When it comes to offering a wonderfully vibrant and all-encompassing night out, few are in the same league as Paradise. This is a welcoming Kensal Green hangout, equally adept at hosting dinner and drinks, custom-designed private parties and rowdy evenings of dance floor frolics under the same roof. We dropped in on the DMN public’s Best Pub of 2014/5 to find this West London favourite in typically fine fettle.
Perched on the corner where Kilburn Lane intercepts Regent Street, Paradise’s understated exteriors give no hint of the stunningly furnished destination that lies within. First up is the bar area. Characterised by its stately chandeliers, soothing candlelit vibes and a prominent shabby chic edge, this tasteful space sets visitors up for a night out right away. It’s flanked by a private function area and the venue’s renowned dining room, which is a similarly grandiose affair that leads on to an alfresco area for when the weather is fine.
As the night wears on, a steady trickle of revellers up sticks and head to the first floor, where the promise land of big party tunes and a thriving dance floor awaits an exhibition of shape-shifting into the early hours.
Paradise is a hive of activity from minute one. The pub area plays host to a young crowd who settle at candlelit tables and inviting sofas with a couple of drinks in tow. Most of the venue’s private hire spaces – which are on the outskirts of the communal areas – were booked up on our visit, and the constant torrent of laughter and chit-chat that poured from these rooms only added to the venue’s energy further.
The dining room came packed out with a mix of families and couples treating themselves to a night of wining and dining, but it was once again upstairs that stole the show in this observer’s view. The Club Room is a different beast entirely. It’s where a cool West London crowd lets off some steam, and DJs play those infectious party anthems you can’t help but love until close. With DJs of Yoda and Norman Jay’s ilk dropping the tunes, that’s no Average Joe on the decks, either.
The Food & Drink
Unfortunately for us, we couldn’t bag a table in the prized dining room on this occasion. The venue proudly states “the menu at Paradise is our pride and joy”, and with everything from hearty British comfort food to Sunday lunch with all the trimmings it’s a strong choice for eating out in style. We didn’t sample these various culinary delights upon this visit, but with the scent of pan fried scallops, rump of lamb and aged rib eye steak drifting across from next door, it’s only a matter of time before I’m back to do so.
We did however enjoy an assortment of bar snacks. The cod croquettes with caper & lemon mayo come packed with flavour in bite-sized helpings, and the fried smoked Scamorzas oozed with a delicious fusion of cheese and chilli. There are a handful of cocktails and beers to match with your food, as well as a vast wine list.
Juggling a flourishing private hire set-up, a charming dining room and a raucous clubbing experience is no child’s play, but Paradise makes it look easy. A West London gem attracting crowds from all over the capital and beyond, you could easily head over for dinner, some drinks and a dance before returning for a roast and a Bloody Mary to ease that hangover the next day.