If you’re looking for a small, intimate cocktail bar in Peckham, serving interesting drinks in an elegant space, then you’ve just found it.
It’s an offshoot of nearby South African restaurant Kudu, and both are named for the Antelope-like animal native to the southern part of the continent – it’s famed for being extremely difficult to hunt, for its beautifully curved horns, and for the annual kudu dung spitting championship, held since 1994.
The world record is 51 feet, FYI.
You’ll find Smokey Kudu in a little railway arch directly next to Queen’s Road Peckham station. It’s dominated by the handsome horseshoe bar planted right in the centre of the space. Hovering above it is an ornate diamond of a chandelier, and flanking both sides you’ll find velvety seating lining the walls, with red marble tables. It’s small, it’s bustling, and you might find yourself elbow-to-elbow with fellow drinkers.
The menu is appropriately small as well comprising just a dozen drinks in total – but they’re all pretty great, they’re all made with refreshingly South African ingredients, and they’re handily divided by flavour profiles. Amongst the ‘Bold & Boozy’ concoctions, you’ll find the flagship Smokey Kudu, which comes with South African whisky, rosehip, wormwood, and yes – smoke. It’s lovely. The ‘Spiced & Aromatic’ drinks include a Saffa-rita, that blends chilli tequila with Van der Hum (a unique tangerine flavour liquor made in the Cape). And the ‘Fruity & Zesty’ numbers boast a Kudu Spritz made with South African vermouth.
And if you’re in the market for something a little non-cocktail-ey? You’ll be pleased to know that there are South African wines on offer, Peckham beers, and a little biltong.
And after that, it’s only about 50 feet to the station.
Spitting distance, really.
NOTE: Smokey Kudu is open Wednesday-Sunday. There are no bookings. You can see the full menu, and find out more at their website right HERE.
Smokey Kudu | 133 Queens Road, SE15 2AY
Want a little South African food to go with this? Kudu is just a hop and a skip away.