7 August 2013

Aqua Shard - Birthday Celebrations Pt 3

I am officially two years older than thirty!

Following a wonderful week of very fun celebrations, this was my actual birthday. I opened my cards and presents, had a visit from my Dad, made copious cups of tea for the builders working on my house, visited a gorgeous newborn baby and was then taken out by Alex for dinner at an exciting new restaurant.

My birthday outfit of choice was a black top and pink skirt, both from Lipsy.

Aqua Shard serves British cuisine and is part of the Aqua Restaurant Group who are responsible for Aqua Kyoto, Aqua Neuva and Aqua Spirit on Regent Street.

From the lobby of The Shard building, we took the lift to the 32nd floor where we were met by some rather moody looking female greeters who sized us up and one of which ticked Alex off for wearing trainers (smart trainers, I must say). Feeling a little unwelcome, we were led to a huge glass staircase that took us down to the 31st floor.

Quite a view. It's certainly a dramatic entrance!

The space is huge with two separate bar areas. It definitely optimizes the 180 degree panoramic views over London through the floor to ceiling windows. 

We were given a perfect table that overlooked London Bridge and St Paul's Cathedral.

We studied the menu as we munched on the crusty fresh bread and butter. 

There is a really good variety of dishes; nothing overly fancy or pretentious. I decided upon the handcut Rose County Beef (served raw) with spicy mayonnaise, Bloody Mary jelly and - the decider for me - a Scotch egg. I love a Scotch egg and I hoped the yolk was runny!

Steak tartar or anything raw is not something I would normally order but as a combination, I couldn't resist trying this dish. I wasn't disappointed...it was excellent. The beef was very favourful and the delicious egg was perfectly cooked. No over-cooked yolks here!

Alex's starter - which typically of my husband was actually a main course - was the Rhug Estate salt marsh lamb saddle with goat's cheese & fondant potato. He was also very impressed. The lamb looked so soft and tender that for a moment I thought it was foie gras

At this point I must mention the Battenberg Martini - vanilla vodka, apricot brandy, Rubis chocolate wine, apricot jam, almond syrup, tea tincture, egg white and lime juice. With a mini battenburg on the side of the glass! It was one of the nicest cocktails I've had in quite a while. 

For my main course, I ordered the lobster lemon balm with Barwhey's cheddar, a spinach & ginger ravioli and mango & redcurrant salad. 

We had side dishes of grilled corn on the cob and mashed potato

The juicy lobster was gorgeous and I was secretly relieved it was served out of its shell! The ravioli and salad were a tasty accompaniment but I could have eaten a little more of both. Luckily the side dishes were there to put this issue right. The creamy and ultra-buttery mash potato was particularly good. 

But there was, of course, still room for dessert. We decided to share the Blackcurrant Cheesecake which was presented beautifully and tasted delightful. 

And they even remembered my birthday! Very sweet of them! (if a little stingy with the edible bits)

As I blew out my candle, I wished for more food!

Only joking! We were nicely full by the end of the meal which we both greatly enjoyed. Nobody can take away from the sheer impressiveness of the venue and it was a joy to find that the food matched up.

Perhaps the service could have been a little friendlier but I'll write that off as new-restaurant jitters (and the fact that Alex was wearing trainers!).

Lastly, let me show you the ladies toilets. How's this for a view as you walk through the doors?

I couldn't resist doing a selfie in the funky mirror

Overall, a really lovely experience at Aqua Shard. Okay, I probably did prefer Duck & Waffle for food, value and service but there's not really a lot in it. Both are a great choice for a special occasion.

The sun was setting on a wonderful birthday.

Until next year!
Aqua Shard
Bar Service
Waiter Service

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  1. Looks absolutely gorgeous, as do you of course! :) happy birthday! xoxo

    The perks of being a hipster

    1. Thank you Cate! 32....starting to feel old now....

  2. mnnmm I love steak tartar! Matt always finds it a bit weird that I'm eating raw meat but i can't help it, it tastes so delicious! I've been to Duck& Waffle but never aqua shard. Seems like it was a great little birthday meal spot =)

    Teffy || Teffys Perks Blog


    1. It's definitely a great date spot. Aw, I love D&W, want to go again soon.


  3. What a view and that had to be the best table in the house!


  4. What an amazing view! Looks like it's worth the trip just to see such a great city scape, let alone the food,

    Lucy x

  5. Those photographs are adorable and you look so gorgeous!

    WEBSITE: www.Fashion-with-Style.com

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  6. Love the outfit and food looks so yummy! Thanks for sharing!


  7. Hi, me and a few friends actually went here last night for cockails to celebrate a birthday! The staff must have changed as everyone was really nice and friendly with us last night. Seeing your photos of the food has made me want to go again but this time for a meal too! And I couldnt help letting out a little squeal when i walked into the toilets, I really wasn't expecting that view! I love your outfit and photos! You now have a new follower!
    Laura x

    1. Hi Laura! I'm pleased to hear you had nice staff when you had your cocktails. Ours were okay but they weren't particularly friendly! Maybe it was just an 'off' day! The toilets are amazing eh?

      So glad you're following my blog; going to check yours out now :)


  8. Oooh a Battenberg cocktail, what a cute idea!
    All that food is so beautifully presented, so perfect for such a great location.
    Happy birthday
    x x x

    {The Lobster & Me}

  9. That. Cocktail. As soon as I read the words 'Battenberg cocktail', I opened another tab and got Googling for a recipe! What an amazing idea :)

    Looks like a stunning meal, definitely going on the restaurant wishlist!



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