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All aboard the RS Hispaniola… This former Scottish passenger ferry has a permanent mooring on Victoria Embankment and on warm days its outside deck is a great spot for drinks, with prime views of the London Eye. Inside, The Upper Deck restaurant has a 1980s feel with its black-and-orange decor, but the best-of-British menu taps into plenty of current food trends – from native sourcing to heritage veg. We started with gin and tonic-cured Scottish salmon: generous slices on a pretty platter laced with slices of pickled cucumber and micro-herbs. To follow, Gloucester Old Spot pork belly came with satisfying crackling and creamy mash in a rich port sauce. Other crowd-pleasers include fish & chips, Welsh lamb shank shepherd’s pie and Aberdeen Angus sirloin steak with thick-cut chips. Desserts stick to the Blighty theme, ranging from warm cherry Bakewell to sticky toffee pudding. Helpful staff keep proceedings ship-shape.
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07 October 2013
If you're looking for a quiet restuarant with great views for a weekend evening, then the R S Hispaniola is definitely it. The staff were wonderfully helpful and attentive, they amended meals to suit our group (one gluton free and one who changed their mind after ordering), yet nothing seemed too much trouble. The restaurant itself is really rather pleasant – it is what it is, a calm restaurant with a tasty menu, with no sign of the pretentious feel of many central London restaurants. Decor was plain and simple – nothing spectacular but it allowed the real focus to be on the view of the Thames, as it should be.
We ordered from the set menu which had a great range of options, and something that really would suit everyone. A plain and simple haddock and chips was on option, alongside pork belly, or wood pigeon or grilled goats cheese salad to start. Sides were brought out quickly, even when not requested until the food had been delivered, and staff were always ready to fetch more drinks when needed.
The end of the evening saw the arrival of a rather jolly pianist – playing Happy Birthday to two tables before some cheesy romantic classics. It was so ideal for our girls night out, but wouldn't have worked for a seriously romantic meal.
I'd really recommend the R S Hispaniola Upper Deck for dinner. I'd like to think it'll always be this quiet, but once word gets around I'm sure it'll become as busy as everywhere else in London…
30 September 2013
Very pleasant meal, food a bit trendy a la television, service was good but music could have been more mellow.
Good job we checked the bill when it arrived.
12 April 2013
I went with my friend for dinner before a theatre show and when we arrived, we were offered to start with a drink in the bar. I had two courses and my friend had three and it was really good. The only thing that let it down a bit, was that there weren't that many people and that we had to ask for the theatre menu, apart from that it was a really nice restaurant and I would definitely recommend to go.
08 May 2010
R.S. Hispaniola – Dirty food & dodgy scam (tourist trap) 8th May 2010
I found a little black line that looks like an eyelash / insect leg on the calamaries at R.S. Hispaniola today at lunch time. I reported it to the barman, he called a chef – they both saw it and the chef excused that it's a piece of cotton from his blue apron. He asked the barman to give me a discount, but the food had already been fully paid for in ‘bar-style’. Second later, the chef left and the barman acted like nothing had happened. I demanded a refund for at least that dirty plate of food. The barman asked me to wait and took the “evidence” downstair. After at least 2-3 mins, another chef, a waiter and the barman came back with my plate of food – apparently, they had used all those time to REMOVE that eyelash/insect leg like object and shamelessly asked me what's wrong with the food as they couldn't see anything! I was speechless – how dishonest and disgraceful! Being a tiny girl on my own literally cornered by three big guys who are clearly dodgy; and there is hardly any other customer on the upper deck of R.S. Hispaniola at Victoria Embankment – I prioritised my safety and just left the restaurant.
Since I was misled by a 7.5 rating on a london restaurant review website, I felt obligated to tell the world about this ‘tourist trap’ – R.S. Hispaniola that serves dirty food and plays dodgy trick. What a shame on them – a gorgeous spot of a restaurant ship on the Thames in London is spoiled by a bunch of dodgy people that serves dirty food and unbelievably horrible customer service.
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