Located on Stoke Newington High Street, Stereo92 is the latest from the Distinct Group; which has projects such as Street Feast and Rivington Street Festival on their books. It prides itself in being an all-in-one venue; somewhere that you can have a catch up with your mates and stumble upon a great music event in the same day.
By day, Stereo92 is an authentic airy cafe, where freelancers can avail of coffee fuel and a varied all day brunch. Exposed brick work and makeshift signs on blackboards give it a trendy vibe and the venue is very welcoming as you walk in. There are also tables outside as well, which are perfectly positioned for people watching with a coffee or cocktail - whichever way you’re inclined! At night, it transforms into quite the intimate affair with low lighting and lots of burning candles. The coffee is mostly replaced with wine and cocktails, and couples begin to relax into their date night.
Not immediately obvious and to my surprise, there’s also a basement bar located under the venue. To find it, you make your way down some darkened stairs into the cellar-ish type room with booths and tiny tables. Again there is very little lighting; you can can only make out the tables and stage by the copious amount of candles that have been set up. Here they host an array of different events, from open-mic nights to folk band takeovers. We were lucky enough to enjoy a Jazz Jam by some very talented artists.
Food and Drinks
Upon arrival, we were famished and when looking at the menu, we knew we were in for a treat. Our waitress - who was both attentive and knowledgeable - suggested cocktails to start off the evening (on a Tuesday no less!) and taking our preferences into consideration, she recommended the Fresh Prince (£6.75) and Beet It (£6.75) accordingly. With ingredients like Jagermeister and Jameson, we thought these would pack a punch but the there was a perfect balance in every cocktail, making them a bit too easy to drink(!). We also had a giggle at the humorous cocktail names, with a special shout out to the ‘Expecto Patron - In’.
On to the food and we started off with a sharing Calamari (£7.50) dish before heading to the mains. With a everything under £10.50, you’d think these would be small-ish portions but we were pleasantly surprised when our food was dished out. Not only was the Steak Po Boy + Fries (£10.50) and Chicken in a Bun + Fries (£9.50) a fair amount of food, it also tasted delicious. Admittedly we were too full for dessert but could not pass up the option to try their intriguing Stereo Shakes. The two we went for were the Peanut Butter, Banana and Bourbon (£6.50) and the Coconut, Chocolate and Rum (£6.50), both were all we could have hoped for and more.
During dinner we were placed in the upstairs cafe and bar, where the layout of the venue was darkened with burning candles but the atmosphere was light and relaxed. This attracted the sort of customers you’d expect, with a few couples dotted around and friends catching up over drinks. The mood was chilled and relaxing, you could happily stay there for dinner and spend the rest of the evening drinking in the same spot. We were lucky enough to go when the weather was nice, so spent a bit of time outside before our meal.
Once we were finishing our Stereo Shakes at the end of our meal, we heard a faint flutter of music and upon enquiring, we we told it was their end of the month, Tuesday Jazz Jam. Heading down the dark staircase into their Basement Bar, it was like you were in a completely different venue. With a spotlight on the band and small tables dotted around, it struck me as a similar setup to a bar within the prohibition era. Quickly sitting, it wasn't long before we were entranced by the type of music that was playing and when looking around, it seemed as though everyone else was right there with us.
Stereo92 lives up to its promise; it's a great all-in-one venue for anything like catching up with friends to a work meeting during the day - but what I’d really recommend it for is a date night. Its relaxed vibe and varied menu will put anyone at ease and cater for all types of food lovers. If you’re planning on going, their end of the month Tuesday nights are a winner too as that's when their Jazz Jams are on; be sure to look out for their Jazz offers!