455 Hackney Road, E29DY, London
Ever fancied cooking some cocktails in an RV? ABQ London is bringing a once in a life time Breaking Bad themed experience. Let’s get cooking, bitches!
ABQ London first opened in 2015, after great success it then moved to Paris for a few months over the summer and has now returned back to London. As you turn left at Cambridge Heath overground station you will find, just a little up the road, what seems to be an abandoned RV van and a double decker bus, with no sign or anything else to distinguish it.
As we approach the RV door we are greeted with a sign saying ‘I am the one who knocks’, so we waited patiently for a few minutes. Not long after the RV door swings open and we are greeted by a friendly guy in a yellow suit saying, ‘Welcome bitches!’. Lubricated with two mojitos prior, and forgetting where I am for a second, I look up at him like who are you calling a bitch?! But not to worry, I quickly come back to my senses (‘bitch’ is Jesse’s favourite word).
As we walk up the stairs we are shown to our table at the front of the RV and we are immediately surprised by the size of it; it looks so much bigger inside. We are also completely mesmerised by the huge neon Walter White face lighting the back of the RV. As we take it all in, we are handed a yellow full body suit to put on. I have to say yellow is definitively not my colour but I embrace the experience nonetheless. As people start turning up we head to our table and sit on these hard barrels with a small pillow on top. It seems like a great idea at first but those barrels are guaranteed to numb your ass by the end of the night.
As we shuffle onto our seats, trying to get comfortable and trying out the gas masks by our table, our first drink arrives. We are given a mojito in a science flask with a plastic syringe full of a blue liquid. Not being able to contain my excitement, I inject this blue liquid straight into my drink. This blue liquid changes my mojito into what I can only describe as a very sweet blue slushy. Consequently the drink is almost unbearably sweet. I make the mistakes so that you don’t.
The next two drinks we get to ‘cook’ ourselves. Choosing from a variety of 6 different drinks, I decide to go for a I Fucked Ted first. I chose this one not because of the name…OK, maybe it was because of the name. Our host hands us instructions depending on the drink we choose and hands us the ingredients. This cocoa infused molecular Manhattan, consists of rye whisky, vermouth, tea noir, dark chocolate and a N02 Bullet. All ingredients go inside a cocktail siphon, the bullet inside the ‘bullet holder’, you give it a good shake, wait 5 minutes and BAM! I am advised by our host to give the siphon a good fingering…I follow as instructed. The drink is really tasty and very alcoholic, a mixture of ice tea infused with chocolate.
For my second drink I go for a Granite State: containing gin, avocado, celery, apple martini, chili, ginger and not to forget another bullet. I follow the same process as before and knock this one back too. At first I am skeptical about this drink because it sounds like I was ordering a salad, however, I am pleasantly surprised. It is much sweeter than the one before but it has hints of bitterness and all the ingredients compliment each other perfectly. All around me other people are mixing their cocktails with bubble machines and dry ice creating steam.
At the very reasonable price of £30 per ticket, each ticket gives you a 2 hour slot, 3 drinks and a great atmosphere with Latin music, Hip-Hop and Breaking Bad’s own soundtrack. If you would rather not, ‘cook’ with strangers, this bar is also available for private hire. I would definitively come back again but perhaps next time it would be nice to hire the whole van and go with a larger group of friends.
Speaking to one of our hosts, this pop up is meant to stay put through to the new year, but get your tickets soon in case they decide to drive off to another location. Yeah, bitch!