Saturday, 29 January 2011

Pub Series: Nostrum


It's pretty much like you're headed to Neighbors. If you're walking down Hamra street and Lina's is on your right, take a right at the corner after it. Walk down that street until you get to the next one. Now, instead of crossing the street, just take another right. The first place is Brick's (will post about that soon!) and right next door, you'll find Nostrum


They serve food until 12 a.m.
Last night was my first time there, so I can't honestly say whether the food is any good or not. However, there were 2 tables of about 8 - 10  people having dinner when I first walked in, and the looked pretty satisfied!

Happy hour:

Nostrum's happy hour lasts from 6 p.m. - 9 p.m. and works with a "buy one get one free" system. Sounds good, huh?


This must have been my favorite part of the night! Great DJ, I must say. Before even walking in, I heard the music playing from way outside. I love going to pubs and listening to chilled out music, but this is definitely more my style. It's great for the weekends when you're looking to have some fun. Here are some of the things they played last night:

  • Miss California - Dante Thomas (haven't heard this in ages!!)
  • Keep Their Heads Ringing - Dr. Dre
  • Ruff Ryders Anthem - DMX
  • Temperature - Sean Paul
  • Whatever You Like - T.I.
  • Ayo Technology - 50 Cent


The inside looks great! According to the manager, they're going to redecorate soon and make it look even better. They're adding couches and more of the amazing paintings they have up (bought from a store in Gemmayze).
The bathroom stalls were really cute, indicating who goes where with "Chicos" and "Chicas"
The staff were really friendly and very lively. At one point the waiters were dancing as they were serving people, which shows that they're having a good time and it really puts you in a great mood.
They served us 2 shots on the house. One was our choice, and one was their special Nostrum shot, which I do recommend if you're interested in a fruity taste. All in all, I really enjoyed my night. It was disappointing that it got so empty right after happy hour on a Friday night. I think when more people discover this place, it's going to be a big hit.

Monday, 24 January 2011

Pub Series: Flo + Burger Nation Review

I was late with this post, so I added a review on Burger Nation as an apology!!

Today's post will be focusing on Flo.


It's further away than most of the pubs on Hamra, but still a hot spot for anyone who enjoys Hamra's nightlife. It's right next to Flying Pizza. Or if you're coming from bliss, just take the road going up at Charlie's Hot Dogs. I can't honestly give proper directions from people coming from Hamra, because I always just walk in a certain direction until I see something familiar. For some reason, I can never memorize exactly where Flo is!


They serve food at Flo. Like Neighbors, the food is served until 1 a.m. I really enjoyed their nachos, and also the chicken quesadilla. Although it probably wouldn't be a great idea to have the chicken right before a night of heavy drinking. In that case, I would suggest a plan to specifically go there to eat one day.

Happy hour:
Weirdly enough, happy hour does not exist in Flo!

I always enjoy the music at Flo. You neevr know what kind of music you'll end up listening to. The selection ranges from Destiny's Child to Michael Jackson to Bob Marley. It starts off with very lounge-y music, and then moves on to livelier songs. Some of my favorite songs heard at Flo are:

  • The General - Dispatch
  • This is the Life - Amy MacDonald
  • Billy Jean - Michael Jackson

Flo is pretty funky on the inside with a mixture of modern and classic elements. I love sitting upstairs, and that's where I usually am; it's comfortable and the best place to be seated if you're a big group. I sat downstairs for the first time on Saturday and I realized that you get to see a lot more people downstairs. Upstairs you're pretty much isolated. So if you're about 2 - 4 people, I would suggest you sit downstairs, but a bigger group would definitely be more comfortable upstairs.
Ladies, you won't be bored on your trip to the bathroom. There's a really funny quote waiting for you in there. It's also done in a really cool way, because it's written in mirror image and placed right next to a mirror, so you have to read it through the mirror. Hard to explain, so go check it out!

 Here's something that Neighbors is missing: Hypnotic shots!

