Dinner with a view

Twilight frames St Pauls Cathedral along the river Thames in London. The view is from the Oxo Tower.

Feast your eyes at one of London’s restaurants with stunning panoramas

Butlers Wharf Chop House

Tower Bridge turns 125 this year. To celebrate you can enjoy a spectacular picture-postcard view of this iconic London landmark from the sun-trap terrace of Butlers Wharf Chop House.

The restaurant’s menu is a celebration of meaty British cuisine, with five cuts of Aberdeen Angus beef steak and a choice of six different sauces to accompany it. Crispy triple-cooked chips are an obligatory accompaniment, and the desserts are equally tempting: sticky toffee pudding, maybe, or banana cheesecake. Come hungry.

Aqua Shard

Photo credit: Paul Winch-Furness

The Shard, the glittering glass spike that towers over Southwark, has a whole host of eating and drinking options within its sleek confines. Aqua Shard is an elegant, dimly lit space where a smart crowd tucks into contemporary British cuisine as they gaze out through enormous windows at the London skyline – breathtaking after dark. The food is excellent, but it’s hard not to be distracted by this fascinating, rarely seen view of London: minuscule pedestrians, dinky buses and toytown trains snaking into London Bridge station far below.

Swan, Shakespeare’s Globe

Right next door to the famous theatre, Swan, Shakespeare’s Globe benefits from stunning views of the Thames and St Paul’s. A seat facing the window is a must; book one of the tables with prime views of the cathedral, beautifully illuminated at night. The chic, airy room is full of the chatter of diners enjoying beautifully presented modern British food: Romney Marsh lamb with curly kale and caramelised shallots, perhaps, followed by rhubarb crumble tart. Shakespeare would have approved, we’re sure.

Oxo Tower Brasserie

A familiar landmark on London’s bustling South Bank, the Oxo Tower was originally built as a power station to supply electricity for the Royal Mail, and was later bought by the manufacturers of Oxo beef stock cubes. These days, there’s a restaurant, brasserie and bar here, all eight floors up; the brasserie is our favourite for its modern British menu, open kitchen and live jazz in the evenings. On fine days, try to bag a table on the sunny terrace to enjoy sweeping views of the Thames with a cocktail in hand.

For the full article, see the 2019 BRITAIN Guide on sale here