Dead hippies, bowling and skating on thin ice in Queensway
I wasn’t allowed to go bowling when I was a kid. It was something viewed with suspicion by the fun police in my family along with ITV, comics and fizzy drinks. I did manage to sneak out and go ice-skating a couple of times as a teenager but was so nervous that someone would skate over my pianist’s hands – I spent most of my time on my backside – that it was never much fun. In the intervening 40 years, it transpires that bowling alleys and ice-rinks have become very cool and enjoyable places to go.QUEENS Skate, Dine and Bowl is located on Queensway and with 12 state-of-the-art bowling lanes, central London’s only all-year-round ice rink, a retro-arcade and catering from MEATliquor it’s time for me to make up for my dysfunctional childhood and get bowling.QUEENS Skate, Dine and Bowl has been around in one form or another for 90 years but has recently had a makeover. We started off at the bowling alley and played a couple of games which was a lot of fun. If you haven’t done it before you can just follow the instructions on an electronic screen. There are different sized balls for different sized people, private bowling lanes for hire and a drinks menu with waitress service and a great selection of shakes, floats, beers, wines and cocktails.We try a Space Gin Smash, a fresh summery blend of Bombay Sapphire, ruby grapes, apple, mint lemon and elderflower, and a New Cross Negroni – a mix of Bombay Sapphire gin, my favourite Antica Formula vermouth and Aperol. For those of you for whom Space Invaders and Galaxian machines bring back heady memories of an ill-spent youth then the Retro Arcade is the place for you…Our next destination was the Sin Bin – an Ice Hockey themed bar with lots of memorabilia and more importantly a jukebox. It’s the perfect place to stock up on a little Dutch courage before a trip out onto the ice. The rink is huge with plenty of space for incompetents like me and for those of you showing off doing your double Salchows alike. On Wednesdays and Saturdays they also have curling which is the sport that grips the nation every Winter Olympics that involves sweeping the ice and begging the ‘rocks’ to go where you want. After ice-based exploits, it was time for another drink. We headed back to the rock ‘n roll themed bar and restaurant area with its own pool table, found a comfortable spot to eat and moved onto a lemony bottle of Picpoul Réserve Roquemolière 2017. Food is provided by MEATliquor, the upmarket burger people with a menu heaving with chicken dishes, burgers, hotdogs, salads, veggie options and just the 7 types of fries. We tried the cheeseburger and fries which was a deliciously chunky version of the classic. A juicy halloumi mushroom burger came with ‘hippie fries’ slathered with grilled onions and a deliciously cheesy ‘dead hippie sauce’. With super-friendly and helpful staff it would be very difficult not to have a great night out at QUEENS Skate, Dine and Bowl so why not give it a try.
+44 20 7229 0172
Disclosure: We were guests of QUEENS London but all content is editorially given.