles, pink toilet seats, sinks and hand drier against a granite background. It was one of my favourite ‘London Loos’ so far.
After a wonderfully playful evening at The Toy Shop I was sad to leave, but alas it was a school night so my bunk bed was calling. (That was not a joke, in my current flat-share I sleep in a bunk bed). I will certainly be returning again with more friends. Personally I’m going to stick to making my way through the cocktail list rather than attempting to taste what foods on offer. With the bill we received a white chocolate and raspberry (or strawberry?) lego chocolate – a cute touch to a unique experience.
ADDRESS: 32 Putney High Street, London, SW15 1SQ
CONTACT: T: 0208 704 1188 or E: email@example.com
OPENING TIMES: Mon – Thurs: 5pm-11pm, Fri: 5pm-2am, Sat: 11am-2am, Sun: 12pm-10:30pm