Drink Lagos: NOIR
Welcome to Drink Lagos, wherein members of the Eat.Drink.Lagos team will dive into all aspects of drinking in Lagos: the bars and lounges, the Happy Hours, and the insider secrets.
LALA: Long and overdue visit to Noir. I remember sometime in December when there was talk about a really good fancy restaurant that had just opened and of course the usual food pictures everywhere.
GBENGA: My second time here. Good Location (Same street as NOK) but for the love of me I can’t remember what used to occupy the space prior.
LALA: I really like how they worked with the space, seeing as they are using just one of the floors in the complex. The interior is so nicely done. The dining area, in particular, is perfect.
GBENGA: The vibe is very contemporary. The art, lighting, staff uniforms, table design, and even the type of cutlery teleports you to one of those seaside restaurants in Nice.
LALA: OH MY GOD! The lighting at the bar. I really just went on a selfie marathon before I even looked at the menu. Biased already, I love Noir.
GBENGA: Yeah, Lala took pictures for about 10 minutes, smh.
The ambience just screams class! Owner said most of the art on display are from her personal collection, which is very impressive.
Do note, if you are coming to dine, be sure you make a reservation. It’s still new so it has the initial gra-gra. However, we were just there for the cocktails, so you can always walk in and sit at the bar.
GBENGA: The drinks also come with a complementary bowl of different kinds of nuts (almonds and hazelnuts), raisins and roasted plantain chips. They aren’t stingy with the servings, I even got extras.
LALA: Allergic to nuts so Gbenga had that by himself. Going by the look on his face, I think he enjoyed them.
Now, to the cocktails.
I am all about my cocktails and honestly for me it was the usual cocktail menu you’d find in a lot of restaurants in Lagos BUT with quite high prices. So, if you are thinking of getting quite buzzed at Noir, please come very prepared.
GBENGA: See, drink at home before coming here lol. I really don’t see people coming here to get buzzed though, more of a romantic dinner type of setting. Speaking of, I spoke to the owner about doing something for Valentine’s day. You are welcome, guys.
LALA: I decided to go with an El Diablo just because it was the only cocktail on the menu with a mix that I had not tried before. It has Tequila, Crème De Cassis Lemon Juice and Ginger Ale.
I liked the presentation and the blueberries on top. Then, I tasted it and, wow, you really do taste the tequila in it. Didn’t even taste the ginger beer at all.
It wasn’t overly strong, though, but you do notice the sharpness of the tequila. To be fair, I am a tequila lover so it may be a bit too strong for some.
GBENGA: I asked our bartender, Simon, to suggest the best cocktail they had. He suggested I go with “Gin Basil Smash” - Gin, Lemon Juice, Fresh Basil and Sugar.
Looked really good but Immediately I took my first sip I knew I had cheated myself - it was way too sweet. The Gin was pretty much missing and all I got was sugar and lemon juice. Further sips seemed to unlock an aromatic flavour, which I think can be attributed to the fresh basil.
LALA: The gin basil was also too sweet for me, as well. It just tasted like sugar and the basil overpowered the whole drink. Gin can be easily overpowered in mixtures so you have to get the balance right.
Side note: the bartender Simon was pretty cool. Had a bit of chitchat with him and he kept blushing. I think I have that effect on bartenders.
GBENGA: Lol, maybe you could’ve asked him to top up my drink then?
I preferred the El Diablo to the Gin Basil. First sip and immediately the tequila screams for attention. There's a fruity and spicy after taste probably due to the creme de something-something juice. This one hit me
LALA: Lol Gbenga it’s Crème De Cassis Lemon Juice, comprenez vous?
GBENGA: I failed French in secondary school, no vex.
LALA: Honestly, nothing really special about the cocktail menu. Just the usual drinks and pricey. You’ll probably go somewhere else and have, for example, a long island for cheaper.
GBENGA: I agree. I found the pricing a bit much but Noir is sort of like a niche spot so I guess that justifies it to an extent. Again, if you want to impress your partner or a business client then this is the place you take them. If the plan is to get wasted, then there’s Jameson at home.
LALA: The wine list is pretty extensive though, quite a lot to pick from.
GBENGA: There’s a 125k wine on the menu. Abeg, if anyone tries this let us know what it tastes like.
El Diablo - N3800
Gin Basil Smash - N3200
Moderately spacious parking, you won’t be forced to do any Fast and Furious stunts before you can park.
*Cough* Bungalow *Cough*
Lala is the Founder and Head Consultant Marketing at Lala Alakija agency. She also runs a cocktail club, Eko Cocktail Club, which you should join if you are a lover of cocktails and you are interested in partaking in creative boozy experiences.