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Playground, South End, Croydon

Pub added by Pub SignMan
63 South End

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Reviews (Current Rating Average: 4 of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Pub SignMan left this review about Playground

The restaurant quarter in South Croydon has undergone a minor renaissance of late with a few decent new places opening, including this fancy modern cocktail bar. The place is aiming to be an upmarket, creative cocktail bar and eatery although you have to wonder if Croydon is ready for such a venture. The bar itself is a fairly unremarkable converted shop unit with wood effect floor tiles and posh wallpaper combining to create a bright, contemporary look. A smart banquette runs down the right hand wall under a series of tessellating octagonal mirrors. Elsewhere there are standard chairs and low stools with images from Vogue magazine covers on their backs. The bar is to the rear right and has a back-lit counter and a white bar back bearing the bar's name and spirit bottles arranged in a manner that put me in mind of a chemist's shelves. The bar had a couple of bird cages on it for no apparent reason and some fancy glitter balls and light fittings hang from the walls and ceiling. There are a few modern art prints dotted around and easy listening music played throughout our early evening visit.
Beer options are limited to bottled Peroni, Ashai, Brewdog and Brooklyn beers, each around £4.50. However, it is the cocktails that steal the show, each using creative ingredient combinations and supplemented with small surprises such as chocolate discs, liquorice coins and popping candy. The drinks we sampled were excellent, but they come at a price, with most somewhere around the £10 mark. Standard cocktails are not listed in the menu, but the staff will make well known cocktails if you ask. Food is also available, albeit from a rather limited menu, with sliders prominent and lots of light bites and nibbles. The staff were a bit distant and very slow to serve us when we arrived.
This is the sort of place that sits well in certain parts of London, with the rise of this type of cocktail bar seemingly taking the capital by storm in recent years, but whether it works in Croydon, I'm not so sure. The place is modest in size, so this may be to its advantage as it tries to build a customer base. I enjoyed my drink but cannot imagine paying such prices for cocktails on a regular basis. And from a beer drinker's perspective, there really is very little to recommend.

On 6th November 2015 - rating: 4
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