Pop Up Underground Restaurant Review: The Pale Blue Door

By Londonist Last edited 101 months ago
Pop Up Underground Restaurant Review: The Pale Blue Door

LON-2009.09.15---door.jpg The Pale Blue Door will swing open again later this month for five more days of camp supper club food and frolics in Dalston. Artist Tony Hornecker has been hosting a pop up restaurant-cum-installation at his house this summer. It's been such a success that he's declared he'll be back from the 30th September to 4th October.

We stepped through the Pale Blue Door on bank holiday Sunday and loved the glowing candlelight, the heavy velvet drapes, the chintzy crockery as well as being served a welcome G&T by a gorgeous drag queen in an incredibly short dress. The food wasn’t gourmet but still tasty and filling. A three course meal with wine, including a roast and yummy homemade crumble, was ours for a £30 fee.

But this wasn't about the food, it was about everything else. It was about clambering up steep stairs and disappearing through trapdoors, about high ceilings and ceilings so low you have to crawl … about chickens living on the roof and a bathroom dressed in red velvet still serving as home to the inhabitant's toothbrushes. It was about the voyeurism of exploring someone else's home, in this case an artist's live/work space transformed into a wonderland.

We shared our evening with an eclectic bunch of Londoners who'd resisted the August bank holiday exodus and were looking to be fed and entertained. There were retired folk and pregnant women, as well as couples, friends and people who'd braved it alone.

It's really up to the individual how much you immerse yourself in the experience. We ate, drank and we were rewarded with glorious Tina Turner renditions from our hostess. By the time coffee was finished, we were dancing with our dining neighbours. The next morning glitter was everywhere, in places you'd never imagine, and the gin and red wine combined to produce seriously fuzzy heads. But it was worth it for a mad and wonderful night.

To book email thepalebluedoor@hotmail.co.uk or visit tonyhornecker.wordpress.com.

Written by Helen Babbs. Photo courtesy fo the Pale Blue Door.

Last Updated 16 September 2009


If i could invent a restaurant, this would be it. Like eating in a Tim Burton fantasy. Gorgeous sexy hosts and hostesses, brilliant cabaret, the most prompt service i've ever experienced. At one point a bottle of wine i asked for miraculously appeared from behind a curtain, seconds after it was ordered. Abaracadabera! Not forgetting the wonderful company of my supper companion.