We're in bloody London, mates! Scott and I are here on our way to see our good friends Clare and Vince get married in Scotland! Last night, we experienced the amazing circus that is the Absolut Icebar. It was kind of tricky to find in London's tangle of alleyways, but completely worth it. Let me see if I can do it justice.

First of all, before even going inside, we debated whether or not it was worth the steep cover price. We both turned to the French hostess at the front desk and asked her skeptically,

Scott: "I mean Jeanette, really, how cool is it?"

Me: "Yeah, Jeanette, is it really cool or just kinda cool?"

Jeanette: (dead serious) "No, no! Eet eez very cool. Zey keep eet at about -5 degrees."

We were like, "That does sound cool." In any case, once your cover's paid, you walk into what looks like a normal, dark swanky London bar. What's different is that just off to the right stand two greeters in giant Prussian fur hats holding huge hooded fur-lined blue cloaks with which they will in fact drape you. It was very funny and awkward. How often does a staff member just try to dress you? Like just wind a scarf around your neck or something? I found it hilarious.

In any case, two people throw giant blue ponchos over you, and then make sure to point out the gloves that are handily attached to your cloak. The gloves make it a lot easier to hold your glass, which, of course, is hewn from a solid block of ice. The cover price actually includes one free Absolut drink, which was pretty nice.

Once you are all bundled up, North Pole expedition-style, you get to duck through a series of heavy fur curtains, not unlike those kids in The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe , and emerge on the other side into what looks like an Inuit bachelor party. It's insane. The walls are made of pure snow, but the floor, thank goodness, is grippy, textured stainless steel. There are giant ice blocks covered in fur skins to sit on, ice tables to set your drink on, and one giant intricately-carved ice chair which now keeps reminding me of The Dark Crystal. Even the bar itself, is indeed one giant block of ice. I guess they get all this ice direcly from a famous river in Sweden, which, let's be honest, could be a total fucking lie.

Who's going to verify that? I'd believe anything the Icebarbarians told me after a few lovely cocktails though, I think. It was packed and incredibly entertaining, but after a few drinks, our noses were cold and we were ready to return to the world of feeling your limbs. All in all, an amazing experience and a definite teaser for a stay in an ice hotel! I can't help but wonder if, as a rival, the Aftershock Firebar would ever make it. It could be a giant oven with hot metal cups full of searing Aftershock and furniture that burns you. Probably not as cool.


DragonTeaser said...

Yo. V.I.P. Kick It.

Buff Tan Honky said...

I like how they've made something that would normally seem miserable appear trendy, such as relaxing in a freezer. How about a bar that is kept at a steady 140 degrees? The doormen could hand each person entering one of those little waterbottle fans so you can cool yourself just enough to stay conscious.