Time Out rating:
Time Out says
Posted: Wed Aug 15 2012
Japan, Brazil and Peru come together here. That’s not an eye-opener these days, but the entrance to this expensive New York import is. Take the glass elevator that clings to the side of Heron Tower, shoot up 38 floors in a few stomach-flipping seconds, then walk into a bar from which you can practically browse workers’ emails in the Gherkin. Go on through to the double-height glasshouse of a restaurant, with its magnificent bamboo-lattice ceiling, and your table will likely face north across Spitalfields towards Alexandra Palace or east over Stepney and out to Essex. Allow time to drink in your surroundings, and maybe a cocktail or seasonal saké, while perusing a menu that will need deciphering by your well-drilled waiter, peppered as it is with terms such as ‘tiradito’, ‘taquito’, ‘moqueca’ and ‘chicharrons’. It’s all tough visual competition for a plate of food, but the sushi does its damnedest to catch the eye with cloaks of red or green yuba (soybean curd skin). Rather than leave all the fillings to battle it out in one big, bursting-at-the-seams futomaki, the Samba London roll makes a starlet of each one (crab, tuna, salmon, yellowtail, prawn, scallop, beef, avocado) by placing it on a rice-slice pedestal. With that view – impressive in daylight, awesome by night – this is a special-occasion destination; they get a lot of birthday bookings.
Sushisamba Floors 38 & 39
- Cross Street:
- Venue phone:
020 3640 7330
- Venue website:
- Opening hours:
Lunch served 11.30am-2.30pm, dinner served 5.30-11pm daily
Tube: Liverpool Street tube/rail
Main courses £8-£42
- Floors 38 & 39
- 020 3640 7330
- Floors 38 & 39
Average User Rating
2.9 / 5
- 5 star:8
- 4 star:4
- 3 star:4
- 2 star:2
- 1 star:10
Overall superb decor, views, food and service! Only downside would be the cocktails we ordered which didn't really live up to their description on the menu or their price! The wine we had with dinner was very good however. I have to disagree with other reviewers when considering the service. The service we had was excellent - ordered cocktails on arrival and these were brought promptly to our table when we were shown to it. Service from waiting staff was attentive, friendly and efficient. The food itself was excellent - we had Sashimi, Sushi rolls, pork ribs, vegetable tempura and tacquito's over the course of our meal - all were exceptional in terms of quality and flavour. As others have said it is not a destination you would head to every week or month - go for a special occasion and enjoy the surrealness of it all! Definitely would recommend a visit.
So non-plussed I can hardly be bothered to write a review. On the plus side, the lift up and the view. The decor is fairly good. On the downside, everything else. And I mean EVERYTHING! Food is little better than a Harvester restaurant thought the presentation is better. Prices are scary (£42 for three cocktails), service is poor to average, door-staff are abrasive, reservations line is a joke and customer service non-existant. If this place wasn't on a rooftop and didn't show up as one of only three ove-prices, poor quality rooftop bars in London, it'd be empty. In a place like Singapore, it'd have gon out of business shortly after it opened.
A destination restaurant with a view to die for. The food is a little middle of the road for the prices they charge, the drinks are extortionate, but this is all part of the theatre of dining 38 floors above London. It's not something you do every week, or even every month. It's somewhere to go to experience a bit of glam. The staff can be a little snooty, but when you work somewhere like sushisamba you'll no doubt start to believe the hype. Well worth a visit. Just make sure you do it in style. Save up and go crazy. I recommend the three different meats on the hot stones.
Terrible. Bar staff were slow. When the order was taken, it was then forgotten, and we had to queue all over again as if we had just arrived. Finally served, and asked for the service charge removed. Request refused. Go for the view, but not because it's a quality bar. Because it isn't. If it was ground level it would be empty.
