Garlic and Shots information

The infamous Garlic and Shots offers more garlic than you can shake a very large vampire at. All of their dishes are cooked using plenty of garlic and at the bar they have a massive 101 variety of shots available for your enjoyment.

Ranked #709 of 5241 restaurants in London

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Garlic and Shots reviews

By Michael S.

As a connoisseur of harder rock and heavier metal, Garlic and Shots is like a beacon of hope in Soho - allbeit a dark one. I frequent G&S as often as I can because the vibe is unique and the music is top class.

By Anon N.

Nicely themed bar with a cool menu and array of drinks, but the service was slow, the food was bad and both the waitress and manager were completely rude throughout the whole time we spent there and then told us to leave and not come back when we did not wish to pay the optional complimentary service charge. Not worth the visit for what is ultimately a novelty venue. Plenty of other places to visit nearby which cater to the same rock/goth/metal crowd.

By Viktor O.

Was there last weekend. To me i liked the music, the food and the atmosphere in the restaurant. It took I while for the food to arrive but it taster good. There isn't anything like it in london, would definitely recomend for a one night thing. After eating we went down to the vampire bar and took a couple of shots, there are 101 different to choose from.

By Kat T.

I visited Garlic & Shots last night with some friends, to introduce them to the “Bloodshot” – a shot that tastes like a blended garlic-infused pizza. Sounds weird, tastes rotten, but its still an experience. However, the whole experience was completely ruined by probably the rudest person I've met in my 18 months in London – horribly rude barman downstairs who kept shouting at us to hurry up and choose a drink – we were looking at the menu of over 75 (garlic-based) drinks, but he was so rude and wouldn't let us choose one, so we soon gave up. However, when we went upstairs and wanted to speak to the manager to give him feedback on how rude the barman was – the manager was even WORSE. He was absolutely awful, left us feeling embarrassed and upset, shouted at us repeatedly he was so rude and really put a dampener on our night. I'm so disappointed I let this happen – and I wouldn't recommend this place to anyone, after the foul service we got.

By G U.

I should have known better when a "restaurant" is empty on Saturday night. Drinks took forever to arrive, food never did so was cancelled after 45 minutes! Don't worry about accidentally coming in here as I'm sure in a few weeks it won't exist at all.

By Emma B.

Initially nervous about this venue given the 'Marmite' distribution of review scores, and the surly "why are you booking? we seat 200, and it's Sunday" I received on the phone. However, my fears were completely dispelled from the minute I walked in the door. We only saw the front room, but the restaurant has an atmosphere of genuine quirk - a refreshing change from the "LOL we wrote about how our products are full of good things in children's handwriting" attitude that seems to be the current fashion. The music was great, and played at exactly the right volume - a feat rarely achieved. The food was well presented, unique, piping hot and flavoursome. The service was prompt and inoffensive. We didn't get asked how our food was, but then, we were clearly enjoying it. A far superior service experience to being asked eight times over (something which happened during a recent trip to another Soho restaurant). If your idea of a good restaurant consists of polite and bland music, service, and food, then go to Nando's. If you fancy a genuinely different and exciting experience, with fantastic food, then come here. Just don't book too many social appointments for the following day.

By V P.

Quirky but questionable idea which made us want to try the restaurant as it differs from our usual fare. Having been almost refused a table due to having 'not made a reservation' we were shown into the garden where there were some free tables. Ultimately we chose to go back into the main front dining room when a table suddenly became available - although the restaurant was by no means packed from around 20.00 to 22.00 on a Saturday night when we went. Waiters friendly albeit slow; we had to wait around 40 minutes for our meal. Mine (the pasta noodles) was a satisfying main and the dessert - garlic chocolate truffles - was excellent. My boyfriend chose the XXX hot chilli burger that, as a chilli aficionado, he was looking forward to. However, our whole experience was marred by the fact that, en route home, he started to complain of acute stomach problems. At home, he spent the whole night vomiting and feeling sick, and although starting to recover the next morning, was still weak and tired for the rest of the day. I called the restaurant, concerned about my boyfriend's food poisoning, and Tony Olsen, the owner, flatly denied it. I was surprised by his firm attitude that his restaurant had nothing to do with it - even to the point of questioning my reliability. He kept insisting that he had probably had some seafood or something from another establishment (this was not the case). As a restaurant owner I call into question his integrity when dealing with a serious complaint such as this. Initially offering compensation, he then retracted this offer and said he didn't believe us and would take the matter no further without evidence (!). He persisted in his line that he had had nothing to do with it, and that anyway he had no idea what to do next. We love eating out, especially in Soho, and all in all it has to be said that we had, in each others' company, quite a nice evening out of it. So it is not compensation we are after. It is an apology

By Jennifer B.

Went here last night as for once in my life I wanted to try something different along with the other half. here goes the review: Food - Really different and the menu is quite quirky. although, be warned with no mention on the menu i ordered garlic burger to be safe - everything from the bread to the meat had chilli in it. But you couldn't fault the food and i am just picky. The plates were cool silver trays, funky presentation. Lovely side salads etc. My boyfriend had the ribs and it was massive and tasty. We saw people ordering garlic bread and no lie it was like half a fresh loaf in garlic oil. But - again it was soaked with chilli's so if you don't like don't order. Service & Restaurant - When you walk in it can be quite scary if your a newby. There were regulars floating in for the bar which the staff were comfortable with but with newbies they were quite quiet and it felt like a weird atmosphere. The place is dark and music rock but different. The staff I don't think could understand much english or they just couldn't be bothered to listen to us. It was raining last night and bit chilly and they had the door wide open with people sitting there freezing. When we asked them to close it, or when we asked for anything the staff just stared at us for a few seconds then made you feel like they are doing you a favour. Really uncomfortable when you had to speak with them. All in all - a strange night. Ending was totally ruined though. We decided to give a little less than the optional service charge. When we left - the waitress confronted us and asked why we hadn't paid recommended service charge! We had about a 5 minute confrontation where we had to tell her repeatedly her service was fine but we paid what we felt they deserved. In the end, she said she hoped we realised the money given was for her. Im still speechless...wouldn't really recommend. Not until they sort their attitudes. shame - it could be a winner.

