On The Down Low

Tiny spaces by night

We’ve covered 2018 art’s scale-up to supersize, but now we’re looking at taking our nightlife miniature. It’s not as strange as it sounds. By day, arts go experiential; for nightlife, downsize the scale, not the vibes.

If you’re fond of Five Miles for a smaller club experience and sparse interiors, Hackney’s The Glove That Fits will be on the money too. The new venue from Hackney Wick’s Shapes, TGTF opens as a cafe by day, with an 80-capacity basement club below for nightime, already installed with a d&b audiotechnik system to bring some serious sound credentials to the intimate space. Operations manager Dyllan Zain says it’s the kind of space DJs will be able to play the tracks they don’t usually get to – head there this Friday for Debora Ipekel (Sounds of the Universe) and Donna Leake (Brilliant Corners).

The Black Hamburg’s late-night two-sandwich offering takes concise menus to a new (appealing) extreme, but we’re also won over by Titu. Just opened in Mayfair’s cobbled Shepherd’s Market, owner Jeff Tyler brings head chef nous from Novikov, but he’s scaled it down to just 15 seats, where dinner means seasonal, handmade gyoza, soft shell crab salad and one dessert: a tonka bean beignet. Short, sweet and to the point – #UJLoves.

Looking for a follow-up to Bar Three’s succinct charms? Head up the road to TT Liquor, housed in a converted police station. Downstairs, browse through the liquor store and drinks parlour, but don’t miss TT Cinema either, now vying for the accolade of one of London’s smallest cinemas with just 52 seats. Each month they pair a cult classic with a favourite cocktail – don’t miss Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas on 20th May – we’re guessing the drinks will be as absurd as the film.

It’s no coincidence these diminutive spots stay under the radar for longer – all the better for partying, dining or ordering another round of cocktails. Is this seat taken?


Originally published on
6th April 2018


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