Tequila: it makes you happy, and sometimes it makes you very, very sick. Still, if you don’t try all 80 of Azulito’s tequilas in one sitting then you should enjoy what is a funky little bar.
Ever since Mexican restaurant Wahaca opened in Soho there has been a permanent queue of people at the door. Now with the opening of Azulito Bar on their lower ground floor this looks set to only worsen. As with the restaurant, the borderline-schizophrenic décor of Azulito hits you like a tonne of pretty bricks and is enough to induce an instant migraine even before touching the tequila. Yellows, reds, oranges, greens and blues mix in a kaleidoscope of colour, heightened by a patterned tiled floor that is sure to leave you dizzy if you stare at it for too long. The bar has a tropical beach flavour to it with an unpolished appeal and the furniture is just as nuts as the colour scheme as hanging wicker chairs mix with chunky red feature high stools and tables, and more subdued simple wooden tables are paired with brightly coloured leather-topped low stools. It’s haphazard, certainly, but it’s hard not to smile when drinking here (although that may just be the tequila talking).
As with Wahaca, Azulito is almost always busy with an upbeat, borderline manic, ambience that hangs over the whole venue. However, as with the restaurant, the bar is a smoothly-run operation and the wait for drinks is surprisingly short even when people are clamouring to the bar. The clientele are a mix of local office workers, shoppers and tourists but, to the bar’s credit, this avoids feeling like just another tacky tourist hotspot.
Tequila. Lots of. Eighty of the bad boys, in fact. However, where Azulito impresses is with their policy on the agave content of their tequilas – every single one of their stocked bottles has 100% agave content, which means it’s as pure as it gets. And, best of all, you won’t have to pay through the nose to enjoy it with shots starting at just over £3 (rising to just short of £50 a shot for the premium bottles). And don’t just throw these shots back, they are designed to be savoured – so much so, each tequila comes with its own set of tasting notes.
If shots aren’t your thing then they also do a great selection of cocktails, with the majority coming in at the £6.50 mark – very competitive for central London. Of course, the king of these is the margarita, complete with a tangy salt rim that will have you making puckered faces with every sip.
The Last Word
Azulito is already thriving in one of London’s most competitive areas for bars. Get the lime and salt ready, this party is about to get started!