Gong by Shangri-La at The Shard

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Square Meal Review of Gong by Shangri-La at The Shard ?

Greeters dressed in Soviet-grey garb dispatch you on a two-lift trip up to Gong – London’s highest sky-lounge located on Level 52 of The Shard. Of course the views are intoxicating – although we were underwhelmed by the flashy, but oddly cheap-looking “Beijing via Basingstoke” decor. The ill-advised layout creates a bottleneck, while uncomfortable low stools and loud 80s Muzak make for a slightly enervating experience that isn’t helped by muddled service (early days, admittedly). Cocktails range from skilfully made classics to dramatic mixes such as a Dodd’s gin martinez manqué presented in a billow of rosemary-infused smoke or a well-balanced Talisker whisky, honey, lime and sherry sling served bizarrely with a scraping of blue cheese on a dry cracker. “Crackers” might also describe the confusingly named ‘tapas’ platter, in reality a strange selection of open mini-sandwiches. Great views and fair drinks aside, we feel that Gong could do much better.

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