An edited version of this review appeared in MyVillage.com…
Proud Camden launched a new burlesque dinner this July and press night was a playful cheeky affair.
Upon arrival we were greeted by jugglers who claimed hazy lighting was wreaking havoc on their dexterity and indeed the twinkling atmosphere did have a touch of the disorienting. Gymnasts spun above our heads as we made our way to the table enjoying Showgirl cocktails that I wholeheartedly recommend to fans of strawberry-based beverages.
The space echoes its history as a 200 year old Grade II listed horse hospital: it’s functional. Wooden floors, a peaked roof with exposed beams – on which acrobats twirl – and long communal tables and benches. Sparkly lights and chandeliers enhance the rustic atmosphere with a soft otherworldly glow.
The canapés were outstanding and filling; luscious juicy mini-burgers with homemade salsa, BBQ ribs that were a gooey, saucy, falling off the bone triumph, mini chicken Caesar salad bites, and mushroom & brie nibbles. The canapés were so delicious that it was a surprise to our table that the mains were so uninspiring. I had the lacklustre chilli served on parboiled rice while my companions had the fish and chips – generous but the batter lacked crispness – and the pie that they rated as acceptable. Serving a packed house from a tiny kitchen is tough at the best of times yet it is unfortunate that these dishes were so mediocre compared to the delights of the pre-dinner feast.
The house wines served throughout the evening are a decent stride above serviceable and a great accompaniment to any meal.
The show featuring performers Kiki Kaboom & Beatrix Von Bourbon is a sexy, light-hearted affair with a fine helping of saucy nudity. Each girl brought frivolous cheek complementing one another in terms of style and audience engagement. They deserve full praise as two of the finer London cabaret acts I’ve enjoyed over the last year.
A top end 3-course menu is £33 while a discount 2-course dinner is on offer at £18. All diners get free entry to club nights – that alone can cost as much as £10.
Despite an average main course we thoroughly enjoyed our evening. A fair price-point, unique style and fantastic entertainment make Proud Camden’s Burlesque a recommended night out.
The Horse Hospital
Stables Market, Chalk Farm Road
London, UK NW1 8AH