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|Address:||Level 32, The Shard, 31 St Thomas Street, London SE1 9SY|
|Tel:||020 7268 6700|
|Price: £68.00||Wine: £26.00||Champagne: £56.00|
|Opening Hours:||Mon-Sun 12N-2.30pm (Sat-Sun -3pm) 6-10.30pm|
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Lunch for 4 blokes on a day out in London.
The website is a bit poncy, and uninformative – no sample menus or description of the 2 rooms. On phoning you have to choose between the Restaurant and Lounge with little prior knowledge. I chose the fixed price lunch in the Lounge (£29).
On arrival you need to spot the ‘oblix’ sign written on a pillar that gives access to the tastefully lit lobby with 2 ladies to re-assure you that you have come to the right place. A rapid lift ride takes you up to a tastefully lit passageway where your coats can be left, and then you are escorted to the eating area.
Fortunately ‘tastefully lit’ gives way to daylight with great open views of the Thames and a friendly atmosphere. Our waitress was great.
The first course buffet had lots of tasty options, and you are encouraged to go back for more. There were 4 mains, all good, and then a limited but tasty range of puddings. Excellent bread and butter pudding.
It is correct that the internal decor is not imaginative, but the seating is comfortable and this is all about the view out, with the Tower of London and Tower Bridge just to your left and the City of London with the Gerkin and friends straight ahead.
12.5% ‘discretionary service charge’ is added to the bill, but this still gave us an excellent lunch for only £13 more than it would have cost to go to the viewing platform. True, you don't get a view to the West, but hey ho.The wines are expensive, but optional!
The only hiccup once we got into the restaurant was that, although our main courses were booked before we went for the buffet, they were late arriving. If you are under time pressure, mention it to your server.
Excellent for what we wanted.