The traffic-free piazza surrounding the much-ogled Gherkin means that this contemporary offshoot of the Balls Brothers chain can spread itself across one of the City’s biggest outdoor terraces. Sun worship aside, it’s a lively spot, curving around the base of the building on two levels with smart livery & a huge glass area for impact. There are 50 wines & Champagnes on the wine list, from sub-£20 Italian offerings to a bonus-busting Louis Roederer Cristal ’02 at a cool £222.50. Cocktail sippers are also well served with an assortment of classics (with or without a ‘twist’) & more outré concoctions such as the monster ink (Bacardi, Archers, Eristoff Black & Monster energy drink). Big as it is, The Sterling can feel pinched if it rains & the fresh-air fiends make a dash for shelter.
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