Bottles is a Mexican restaurant situated in Victoria Island, Lagos. Apparently its being around for about 10 years but I'd only just heard of it and went down there last Friday for a friends birthday.
As described on their website "Bottles gets it's name from the bottles strewn around the restaurant.... Green Gin bottles, emptied by drunken sailors and traders and thrown into the oily waters of the Delta. Years later these Bottles have been retrieved and collected as artifacts...... Giving rise to the theme of Bottles Restaurant."
Yeah well, sidest of eyes to that, I didn't see any bottles on the floor, probably safer anyway.
Alright lets get in to it, first of all...NO SIGNS!!
There was absolutely nothing to indicate this place was a culinary establishment of any sort, if not for the crush of cars parked outside I wouldn't have known anything was happening there. Luckily I know the surrounding area pretty well so it wasn't very difficult for me to find it but please, for the love of God, a well placed sign would not hurt, really.
Below is a photo of the front door, I'm guessing they were going for a Mexican/African rustic vibe, maybe aping the outdoor of an Inca hut, who knows. It was cute, though a bit contrived.
Outside the restaurant is the usual table heaped with overpriced African touristy art, jewelry etc; this is obviously geared towards the expat community because you could pick these up for way less at the beach.
The decor within was very bright, think Betty Suarez's huse in Ugly Betty. Enough colours to make a Dulux exec swoon.
I liked it.
contrary to my somber, gloomy, vampiric nature I'm very fond of colour.
I LOVED this mural at the end of the room, the streets of Cuernevaca perhaps? I almost expected exotic women with flashing dark eyes and kerchiefs tied around their heads, doing the salsa to apparate into the room. The visual was that strong.
See what I said about the colours?
You could use this room to teach a toddler his entire spectrum of primary and secondary colours.
The bar was cute, with the sombreros hung around the top.
There was a live band too.
I didn't stay till late but apparently around 10-ish it gets super lively, singers weaving around the room, the band belting out their cucarachas. Wish I could have stayed for that, will definitely try to get there later another time.
Zee Sabroso, or the tasty food to you non-Spanish speakers...including me...I just googled that :)
I put the menus here so you guys can ruin your eyes trying to read what's on it so you can all get glasses. Everybody looks better in glasses, non?
I'd heard about their frozen margaritas, apparently they're famous for it. I'm not much of a drinker myself and would always take a bottle of Maltina over the best glass of wine anyday but I had a few alchys with me who sang the praises of the frozen strawberry margaritas to high heavens.
I thought it was a bit bitter but maybe that's how they're supposed to taste, how do I know.
Everyone gets complimentary nachos and salsa, not spicy enough for me, but then again nothing ever is. It tasted good though.
I ordered prawns and chips (yes I like my prawns) which honestly wasn't very nice. Prawns are pretty easy to cook and I was a bit taken aback that they could be screwed up. It wasn't "spit out on the floor you're trying to poison me" bad, but I didn't like it, and I know my prawns.
One of my friends had enchiladas which although looked like heart disease on a plate apparently tasted beyond amazing, she literally mopped her plate up.
Ambience - Top marks, they were going for a warm, convivial atmosphere and they nailed it. The decor alone makes one happy, you can't be in a room that looks like an explosion in a Mexican paint factory and be upset. Plus the music was so jolly you're literally wreathed in smiles throughout. Not a place for a romantic dinner though, people are shouty and cheery and drunk as skunks in there, no way you can wear your heart on your sleeve or propose at Bottles. I'd give it 5 out of 5 stars for ambience.
Service - It was pretty standard, considering we were there at happy hour and the place was teeming I thought the waitresses did an alright job. 2.5 stars out of 5
Drinks - I can't personally rate it but an overwhelming majority swear by their frozen maragaritas so I guess it must be good.
Food - My prawns were nasty, I'd give them a 0.5 based on my dish alone but everyone else loved their food so I guess there must be something good there. Don't go by my restricted palate, I'm a picky eater. Plus they serve a pretty standard Tex-Mex fare of Fajitas, Taquita, Flautas, Tostadas, Tacos, Tequila Prawns *raised eyebrow*, Quesadillas, Burritos, Chimichangas etc. So if that's your thing, go get you some.
Price - Everything in Lagos is so overpriced that some prices which would be scandalous abroad seem almost affordable. So I won't compare the Bottles prices with restaurants outside the country. Appetizers are no more than N2,500, steaks cost between N3,000 to N6,000, burgers are not more than N3,200 and the most expensive dish there is the Surf & Turf combo which goes for N6,200. Not bad in my estimation.
All in all it has a very jolly atmosphere and is a great place to let your hair down and get a couple of drinks in before you kick of your night proper.
Oh yeah they also do takeaways
3 stars out of 5.
Bottles is at 8 Imam Agusta close off Olosa street off Karimu Kotun street which is off Akin Adesola street (trust me you need these directions) Victoria Island, Lagos.
Phone number is 0700 BOTTLES (2688537)
I forgot the best bit! On Tuesday nights they have an event called Texas Tuesdays where you can get unlimited wings and beer for just N4,500. Now if you were me you'd have mentally discounted the beer bit and focused on the wings bit and gone unlimited wings????
Yes, unlimited, all night. All for just N4,500.
Will def be there next Tuesday and if you see me there don't be shy to say hi..or high...who the heck knows what Tonto was trying to say.
Love and light xx