24 October 2017

Little Shuffle Club, Shoreditch

I'm kind of crap at sports. Actually, strike that... I'm terrible at sports. I only become competitive when I'm doing vaguely well, and then I get overly enthusiastic, lose focus, and er, lose. So the launch of London's first permanent table shuffle club, The Little Shuffle Club, peaked my interest. 

The Little Shuffle Club follows two sell-out shuffle seasons - although the first I heard of it was on Made in Chelsea (ha). Shuffling is borne out of hipster hotspot, Brooklyn, so naturally it's been translated across the pond in Shoreditch.

The club is little; I'm not sure what came first, the venue or the name. It's like going into a pimped out, oversized garage (there is actually a dining room with corrugated steel at the back), with two shuffle tables, and one 'snapback' shuffle table.

When we arrived, the tables were already occupied (you can book in advance, but they accept walk-ins too), so we headed for the bar first to wait our turn.

As the night went on, two bartenders became three, but it was clear they could have done with double the staff, what with the hustle and bustle of the preview night. Luckily, the cocktails didn't disappoint.

The Cherry Gander - with Grey Goose pear vodka, Aperol, cherry and Prosecco - was a clear favourite with the crowd...

But I equally enjoyed the Plumdog Millionaire (Jack Daniel whisky, plum wine, taramind, mint) and Greenfinger Fizz (Bombay Sapphire Gin, basil, St Germain, tonic). After all three I started to feel a little squiffy, so rest assured you get what you pay for!

If you're not feeling a cocktail (apparently these people exist, who knew?), there's Instagram-friendly beer and wine to tickle your tastebuds.

Here's the menu to prove it...

"Look in the other fridge"

And you're encouraged to get social, in more ways than one...

But the main event: the shuffle! ... the shuffling? Shuffle-ing?

It's (generally) fool-proof - you lightly push the disc down the board, with the aim to slide it as close to the end as possible. The closer to the end, the more points you get, from 1 to 4. If you manage to shuffle the disc so it's halfway off the end, that's 8 points, i.e. the money shot. You just have to hope no one knocks it off...

I, of course, managed to knock my friend's disc into first place, so lost out on what should have been a clear win. Le sigh.

Little Shuffle would be brilliant in a big group, and will definitely be a popular alternative to the standard after work drinks if you're lucky enough to work in the area.

Between games, we said 'hi' to this little fella (is he/she the namesake?), and grabbed some hefty slices of pizza courtesy of Voodoo Rays, who are just across the road at Boxpark. Convenient, eh?

Although it's not the cheapest activity (£20pp, for an hour slot), you're guaranteed a good time. Picture it: shuffle, beer, pizza. Heaven.

The Little Shuffle Club is now open on 2 Ebor Street, E1 6AW.

If you're lucky enough, you might even have these kitties greet you...


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