By Elaine S.

This is not the type of eating place my husband and I frequent but we were feeling adventurous during a recent visit to London. Pleased we went. Atmosphere friendly and fun. Food excellent - we had the sea bass. We had excellent service from the staff who couldn't have been more attentive and helpful.

By Lili M.


The music is NOT metal and is actually an insult to the music industry. But most of all - the pretentious staff are so useless and mean that you are better off not going.

A total waste of time. Anyone who has good music taste and enjoys good food wont waste their time here. A tourist trap for idiots.

By Bob M.

Me and a friend searched around Soho for ages to try and find this place. When we got there it was closed and said it opened at 6 but it was gone six.

They finally opened the doors (this was a Saturday night) when they realised people were waiting outside.

We only wanted a quick drink, and were quickly hurried downstairs to the vampire bar, where the girl behind the bar was really rude and the guy sitting at the bar chatting to her was being a nob.

The garlic shot was horrible, and i nearly threw up cos there were so many lumps of garlic going down my throat.

Would have made the place look a bit nicer. Alright if your a metal head but not if you don't like people treating you like ****.

By Suberb M.

The place is really nice, but the costumer service horrible. You cannot stay at the restaurant to eat tapas, nibbles and salads, but backyard and downstars they don't have menus... so you have to go up, write what you want, down againg and order. Stupid The waitress doesn't let you estay upstairs to choose the food. During the week is this hell, and on weekends it's so busy that you can do whatever you want... so go saturday to eat and drink. Unbelievable

By Angel L.

An interesting place; The good-the food is gorgeous! vegetarian options too. The garlic shots are so much fun, although some of them are pretty vile lol. The restaurant is pretty rock-goth-the front is small, too small, they should have less tables; we had to really squeeze next to other patrons. The bad- The staff are questionable. They are young & funky but some of them are very rude. They make out they're doing you a favour by serving you. There is no email address to complain. They refused to let us order only tapas which is ludicrous as it would have costs far more in the end than a single main meal. this made my friends really angry and almost spoiled our meal as we didn't like being told what to do when we paid nearly £200 for 4 people. The costs is ok for a Soho restaurant.. If they sorted out the sqasked-ness and the friendliness of the staff, it would be a winner.

By Anton R.

Excellent food let down by poor service indeed. Arrogant waiting staff, more willing to talk amongst themselves than serve you after seating, unwilling to accommodate to any of our requests and an indigent response when asked to take the two additional items of food we never ordered and the -optional- service charge that was wholly undeserved off the bill, stating that it's part of the meal and if we did not like it we should not come back. The only tip I would leave is to avoid this restaurant and pick somewhere else in Soho instead.

By Anne Helene H.

Vampires beware, Soho’s Garlic and Shots is - as the name suggests - a haven for garlic lovers.

The Venue
Think Ozzy Osbourne and you get the gist. Garlic and Shots spans two floors. Downstairs is diminutive in size and is accurately described as ‘the crypt’. Here, heavy rock music roars in the background and a stone coffin and plastic skeleton stand in the corner. It has a small bar and space to stand - the only seating area is a long table with chairs in a cell-like tomb.

Upstairs it is less dingy, but the colour scheme is still mostly black. Quirky memorabilia adorns the walls such as Swedish traffic signs warning of elks, posters of Bela Lugosi and plastic bats hanging from the ceiling. There are sofas by the window and a couple of big round tables for larger groups. There is also an outdoor area with heaters.

The Atmosphere
Its dark interior and hairy biker appeal may not be to everyone’s taste, but it is laid back and unpretentious. This, unfortunately, is reflected in the service, which can be a bit hit and miss. The waiters are either friendly and attentive or slow and seemingly moody. The clientele comprises mainly twenty-to-thirtysomethings with a penchant for black jeans, vintage rock band T-shirts, piercings and very long hair. This goes for the staff, too.

The Food
Every single dish on the menu contains generous amounts of garlic - there’s even garlic ice cream. The varied menu is in both Swedish and English and includes staple dishes such as noodles, burgers, steak, ribs, seafood stew and nachos. There is a heavy skew towards its Scandinavian roots with dishes such as Swedish meatballs, Swedish hot dogs (that, quirkily, are served in a tin) and salmon. The portions are big and the food is good quality.

The seafood casserole is recommended with its creamy texture and fair portioning of fish, seafood and, of course, the ever present garlic. Luckily, Garlic and Shots provides each table with a pot of fresh parsley. Prices start from around £9 and can increase to over £20 for more expensive dishes such as the steak.

The Drink
Even the drinks swim in garlic. Recommended is the garlic beer (beer with chopped garlic) just for the novelty. There is also an extensive range of shots (£2.50) on offer. According to Garlic and Shots regulars the Bloodshot (garlic, vodka, tomato, chili and spices) can allegedly cure a cold. Garlic and Shots don’t sell pints, but they have bottled beer, wine and soft drinks.

The Last Word
The food is delicious and the portions are big. However, you have to love garlic to enjoy this place and it might not be the right venue for a first date. It also helps if you don’t mind heavy rock music and an alternative crowd.

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