1. Very rude behaviour at the entrance. The blond girl responsible for the reservations at the ground floor on Saturday night the 8th of June let people without reservations get in through the reservations queue whilst there were 60 other people standing waiting in the cold. At one point the bouncer realized that she let people get in without any reservation and he told her off. The bouncers preferred to send the lift half-empty with people who ‘had’ reservations instead of letting in people who were waiting at the queue. The quality of a place is always reflected on the way its bouncers behave. This is the main reason I’m not gonna visit Sushi Samba again. 2. Astonishing view is the biggest + of the bar. The space is having architectural mistakes though; it is having an impressive and original interior design but the view is blocked at many places because of unfortunate interior solutions. 3. Prices are just ok for the quality of drinks. 4. The staff was polite enough (apart from the unfortunate behavior at the entrance of course).
Awesome ride up glass elevator and breathtaking views on arrival... but terrible cocktails, quite embarassing given the cost and after queing for ages at the bar watch out for the service charge added to the bill (perhaps this is to cover the cool elevator ride up? It certainly shouldn't be charged for being served by inexperienced guys at the bar!) Waiters clear drinks before they're finished. Hope this improves ahead of the summer because the terrace looks fantastic!
Fantastic, lift journey, service, staff, drinks , views , and most of all food! Can't wait to go back for more.
I've been at sushisamba on a Thursday night with my groups of friends. The lift gives you an astonishing views from the city and as soon you arrive there's a smilie hostess to welcome you. I arrived on the 39th floor and after secure a seat at the lounge We were ready to start our night drinking. Cocktails are pricey but reasonable considering the location. However drinks unfortunately do not match the prices. I' was recommended by one of the bar lady to have strawberry daiquiry like cocktail and a few more of the cocktail list but those came up over to sugary, not well presented and not even a napkin to make up the flavour. After convinced the security to let us move one floor up we discovered a Gemma known as duck and waffle. Cocktails are great and the views are amazing! Overall sushisamba it's a great place but It should trained their staff to match up their prices!
Waited at the bar for 20 minutes ordered a cocktail from a grumpy bar man and he added service to the bill, then we take our drinks to the table only to have them take one away before finishing and at £27 for two drinks (that were awful as well, tasted purely of barcardi and coke) we don't want our drink taken away. One of us being vegetarian ordered the corn dish, it was so bland I couldn't eat it. Then again wine glass was taken away before finishing. Ordered the spicy peppers, which weren't spicy but they tried to take away before finishing, service was terrible they would literally walk past the table and swipe things off it finished or not.. Will never go back. Nice view but as it was windy they wouldn't let us outside to see anyway. Best part of the night was the lift.
Very disappointed after looking forward so much to going to Sushi Samba. After waiting 15 minutes at the bar and paying £12 for a cocktail we were charged for service as well. The cocktail ended up being a rum and coke - most expensive rum and coke I have ever had! The food was just ok, nothing special and lacked flavour and then to top it off the waiting staff kept trying to clear food and out very expensive drinks before we were finished - it was very irritating. Will not be going back there and feel let down. The only highlight was the lift journey with a fantastic view of London.
I went to Sushisamba on Friday evening. I am Peruvian and very familiar with all three types of cuisine this restaurant offers. The view really is amazing, so I would definitely recommend people go and check it out, but only for a drink at the bar. I arrived early for my reservation so had a drink at the bar. Beware people! The cocktail waitress was so overwhelmed with orders that she made a mistake on 3 bills, including mine. She overcharged me by 10 pounds and overcharged another customer by twice as much. We also had to wait a very long time at the bar. Dinner was very pleasant and the waiters really made an exceptional effort. However, food-wise I was very disappointed with what they offered. The ceviche and tiraditos were incredibly bland, which saddened me because both of these dishes are truly amazing in taste. I recommed going to Lima for better tasting nouvelle cuisine Peruvian food. The sushi itself was normal, nothing out of this world. The best dish was perhaps the tuna tataki, although not spectacular in taste either. Overall, it was a good evening but the poor food and price paid does not justify going there for dinner. The views justify going there for a cocktail though.
Loved it!! It was pretty difficult to get a reservation, but worth the wait. I will definitely be back.
