Aqua, The Shard
When you enter Aqua in The Shard you enter into the 3 floor atrium bar in the middle on the 31st floor. This is one of the most impressive first impressions i have ever had walking into a restaurant, with all the walls being glass the views are amazing. As you can see from the photos of the view concentrating on your food is quite difficult, especially as at sunset the view is continuously changing as London started to light up.
This branch of Aqua serves contemporary British cuisine. To start i had the beef tatar with a scotched quail egg and Bloody Mary ketchup. One of the best tartars i have had, perfectly seasoned, with a running yoke in the scotched egg and nicely spiced ketchup.
For mains we had the saddle of salt marsh lamb and the pork belly which a side of mash. The lamb came with aubergine, goats cheese, red pepper, young garlic, potato fondant and lamb jus. The lamb was perfectly medium rare and melted in the mouth, the goats cheese in the aubergine was lovely and creamy and the rich jus really adding great flavour.
The pork belly, with buck-wheat pancake, spiced fruit chutney, black pudding, heirloom tomato with pork and orange jus. the pork was so tender i did not ever need the knife and all the fat and rendered out to leave just the amazing flavour of pork belly. The tomato had really flavour to it and the chutney didn’t over power the pork, but you got a hint of spice.
The mash with beef jus, was perfectly smooth and the rich beef jus made it irresistible, and it was a great accompaniment to the pork that didn’t come with a potato with the dish.
For dessert we shared the artisanal British cheese board that was as always a bit light on cheese, but never the less a great end to the meal with a glass of port.
The meal was not cheap, but the grandeur of the place with the three floor atrium and sheer wow factor makes it well worth the cost. Not a place to go every week, but if you want to go all out you can’t go wrong here.