The aptly named Fenchurch Seafood Bar & Grill (it’s located on Fenchurch street, and the menu focus is on seafood and grilled food), is situated at the very top of the new jewel in London’s skyline crown; the Walkie Talkie Skygarden. Despite the ever increasing height of London’s skyline, the Walkie Talkie is very different to the other skyscrapers dotted around the City. It not only has the mandatory sky-high restaurants, but it also features a large indoor public garden.
Open to members of the public during the day, the garden space includes a bar on the 35th floor, the more reasonably priced Darwin Brasserie on the 36th floor, and the fine dining restaurant Fenchurch Seafood & Grill on the 37th floor.
We arrived on the 35th floor to an icy cold interior and were thankful for the warmth of the restaurant. There’s no doubt that the views are impressive – from the bar and Darwin Brasserie you get almost a 360 degree view of London, with The Shard taking prime position. However from Fenchurch Grill you get a rather obscured view, as the roof’s girders are in the way.
The lobster cocktail is unimpressive for the £24 that it costs, but the scallops taste exceptionally fresh and are cooked perfectly. Desperate for a good piece of lean steak, I asked for the sirloin medium-rare and they cooked it just the way I like it, not too rare but not overcooked. The venison was flavorsome and tender, and was polished off with the assurance that it was worth every penny of the £30. Desserts rounded off the meal nicely, the warm chocolate tart deeply rich while the cheese trolley gave us a huge variety to choose from.
The New World heavy wine list was impressive, and was curated by master of wine Christopher Donaldson. As well as interesting wines, the cocktail list didn’t fail us either, with a heavy focus on whisky (it was clearly designed with the local City clientele in mind).
Although a delicious meal, it was somewhat forgettable for the price, and the absence of a view from the majority of the seating meant we probably wouldn’t return. Heron Tower and The Shard have much better options, and even Tower 42 houses Michelin-starred City Social on its 24th floor.
Average price for two people with three courses, drinks, and service charge, £250+. Reservations can be made via phone 0333 772 0020 or online.