Duck & Waffle has been on my Must Eat list for far too long! I follow Dan Doherty on Instagram and always love the look of his creations in the kitchen. Why has it taken me this long to sample the fine food at Duck & Waffle? I never seem to be organised enough to book a table far enough in advance! Well, that finally changed when, as the good wife that I am, booked a table for my husbands birthday two whole months in advance. Wife points to me!
I booked a table for 8pm on a Saturday night and as I had heard many good things about the cocktails on offer from the bar we decided to get there a little early to enjoy a drink before our meal.
I had been waiting a long time to wizz up the Heron Tower in that lift and it didn’t disappoint! I went straight to the glass edge of the lift to watch us rise over London. I love views like that over citys. That is something I enjoyed on our recent trip to Bangkok. Lots of sky high bars!
There was a great buzz in the bar area as we walked through and it was quite full but we managed to nab the last table and stools. Right by the window too. Definitely felt like we were winning! The bar is actually in the middle of the room, tables line it and windows are either side to enjoy the views across London’s skyline.
We both ordered whisky sours, though mine had an added twist of truffle… I couldn’t decide if I liked it or not. It was very smooth but towards the end became a little heady for me. Definitely one to sip and enjoy slowly. At 8 on the dot we got up to take our seats at the table. You only get 1 hour 45 minutes for a booking of two so every minute counts!
Again, we were very lucky to be seated at a table right by the window. The huge open kitchen takes up one side of the dining room, with floor to ceiling windows taking the other 3 walls of the space. The views are pretty awesome. I would definitely like to come back during the day to see London in a different light.
We ordered a lovely bottle of Malbec recommended by the waitress and then began the difficult task of narrowing down our order. The menu is split into: snacks, breads, small plates and for the table. As I’ve said before I like this kind of menu where you can order a number of dishes and share amongst the table.
With so many delicious sounding items on the menu the one dish we knew we wouldn’t be ordering was the famous duck & waffle. We’d already tasted this delight of a dish at Taste of London previously. And although we thoroughly enjoyed it, we had to order some new items.
Our waitress was very helpful throughout the whole evening and talked us through the menu with some recommendations and how much to order between us, which ended up to be the perfect amount of fullness.
The huge spicy ox cheek doughnut was the first dish to come out. Covered in smoked paprika sugar and served with an apricot jam this was a great start to the meal. Sweet and savoury is always a winner for me. The spicy ox cheek worked so well with the light, fluffy, sugary doughnut.
The smoked eel with crème fraiche, horseradish and samphire was a light and refreshing dish alongside the ox cheek doughnut. At this point we saw a duck & waffle arrive to the table next to us and I wandered if we could maybe squeeze one portion in, but we still had two dishes to arrive and obviously dessert!
If there is octopus on the menu I will order it. I love it. And I’m glad we did! The roasted octopus with chorizo, crispy baby potato and pickled cucumber was cooked perfectly. The smoky octopus was firm but juicy and the pickled cucumber were a lovely addition to the dish.
I couldn’t believe it, we were starting to feel full! But the largest dish and I think perhaps the highlight of the evening was still to come. The fillet of seabass with salsify, trompettes and oyster emulsion was utterly delicious. The whole fish was served under potatoes, seaweed and the earthy sauce. It was so moreish.
Aware that we didn’t have long left on our table we finished the last of the wine and took in more of those views. Just watching all the twinkling lights and wandering what the ant-like people below are up to is one of my favourite things.
We couldn’t leave without ordering any dessert now could we, no matter how full you are there is always a little space for something sweet. We decided we couldn’t manage two desserts so ordered just one, which is meant to be shared by two – ha! The Spanish-style torrejas which were so fluffy came served in a cast-iron dish with slices of sticky caramel apple and a smooth cinnamon ice cream. It was a wonderfully indulgent way to end the meal.
Overall we had a very good meal at Duck & Waffle. The atmosphere on a Saturday night is brilliant, everyone chatting away to their friends or partners. And no one can deny those views.
It’s just a shame you have to give the table up after 1 hour 45 minutes. The prices make it more of a special occasion type of place and we would have liked just a little longer (even only 15 minutes!) on our table. We did feel it was a little rushed towards the end – we ordered quite a few plates of food and were enjoying our bottle of wine. But I suppose that goes hand-in-hand with a good and popular restaurant! Oh, and one of the lifts was out-of-order on our way down so we had to queue for about 10 minutes! Suddenly I felt very high up!
We watched the London skyline disappear as we descended to street level. I enjoyed our meal and would definitely like to come back for breakfast and I’d like to order one of every waffle please!
What’s your favourite sky high restaurant in London?
Duck & Waffle