277 Hackney Road, London, E2 8NA, United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)203 664 0033
Website: Not supplied
Hours: Mon - Closed; Tues-Thurs 10am-12am; Fri-10am-2am; Sat 9am-2am; Sun 9am-7pm
Style: Cocktail bar
Recommended for: Fun/atmosphere
Price guide: Middling
Images By: diffordsguide.com
Nestled mid-way down Hackney Road close to the Colombia Road flower market, Mr Buckley's takes its name from a disgruntled publican who, after being refused entry to the gentlemen's club that stood on the site in 1883, set fire to the building's gas main while 250 revellers danced inside.
Having gone through various different guises over the years, most recently a curry house, the venue is now reborn as a split-level neighbourhood bar, and brings a new dimension to late night drinking to an area previously limited to a pint at the Joiner's Arms.
The open plan, brick-walled interior houses two bars, with the focus on the downstairs level where the bar runs almost the length of the area (the upstairs one has limited seating and functions more as a dispense station).
Brothers Phil and Martin Way, previously of the Hoxton Bar & Kitchen and Polpo, respectively, have curated a well-chosen back-bar choice and a concise cocktail list. Book-ended with classic cocktails, the plan is to rotate both food and drinks menus monthly. A bacon-infused Bloody Mary, modified fizzes and a Jack Rose articulate the offer, with drinks made with care and understanding of components. A decent selection of bottled beers accompanies a limited draught selection along with a balanced wine list. The food menu is well-executed with vibrant flavours and textures and represents excellent value (a good thing as the licence dictates customers must eat).
Good vibes from confident, welcoming staff make Mr Buckley's a welcoming, convivial atmosphere.