At Prudence, African and Balinese sculptures square off with ornate vases of china and taxidermy deer-heads. It’s a fun, loud exercise in unpretentious kitsch, and that’s just the front room.
Before opening in 2000, Prudence was a record store, and that still shows. Vintage warmth and a love for analogue still reverberate throughout. Knowledgeable staff members – each with their own-wide ranging tastes – put on their favourite records every night. Behind the bar, stacks of LPs are given pride of place next to a wide array of spirits.
Out the back, there’s a large courtyard with a Viking long-hall feel, with high beams above and long tables facing each other. The upstairs – courtesy of a 2015 renovation – is a labyrinth of comfortable, intimate booths dotted with gilded mirrors and Victorian chandeliers. The lighting casts every area with a warm red glow.
If the decor is gaudy and eclectic, it’s brought back down to earth by a mature, no-nonsense drinks list. The wine list skews local, with some additions from overseas, and it’s accompanied by a sizable selection of Champagnes by the bottle.
On tap there’s a rotating variety of beers that are always joined by the house speciality, Prudence lager. There’s also an ample array of cocktails, sours and single-malts. A bar-food menu rounds out the offering.