I've just been trying to get a response on their reservations phone line and email address for a while and it seems nobody ever wants to pick up or respond. After trying three different times and waiting over 20 minutes on hold each time, I decided the phone reservation wasn't the way to go. The bookings email was equally non-responsive. Don't know if I'll ever get a chance to actually try their food seeing as I can't even get in touch to make a booking.
Food was great but not worth the price. I love sushi but felt this place was trying way too hard to be different. Some dishes were amazing and some were disappointing. The space, the terraces, the views, the lifts.. all amazing. The service, once past the incredibly awful hostesses (just because you work at the hottest table in town, does not mean everyone is trying to sneak in..), was very attentive and good.
Terrible.Poor service (over 30min wait for a gin&tonic when there were only 3 other people ordering &10 members of staff loitering.Food order incorrect, constant bungling. Oh &most of the bottles of wine had "sold out".The views are spectacular, the food is tasty but overpriced.go to NYC sushi samba
Excellent food, great cocktails, fantastic tea and the best views of London by far. Service every time I have visited has been impeccable
Great view, great decoration & very good quality/quantity food. Pricey but not over pricey. The waiters were very nice and dedicated (they moved us to the best table with the nice view...)We had a wonderful time and I am planning to go again soon.
such a bad service!! I went both to sushi samba as well as duck and waffle but the service really let me down! I waited for my drinks for more then half an hour! I wouldn't recommend it to anyone,better to go to Tower 42 if you want the views
Coolest place in London by far... I liked most the non-sushi plates... Great recommendations and an amazing experience
definitely one of the best of many new bars to open in the central east area recently. the mojitos were especially delicious, but to be honest views distracted us from the drinks for most of the evening
While in London for the Olympics, I learned of the opening of Sushisamba London. I had heard of Sushisamba in the States, and it has always been on my to-dine list, so I took the timie of the London opening as a sign that it was time to try it out and up the 38 stories of Heron Tower we went! We were greeted by friendly hosts, and the most beautiful views we had ever seen. We only had time to grab a drink, so we found our way to the terrace where we sat at the bar under a magnificent orange tree. We wanted to try some Sushisamba cocktails we had heard so much about. We waited for the bartender to come over. Then waited a little bit more. Once he worked his way across the crowded bar he was extremely helpful and guided our way through the menu. All in all it was the perfect way to spend an afternoon in London. Now to try Sushisamba in the states.
I don't understand the comments below, I really enjoyed my visit to SushiSamba. Great food, great drinks and amazing views. Its the best new bar I've been to in ages! I can't wait to go again.
great views AND great food. this is seriously better than most of the other high-priced London sushi restaurants... don't understand the other reviewers, esp. the comment about selfish waiters (ever been to Nobu???). I'll be back
My entire experience of this bar/restaurant was unfortunately overshadowed by the lift. It's a clear glass lift attached to the outside of the building which shoots up to the 39th floor at the rate of knots. It absolutely terrified me which I was not expecting otherwise would oviously not have got in it in the first place. I'm fine with top floor bars etc (I've been to Tower 42, the top of the Gherkin, Empire State Building etc - all were fine) but I just felt so unsafe in that lift. Anyway, it's a shame there isn't another way up otherwise I'd definitely go back. I then spent my whole time up there panicking about the lift on the way down - pathetic, I know, but it's how I felt and I just couldn't shake it off. It is fairly expensive, but you don't expect a place like that to be cheap in the first place. My boyfriend really enjoyed the food (although the lift experience had stressed me out so much, I could only manage half a starter and one glass of wine - not my usual style!) and he would definitely go back; unfortunately I definitely won't be going with him unless they build an inside lift! Kind of agree with the annoying waiter comment too... i think to say he was 'attentive' would be a massive understatement.
Annoying waiter! Very small portions, very average sushi, stupidly pricey, amazing views, will not return, very sad.
Yet Another American based and funded restaurant Chain selling over priced fusion food on the hype generated by the TV series Sex and The City on a nice location. Selfish, stingy, short sighted attitude towards superbly skilled hard-working staff it's clashing with the pretended grandeur of the restaurant. There's plenty of high class restaurants in central London to go instead.