Hello, my name's Steven but some also know me as Captain Stavros. This past Wednesday however everyone at the Queen Of Hoxton's rooftop press party knew me as, 'hey, you're that guy that lost every arm wrestling match' or 'weren't you the guy that was being strong armed and force fed tequila by the Luchadoras?' some or any of these statements may hold nuggets of truth to them, the memory's a bit hazy from that evening if I'm honest. I can say one thing for certain though it's now Thursday morning and my head feels like a Luchadora's done a backflip off the top ropes and landed a flying elbow square onto my skull, an account which is probably not too far off the mark.
Musos' was asked to come preview the rooftop's opening night for what would soon follow in the coming weeks to be a slew of Mexican themed events this summer hosted at and by the Queen Of Hoxton's Paola Feregrino-Rodriquez, resident cultural curator. Paola really rolled her up her sleeves on this one splashing out on murals, decorations, Mariachi's, Luchadoras and themed foods and drinks. If you'd like to see what we're talking about head over this Sunday for the Cinco-De-Mayo party they're hosting fun in the heart of London for under a fiver.
The rooftop, a 4 flight walk up, nestled just off crowded Shoreditch High Street overlooks a skyline jammed up with cranes and high rises alike. Out under an open sky in central London is sort of a surreal experience because if you're like us, the less than wealthy, you don't have affordable access to huge rooftops during those prime summer weeks (days) in London. We're greeted high above the pavements below there's an unsupervised abundance of Mexican and Spanish themed beers in buckets of ice on each of the picnic tables. Mingling (patrolling) about are Luchadoras, Tigresa and Rana Venanosa, who greet us with warm smiles and clenched fists, 'you arm wrestle?' I'm asked, 'not professionally' I respond. Next thing I know I'm wearing a lucha mask and losing 3 of 3 consecutive arm wrestling matches. What little pride I had, if any, has been and will always remain completely obliterated after this disgrace. Tigresa noticing my very public humiliation and dampening spirits takes it upon herself to revive them in the only manner which seems fit, tequila shots topped with tiny crunchy worms, when in Rome ...
We head to the bar for some snacks to line our guts for the night ahead. There's a healthy sized menu on offer for the summer's patrons but we're restricted to only a few pre-made nibbles. On offer are sliders, pulled chicken and pork tacos accompanied by nachos with several dips. While we didn't have access to vegan/vegetarian options they are there if you're wondering. To be brutally honest, the food was pretty bland and tasted like mushed up water logged paper towels. The tacos erupted and gushed liquids all over us and had zero flavour while the sliders on white sesame seed buns topped with iceberg lettuce and mayo tasted kinda like bathroom cleaning products. The nachos, homemade, were rather oily and outside of the spicy cheese dip left something to be desired. I'm pretty sure it's just opening night teething problems and the process will be refined as the food will be made to order for future events.
There were plenty of other forms of entertainment outside of food to feed off of. We nabbed a few delicious margaritas and made our way over to the all female Mariachi act wandering the rooftop serenading us by blasting out righteous tunes. After swinging by the rooftop's photobooth we tried our hand at, and failed, to put together some fresh flower headbands guided by our very patient tutors. Cracking open the last few beers inspired by our surroundings we made some new friends and chatted in good spirits about topics other than, 'where do you work?' or 'what school did you go to?'and instead stuck to 'where are you going this summer?' or 'aren't you glad it didn't rain today?!'. The atmosphere was a cross between an alfresco-house-party meets bbq vibes. A great place for young and old alike, where a group of friends can meet up on a weekday or weekend and melt away those pesky daylight hours or for some chilled out sunset action in the heart of the city.