SquareMeal Review of City Social
This elevated grill and restaurant from Jason Atherton may not be the tallest dining destination in London but the food here still reaches lofty heights. Occupying the 24th floor of Tower 42, Michelin-starred City Social is unusual among London’s high-rise dining rooms in that it sits among London’s skyscrapers, rather than looming over them – you can even spy who’s doing overtime in the office blocks opposite.
Comprising a separate bar and dining room, City Social is an attractive proposition, even if the dark-wood interiors do feel a little dated these days. While it’s mostly favoured by City workers, the low lighting and glittering skyline also make this a viable date-night option, while cosy furnishings and seating on different levels (which ensures everyone gets a good view of the dramatic skyline) are nice touches.
Classically trained chef Tom Lidakevicius (who has previously worked at Galvin at Windows and Corrigan’s) transforms familiar seasonal ingredients with confidence and finesse. To begin, decadent squid ink tortellini parcels are filled with sweet shredded lobster and cloaked in warming lobster bisque, while thick slices of tender duck breast are served alongside a subtly sharp medley of salsify and radish. Of course, you could always order from the grill too, with the accommodating and knowledgeable staff recommending the côte de bœuf to share.
When it comes to dessert, the pastry chef shows off with puddings such as a delicately assembled and refreshing pear tart that resembles a flower in bloom, with shards of meringue acting as the petals. There are afters to tempt the savoury toothed too, though, with one fan confessing they’d “go just for the cheeseboard”. If you prefer liquid desserts, City Social’s impressive leather-bound drinks list is a veritable bible of booze, with enough options to keep the even the choosiest of oenophiles happy, while cocktails are shaken up in the adjoining bar.
About City Social
Found on the 24th floor of Tower 42, right in the heart of London, City Social boasts incredible views across the city, paired with a beautiful modern British menu.
City Social is one of 18 impressive restaurants run by chef-patron Jason Atherton. Atherton started his career working alongside some great chefs, including Marco Pierre White, Nico Ladenis, Pierre Koffman and Ferran Adria, before joining Gordon Ramsay Holdings in 2001 and first opening Maze in London, before launching five further sites globally. In 2011, Atherton opened his first solo restaurant, Pollen Street Social, and now has an international restaurant portfolio.
Within the same venue as City Social, you will find Social 24, the dedicated bar space that is inspired by the famous London landmarks that surround it. As well as a terrific cocktail menu, the bar also includes a selection of beers, spirits, wines and Champagnes, along with a bar menu ideal for a relaxed bite with friends or a business lunch.
Guests can choose from a selection of City Social’s menus, the à la carte, the tasting menu – which is also available as a vegetarian option – and the vegan menu. Open for lunch and dinner, read our review for a closer look at what we thought of this central London eatery.