Ruski's Tavern

Words by Jane Ryan on 26-Oct-2013

Address: 1 Kensington High St, London, W8 5NP , United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0) 20 3747 6919
Website: view Ruski's Tavern’s website
Door: Entry charge
Style: Nightclub
Food: Tapas/plates & dishes


A new ultra-premium, ultra-exclusive club in West London, this time based around Russian vodka and caviar. But this isn't just another too-cool-for-school venue with bottle sales. And for that reason we're reviewing it, because the cocktail offering is serious and well-executed and so long as you arrive before 11pm, this club in fact acts more like a luxurious cocktail den with canapés.

Reservations are key at Ruski's and they won't unclip the golden rope surrounding the door unless you have a name (after 10:30pm it's an inequitable £15 for ladies and £20 for gents). Inside, the basement site is a gilded, elaborate venue split over three rooms. Red appropriately dominates the Soviet-inspired decadent décor. Up to 11pm the mood is relatively sedate - then until 3am the tempo rises.

The drinks menu continues the Russian theme with lashing of vodka and cocktail names such as KGB (Mount Gay Xo Rum, Remy Martin Vsop, Falernum, Fresh lime juice, Gomme, Creole Bitters), Kremlin, Red Army and Rasputin (Belenkaya Vodka, Lillet Blanc, Single malt whisky, Martini Rosso). Cocktail prices range from £8 to £12.50 and from our experience - admittedly early doors - drinks arrive well balanced.

A delicious range of canapés all feature caviar combined. There's also a stunning Martini trolley which will be rolled over to your table. Staff are attentive and happy to guide you through the menu but unless you enjoy self-indulgent debauchery by the rich and famous and their sidekicks escape before Ruski's turns from dynastic to revolutionary.