Nick Grimshaw held a book launch for his hilarious, honest and heartwarming new memoir ‘Soft Lad’, at Common Decency, NoMad in London.
Common Decency cocktail bar is situated below the NoMad hotel in a Grade II listed building, formerly The Bow Street Magistrates’ Court and police station where the Kray twins, Oscar Wilde and Vivienne Westwood were infamously tried.
Guests descended the steps down to the bar and were greeted with glasses of Moët & Chandon and a first look at the new book ‘Soft Lad’. Most leafed through to find snippets of famous tales and search for mentions and throwback pictures of themselves.
As the night went on, Davina McCall was the first to get up and dance to Grimmy’s friends and former BBC Radio 1 colleagues spinning the decks – Clara Amfo, Annie Mac, Aimee Phillips, Jordz, Zezi Iflore & Arielle Free – playing R&B classics and Afrobeats. Munroe Bergdorf and Griff were also a firm fixture on the dancefloor. Kate Moss had a photo shoot in a private snug.
In the small hours, groups were found gossiping in the bar’s original coal sheds – intimate private snugs redesigned with murals inside hand-painted by artists from the Royal Opera House opposite and inspired by Aubrey Beardsley, the infamous illustrator who created many erotic illustrations that accompanied Oscar Wilde’s books.
Ahead of the launch, Grimmy (and his legendary mum Eileen) tried and tested the cocktails crafted by NoMad’s award-winning mixologist from the states, Leo Robitschek and renamed them after some fitting book chapters. Drinks on the night included:
- 0161, named after the Manchester district code – Belvedere Vodka, lime, strawberry, chamomile and whey
- Little Gay Me – an Eminente Reserva Rum cocktail with spiced pumpkin, lemon, cinnamon and a very camp flourish of foliage on top
- Berlin founded craft beer NEOM, non-alcoholic sparkling rose by WILD IDOL and a new hard seltzer brand, 220
Grimmy commented on his new book: “Soft Lad isn’t chronological like a traditional memoir, starting at birth and ending with death – I’m still (at the point of writing) very much alive. I wanted to write something that had snapshots of the formative moments of my life up to now, with coming-of-age tales that capture a moment or a feeling. Some, I hope will make you laugh, and some, are emotional AF, so I’m afraid these might make you cry… They’re all honest, and unfiltered and I’m proud to be sharing them with you.”
Common Decency, NoMad, was conceptualised by Leo Robitschek and Liana Oster and designed to capture the spirit of London’s East End meeting the West End. The bar’s name references its history in conjunction with its newest iteration – the building is famously known as The Bow Street Magistrates’ Court and the Police Station where Oscar Wilde was repeatedly held for his so-called sins. During the gin craze of the 1700s, many of the people arrested and detained there were held on account of their affront to common decency. The name nods to the “crimes” of the past with an especially playful touch now a decadent destination for craft cocktails, refined snacks, fun music, and gracious hospitality.
Common Decency is open Wednesday-Saturday from 6pm-12am and 6pm-1am on Friday and Saturday.