Following on from our previous visit to London (here and here), my lovely friends decided to treat me to a special meal for my 30th birthday as well as a pre-wedding celebration. I was told the dress code was smart casual, so I made doubly sure to bring something a bit more dressy.
Little did I know that we were headed up to the 31st floor of The Shard (previously known as the London Bridge Tower) on the banks of London Bridge.
Aqua Shard, the restaurant, offers panoramic views of the city of London’s skyline. From the moment you step through the revolving glass doors on the ground floor of The Shard, you are cordially greeted and directed to the restaurant every step of the way – you don’t need to do a thing (including press any buttons in the lift) and you’re greeted by a beautifully drawn map of the view you can anticipate to see when you’re seated at the restaurant. You can guarantee the moment you step foot into the restaurant, you know you’ll be treated to a great experience. With the tasteful decor and exquisite view, enjoy the dining experience.
If that wasn’t enough, you’ll be treated to a marvellous view while you’re visiting the ladies’ too!
360° panoramic view from every angle indeed!
We settled down to peruse the Sunday brunch menu which was truly lavish. We were there for Sunday brunch and I don’t think I’ve ever had so much good food in one meal! First off, we decided to treat ourselves to some truly delicious non-alcoholic drinks.
Clockwise from top left: Banana Pick Me Up (fresh banana, hazelnut milk, Nutella, peanut butter and pancake), Pineapple Burst (lemon curd, egg white, fresh pineapple, lemon juice, agave nectar and poppy seeds) and Planet Earl (blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, Greek style yoghurt, honey and apple juice)
There was so much choice with each course that it was hard to decide. In case you have any allergies or dietary requirements, the restaurant has helpfully coded each dish to let you know which dishes may contain ingredients which may not be suitable for you.
We all decided on the same starter:
Lobster Benedict (Colchester blue lobster with poached egg, a toasted English muffin and Hollandaise sauce)
It couldn’t get any more decadent than having lobster served with a simple breakfast of poached egg on an Englihs muffin with Hollandaise sauce…and it gets even more indulgent!
Roast pork belly with Yorkshire pudding, duck fat potatoes, young celeriac, sautéed greens, pineapple-mint sauce and proper gravy
Beef rump with Welsh egg (fried free-range egg), grilled mushroom, Staffordshire black pudding and Oxheart tomato
First lobster, then steak for a main course – all for brunch too! My friends had ordered lamb, unfortunately it seemed to be the popular main course dish so they switched to pork belly instead. The food was well prepared and I couldn’t have been happier with the taste or the portion sizes which weren’t too big or too small – it was just right.
Next up, the dessert:
Soft jelly of rare fruits with sticky lemon cake and Madagascan vanilla ice cream
Caramelised milk chocolate mousse with blood orange sorbet
Our experience was truly a visit to remember and if I ever need a table booked for a special occasion when in London, I know where to go now!
Aqua Shard is on the 31st floor of The Shard building at 31 St Thomas Street, London SE1 9RY. The restaurant is open 7:00 to 10:30am and 12:00 to 10:45pm Monday to Friday; and 9:00am to 3:30pm for breakfast and brunch, then 6:00pm to 10:45pm for dinner on weekends.
For any enquiries, phone 020 3011 1256 or to make a reservation for a meal, use their online booking system