Best time to be there?:
I don't think I've ever gone to Flo and not found anywhere to sit. There's a constant flow of people coming in and out, so you're generally safe whatever time you get there. I would recommend around 10 - 10:30 p.m. That's when the music starts to build up a little bit, making it the perfect time to start your night.

That's all for the pub, now on to my apology/review.

Burger Nation

It was heartbreaking to see one of the best coffee shops, Cafe Najjar, replaced by a burger place, yet somehow exciting because I always have to go to Achrafiye to get myself a good burger.

I finally had dinner at Burger Nation last night, and here is what I thought.

The Food:
The food was really good. I have to say, there was nothing I tried that I did not like. There was an insane burst of flavor. I first of all definitely recommend that you choose to "make your own burger" instead of picking one off the menu, because then you get exactly what you're craving. And I also definitely recommend you choose garlic mayo as your sauce. The flavor is so out there, trust me you will be using your fries to wipe off any of it left on the plate.

The Atmosphere:
It's very modern, and it kind of puts a smile to your face. The outdoor seating is great, and they have heaters for when it's too cold. The inside is nice as well, I really like the paintings on the wall. Even their place-mats are entertaining to read!!

The Service:
I just want everyone to keep in mind that Burger Nation is still relatively new, and that this happens everywhere. But the service really wasn't that great. The appetizers (try out the onion rings by the way!) took a while to get to us, they even completely forgot one of them. Although we had ordered our drinks, I had to ask twice about my diet 7up, and my friends' milkshakes took a while because apparently the bartender wasn't there to make them. Other than that, they were really friendly, and I'm going to assume that this happened because they've newly opened. Let's hope the service gets better!

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Pub Series: Neighbors

The holidays are over, which means it's back to work, back to university and back to this blog!
I will be kicking off my pub series with my favorite pub on Hamra: Neighbors! So sit back, and enjoy.

Neighbors is a small pub located right next to Ristretto. For those who still don't know where that is: if you're on main street Hamra, take the right that comes after Lina's cafe. Keep walking straight down until you've crossed a street, and then it should be directly on your right.

They do serve food! It is served all the way until 1 a.m. and it's pretty good, in my opinion.
I would recommend the mini burgers and potato wedges. To be completely honest, I expected the food to be just alright. But I can truthfully say that I will walk down there just to have a plate of those potato wedges, so don't miss out!

Happy hour:
Happy hour starts at 7 p.m. and ends at 9 p.m.
By 7:30, the place is usually packed, so if you're interested in making it in time for happy hour I would suggest getting there as early as possible. That's not always the case though, last night I got there at 8 and it was packed by 8:30. Better safe than sorry though!

The nice thing about Neighbors is the variety of music they play. During first half of the night you would be listening to some pretty chilled out tracks, and then as the night progresses, so does the music. Usually (especially on weekends) by the end of the night the music gets pretty upbeat, and despite it being a cozy little pub, people are out of their seats and enjoying their time.

Some songs they played last night that I loved were:

  • Man's World - James Brown
  • Walk The Line - Johnny Cash
  • Comfortably Numb - Pink Floyd
  • Everybody Hurts - R.E.M

The best part about Neighbors is, besides the music, how unbelievably chilled out this place is! The seating is comfortable, whether you're on a couch or on stools. It can get a little stuffy sometimes, but usually you have your space and don't have to worry about leaning back and hitting into the person behind you. You can literally just walk in off the street, everyone's very laid back and casual (no heels required girls!). The staff are friendly too, if you've been there once, they'll remember you the next time you walk in.

Best time to be there?:
To be on the safe side, I would recommend to be there by 7:30/8:00. The problem with that, though, is that you're there quite early and so might end up leaving early. If you're lucky enough to find a table, I think 10:30 is the best time to be there. By that time, the music starts to get a little more lively, as do the people.

And there you have it, pub number 1 is done! If you have any suggestions about other aspects I should focus on, let me know in the comment box. If you would like to suggest pubs for me to check out, leave those in the comment box too! I hope you enjoyed this, until next Sunday.

Images from: Neighbor's Facebook Page