The Clumsies Pop Up Bar – First Stop Mexico “Palmitas”
I opened my bar tour with the Pop Up Bar Palmitas, a project of The Clumsies that will now close next weekend after half a year. This is the first pop up bar in Greece at all. One of the bartenders of Clumsies told me the last time that he works there and it is worth to go. So, I set off straight away to a large industrial building where the bar is located in the 4th floor. Usually I do not use elevators to get to a bar, but on that day it felt special and exiting.
When I entered the bar I found myself in a huge space and somehow in the Mexican slums. Rather poshy slums than the real favelas. The space is divided into different areas. You find a tattoo and a barber shop, a street food kitchen and a beautiful street art on one of the walls with comfortable armchairs. In the middle of the room is the dining area with wooden tables. At the end of the room you will find a long bar counter with 4-5 ice stations. I took a seat in front of the bartender I met in Clumsies. I was early for Greek conditions and so I had enough time to take a closer look to all the details. Everything looked perfect, a bit too perfect for a pop up but it was great. I felt like being in Mexico, a hot night with live Latin American music and agave spirit. Only the view towards the Acropolis reminded me that I was in Athens. I started with some food to have a solid base for the upcoming drinks. The street food menu looked very nice and I went with the Quesadilla accompanied by, I would say Mexican Gin & Tonic, a “Paloma”. Tequila based longdrink with grapefruit lemonade, salt and lime. A light and refreshing drink that I did not pay much attention so far. The mixture of salinity and acidity was well balanced and the tequila was there. I observed what was going on, chatted with the bartenders, ate my Mexican food served on tin plates, took some notes and enjoyed life. The organisation behind the bar was pretty good, the atmosphere was great, so I was able to forget about the drinks floated with Blue Curacao. This is not a classical cocktail bar.
What I liked most were the colorful aprons with flowers and skulls tied with a rope in the back. Anyhow, I love uniformly dressed barstaff.
The bar jackets at Schumann’s are cult, the bar jackets at Beckett’s Kopf are elegant but aprons are a new trend and I like them in all variations, made of leather, from jeans, symmetric or asymmetric. I noticed them first at the baristas.
My dinner was followed by a dessert of „Real Minero Barril“ with nearly 50 Vol.-%. It was edgy with some nice fruity sweetness and the typical “rotten taste” of wet earth and smoking wood. Next came a “Mezcaloni”. I am not sure how the idea came up that a Negroni is a light drink. Maybe because I often say that drinks with gin are more light than others? Meanwhile the bar got packed, the music turned up and the preparation of the drinks became a bit boring. And furthermore I was looking forward to go to Baba Au Rum. I paid much less and took the elevator back into the Greek nightlife.
My conclusion is this: I like Pop Up Bars. Unfortunately it was too dark for better pictures. But it is left up to the imagination.
Slightly tipsy I walked the way to Baba Au Rum, passed the Acropolis which is magical and has a calming effect somehow. It is like a fixed star in the sky.
But then it changed, the streets got crowded and colorful due to the Carnival in Athens. I took a shortcut through narrow alleys what is not quite safe regarding my bad sense of orientation, but finally I reached the target. Also crowded outside and inside but at the end of the bar I found some space. A warm welcome and some drinks followed.
Well, my enthusiasm for this bar is infinite. There are some bars perfectly planned but at this place you will find perfection with heart and soul. I stayed till 4 o’clock and till the last two “guests” entered the space. The hospitality is not limited to human beings as you see 🙂