Aqua Shard is in two parts: a smart, fine-dining, expense-account venue with magnificent views, and an attached cocktail bar with equally fabulous views, reviewed here.
Aqua Shard is itself only one part of the Aqua Group's premises set halfway up the Shard. Hutong, a fine-dining Chinese restaurant, is on the floor above (and, of course, also has terrific views).
The Aqua Group is a Hong Kong-based company, best known for its well-regarded and very stylish restaurants in Hong Kong, including the original branch of Hutong. In London they also run two attached restaurants just off Oxford Circus, Aqua Kyoto (Japanese) and Aqua Nueva (Spanish).
|Venue name:||Aqua Shard||Contact:|
31 St Thomas St
|Opening hours:||Restaurant open for breakfast 7-10.30am Mon-Fri, 9-10am Sat-Sun; lunch noon-2.45pm Mon-Fri; brunch 1-3.30pm Sat-Sun; afternoon tea 3-5pm Mon-Fri; dinner 6-11pm daily (atrium bar open noon-1am daily)|
|Transport:||Tube: London Bridge tube/rail|
|Price:||Meal for two with wine and service: around £140.|
|Do you own this business?|
Average User Rating
3.8 / 5
- 5 star:10
- 4 star:9
- 3 star:3
- 2 star:3
- 1 star:2
I had very high expectations for the Aqua Shard and I'm sorry to say that it did not quite meet any of them. Everything from the service to the food was sub par starting with the fact that we were not seated until an hour after our reservation and our water glasses smelt like rotten fish and eggs. Needless to say, we will not be coming here again. If it wasn't for the beautiful London views this would be a one star review.
As a regular restaurant user I like to think I know the good, the bad and the ugly of the experience. The Aqua Shard falls into the ugly category.
At 9:45pm there was no food or drink on our 9pm table. In fact the drinks had to be requested three times, two arrived after the first course the third shortly afterwards. The staff almost fell over themselves to advise how attentive and user friendly they were. Really? after the third personal introduction ( before anything arrived) we resolved no tip would be offered.
The first course was decidedly average the jellied ham was so poorly presented that it was likened to a pouch of cat food by the unlucky recpient. The lamb should have been a semi signature dish for the price tag. underwhelming is probably a compliment. We did not bother with dessert and were mildly amused that two of the drinks had not found their way onto the bill however the service charge had.
This was a birthday meal for one of our party and the restaurant had offered a small treat on booking which never materialised . Not a disaster and a nice view from the 31st floor but not again knowing the average quality of the food. The darkness of area was also curious, allowing for the stunning night view of London probably means turning the lights down a bit but even the waiters were holding their pads near the ceiling lights to see what they were doing!
Wow - what a disappointment. My husband and I treated our friends from out of town to a trip to Aqua Shard. When we arrived 10 minutes early for our reservation, we were taken to a table at the bar. Great. 10 minutes later we get our order in. When the waitress finished taking our drink order, the hostess came over to tell us that our table was ready. Great, we thought - we'll have our drinks served at the table. Well, not quite. We were told we should just order again at our dining table. Fine - easy enough. After a couple of minutes we were brought the drink and food menus. Then the waiter disappeared. After about 20 minutes, we decided to ask someone else. No problem - will check for you. 10 minutes later the waiter took our order - 1 bottle of wine and 1 beer (out of 3 possible selections - sure, not posh enough). 10 minutes later, no drinks. Asked someone going by. Will check. 10 minutes later, nothing. My friend then got up and went to ask the hostess. 10 minutes later, still nothing. No major apology either. My friend's husband decided to walk the two feet to the bar and ask. We'll be with you shortly. Then a few minutes later we finally got our drinks. More than an hour to get drinks for four people! Totally unacceptable! And no apologies. We then ordered 3 starters: Ham and Carrots, the Cured Makerel and the Burrata. All very average. The fish was extremely fishy and not that flavourful. The burrata was also bland. The mains were better, but for £34 - £42 for small portions, I was hoping for much more. We only ordered one dessert - the chocolate sponge cake. It was pretty tasty. Overall a poor experience that cost us £340 for 4 people. Go to the Duck and Waffle instead if you'd like to dine with a view - better food, impeccable service and much more fun atmosphere. The views from the glass elevator along the side of the building are fantastic - a bonus not available at the Shard.
Views are great, but service.....not so much. Went in early December and it was, as expected, very busy. We were shoved in a corner table near the bar and entrance to the kitchen, so we were forgotten about and barged into by busy waiters on more than one occasion. Make sure that you book a table near to the window. Food was delicious though and well worth the visit
stunning, stunning, stunning, and delicious food - kitchen people - good job !!! Front of house not quite up to your standard yet, have a word!
No introduction is needed for the tallest building in London, so having a casual drink there is a very cool thing to do by definition! Even better, this bar offers amazing views and great cocktails at reasonable prices (for London) and in combination with the lack of strict dress code and entrance fee, it is a relatively affordable and easily accessible place for anyone to visit! Great for anything from dates to business meetings and casual outings!
Average at best. You are paying for the view, which while nice on a good day, requires clear skies to appreciate. For the money, there is far better food on offer in this city.If you want to eat with a view, Duck & Waffle in Heron Tower is superior. If your priority is the enjoyment of unique and well prepared food with an attention to detail, there are so many better restaurants around.
Breathtaking view and exceptional service for every guest.
A tall gentleman from Front of House is really entertaining and polite at the same time. He is a perfect example of 5 star service! We were served by Giovanni and Chiara, who were really nice and pleasant as well.Thanks for making our night special!! Our b-day girl was really happy!
The best service and food I have received in a long time. I went for lunch. The space and view is amazing, perfect for all occasions. I would highly recommend this restaurant, very welcoming. I will be back.
Wow... Window table... Best views.... Quite sensational.... Food really tasty... Good on presentation and quantities .... Service immaculate .... Memorable in every way .... Would happily revisit tomorrow
We had such an amazing experience, We could not recommend this place highly enough.The service was just outstanding and the staff so friendly.
I went there with my parents and we felt so looked after throughout the whole evening. We had one of the manager coming at our table, greeting us and helping to decide what to pick from the Menu. We ordered some lovely wine and the food was just delicious, the lamb was superb. As soon as you get in the Shard the view is breathtaking, you really feel you are on the top of the World. Our table was facing the Tower Bridge, the Thames and St Paul all lit up, we felt blessed for being there. We had an amazing time and we cannot wait to be there again.
Came here with friends to show off the amazing London views and was pleasantly surprised by the quality of food, drinks and service. Ambiance is very modern and chique too. Loved it all around and don't miss a stroll to the loo - an experience on its own :)
incredible experience, had a very attentive waiter who looked after us all night great food and a lovely selection of wines to go with every course. The view at night is just something extra special. Will be going again very soon
The best service and food I have received in a very long time. I went for breakfast, the blue lobster muffin with scrambled egg was done to perfection. The space and view is amazing, perfect for all occasions. I would highly recommend this restaurant, very welcoming. would definitely rate it 5* and I will be back. :-)