Life is about three things folks. Food. Motorcycles. Music. They have an aura about them that can take you to places no other substitute would do, and the solitude you find in each one of them can become hypnotic.
And if you can find all of these under the same roof, a roof that once primarily used to store tobacco in the beginning of the 19th century, you do not need permission from your mother to get there.
Housed under 4 huge railway arches of the historic Tobacco Dock, is a motorcycle club called as ‘The Bike Shed’. It has a restaurant/café/lounge in London’s newest and most unique venue and flaunts some of the greatest vibes for every enthusiast of everything two-wheels. It also includes a shop, a salon, a blank canvas for private events and exhibition of the finest art and photography and custom builds adding to the sense of lifestyle and theatre.
One of the nicest thing about food is that - whatever we are doing in life, wherever we are, however busy we might be, we have to pause and devote our attention to eating. And unconsciously it uplifts our sense of satisfaction and lets you see the sunlight every single day.
Motorcycling is more of a gateway drug. A drug that will make you want to do more and more of it. It is a bombardment of senses that gives you the open air experience and an unobscured view of everything happening around you. At one stage, it will become a part of who you are and what you intend to be, a journey on which you will take on to un-becoming someone that is not really you and be the one you were meant to be in the first place.
Some people paint, some travel without knowing where they want to be, and some make and listen to music to get there. Wikipedia describes music as “an art form and cultural activity whose medium is sound and silence, which exist in time”. When sound, silence and time are used in the same sentence to describe something, it simply means that it has the potential to induce joy, happiness, memories, bliss, merriment and mirth. What else would someone want in life?
Believing in all of this with a hand on the heart is The Bike Shed Motorcycle Club. To start with, they were a bunch of motorcycle bloggers who scheduled rides and meets for various events. Nearly half a decade down the lane, they decided to open a permanent setting committed to providing an experience in itself for like-minded people in a club-like space with great food, great hospitality and comfortable surroundings filled with a warm aura to itself.
The place serves you freshly-cooked authentic British food, cocktails, mocktails, salads, detox juices and all kinds of beer along with craft beer in a charming mise en scène with exposed brickworks, stainless steel fridges and battered arm chairs. You will, however, be bathed by the presence of a few dozen custom cafe racers, scramblers, bobbers and brat style bikes in the galleries.
One cannot call a place as a café unless it serves coffee, and The Bike Shed gives you assortments of it and home-baked cakes to go with it. The place is always welcome for kids and dogs to come and share and foster the passion for motorcycles; for the kids of course. There are music bands performing every week who set up their gig amidst finest of locales inside the shops and give a whole new vibe to the restaurant.
There is also an art gallery and an exhibition area where artists alike can showcase and promote their works, photographs and builds and gain a lot of fanbase along with more than a few kind words of inspiration and appreciation. There couldn’t have been a better set-up to highlight talents and strong imagination of one’s perception. And don’t forget the salon that looks as retro and chic as the rest of the place.
All of this and more comes alive when the place also plays hosts to three huge motorcycle festivals in a year where one even takes place in a foreign country. It is all undertaken to bring together riders and non-riders from across the globe to share their passion for two wheels and custom builds and celebrating individualism in a retro-classic scenery. You will get to see some of the most stunning designs and motorcycles on this festival which includes beautifully crafted café racers, brat-style scramblers and a vast catalogue of bespoke builds. Art and Photography also share the same space along with electric bikes. One will get to see a whole different culture in these events that define what we know as ‘underground biking scene’.
For the rest of the days, you can browse through their shop that has all the gear you can find online and are specially handpicked by them. Apparel and accessories. Limited edition and new products will often be features in their stores from both well-known brands and newcomers. Helmets, jewellery, wallets, watches, jackets, duffel, belts, goggles are just a few to satisfy the shopper in anybody and everybody.
To be part of this club vibe, one can also opt to become a member of this club and enjoy special treatments at the restaurant and the shop. You could as well get free entry to their big-ticket events and more. Above all, you get to be a part of something unique who appreciate the same passion you have. Find out more about its perks and levels of membership at their website: http://thebikeshed.cc/membership/
All people working and associated with this are lifelong motorcyclists, dedicated to creating the perfect space for all those interested in two wheels and adding to this pompadour is the growing new wave of the custom motorcycle community, which has now evolved into a proper Lifestyle motorcycle category. With them promoting art, photography and music, it all comes in together to celebrating a notion called motorcycling.
The next time you visit London, make this your most important item on your itinerary and go catch people sharing the same comradery, emotion and excitement you have. If I had access to a place like this, you would find me here anytime of the day indulging in the finer things of life. There is literally no better setting for me to sit and write articles on motorcycles, and I would make it my crib for just about anything and everything.
Go…Get to know yourself.