Jason Atherton’s bow has many strings including the City Social he on the 1st of May 2014 taking over the defunct Rhodes Twenty Four: Gary Rhodes’s restaurant in business from 2003-2014 and Michelin starred in 2008. Shortly after in 2015 City Social was awarded a Michelin Star themselves and it’s located on the 24th floor of Tower 42 which means iconic views overlooking the City. Who can grumble with delectable food and having the Gherkin, The Shard and various other glamorous landmarks in sight. The Lincolnshire lad who lived in a caravan in Skegness has done good. The kitchen is also run by Head Chef Paul Walsh was a former chef at the Savoy Hotel back in 2000 and the Savoy Grill after the £220 million refurbishment. With its elegant art-deco look & feel it’s perfect for wooing clients, celebratory occasions or if you’re feeling flush.
The menu is smart and easy to follow – first impressions count and the bread also creates a good one.
The house red, a french number at £9.5 per a glass was a lovely drop.
Pig’s trotter & ham hock with crispy Lancashire black pudding, apple and Madeira £13. It’s every bit as delicious as it looks, every morsel carrying perfect seasoning and flavour. It’s a very clever take and the classic pork and apple combination, I could have eaten this dish 3 times over!
Tidenham duck breast slow cooked, am arena cherry, pistachio yogurt, five spice, dried vinegar £15. A lovely looking plate but sadly I didn’t get to try it – my fellow diner confirmed it was a tasty dish nonetheless.
Braised Irish short rib, celery, watercress and red wine sauce £36. It had a really flavourful sweet glaze on top and the textural elements nailed with the crispy onions & crumbs. You can tell the rib had a lot of technique put into it from it’s fork tenderness and those piped celery & watercress buttons look pretty don’t you think? A very executed plate of food.
Fillet steak from the grill £38 cooked mid-rare with deep purple and ruby coloured lettuce. Those triple cooked chips which I first tried in Berners Tavern were also on point.
Hazelnut plaisir sucré, chocolate syrup, milk ice cream £9.5. Chocolate top, layers of crispy pastry, fudgy almond chocolate base and creamy piped hazelnut cream. I heard mix reviews of the City Social but after eating this dessert I made up my own mind, it was a game changer and should feature in anyone’s death row desert list!
Clementine parfait, almond cake, cranberry and almond milk ice cream £9.50. Another one I didn’t try but I will live vicariously by witnessing a very clean after left by my fellow diner!
When did I go? March 2016
The damage: Expect to pay £90-£100 per head for 3 courses dishes and a bottle of nice swill.
The good: Solid accomplished cooking, iconic views and plush surroundings – Jason Atherton does it again. My favourites were the pig’s trotter dish, short rib and the hazelnut plaisir sucré, it gave me pure eating pleasure.
The bad: Not a lot!
Tower 42, Old Broad St, London EC2N 1HQ
Closest tube: Bank/Liverpool St