Set on the 40th floor of Salesforce Tower (formerly Heron Tower) the famous Duck and Waffle is the highest restaurant in the UK. It is a beautiful restaurant boasting floor to ceiling windows and shows off the magnificent and ever growing London skyline. The kitchen is run by Chef Daniel Doherty, and you can find European at British cuisine here- the restaurant is open 24/7- which is pretty cool!
With a 2 month waiting list at times- it can be quite a wait before you can have a large group dinner together- and so we planned this for a special occasion.
If you take your own birthday cake to the restaurant, then you must pay £7 per person for the cutting and slicing of that cake. Otherwise you can order in advance from the restaurant (at least 24hours in advance) which can cost £45 (4-6 people) or £60 (7-10people). But I don’t know if it was the terrible service or just the restaurant itself- we had to slice and serve the cake ourself. I don’t mind doing this- but just expected better service from such a pricey restaurant.
Great service at the door and we received a friendly and warm welcome from the lady who took our coats.
We were promptly taken to our table and we ordered wine whilst we waited for one of our guests who was travelling in from Warwick.
The waitress serving our wine was friendly but I started to feel this air of ‘arrogance’ as the atmosphere around us. Our waiter unfortunately had the biggest chip on his shoulder and I wouldn’t expect this kind of service from any restaurant- let alone one of London’s most famous and highly regarded!
The concept at Duck and Waffle is sharing plates so we asked about recommendations for our group size- despite the arrogant and unhelpful waiter we ordered some breads, and a combination of small starters.
Vegetarian choice was limited and unimaginative- Jerusalem Artichoke might be in season at the moment but I don’t need to eat it for starters and main! I understand this is a meat eater restaurant, but as a revered chef it would be good to just think about the small vegetarian selection available as well!
The breads were great, looked smelled and tasted great. We had the onion jam & stilton I personally don’t like Stilton, but those that had it- really enjoyed! Instead I tucked into the ‘hand-churned butter & puglian olive oil,’ I wish I had more because the rest of the meal was quite disappointing.
The roasted jerusalem artichoke to start with was OK, the crispy polenta with truffle was lovely (appetiser) and the puy lentils were light and refreshing.
The main which was again Jerusalem artichoke in ravioli was quite good, but tasted too similar to the starter- it just had pasta around it! Nevertheless it was good- just disappointing to have the same flavours twice (I avoided the artichoke bread to start with for this reason!). The seasonal vegetables dish was just so unimaginative. It was just raw vegetables cut up and plated nicely and garnish with pumpkin seeds! The goats cheese curd was disgusting- but that might be more of a personal taste thing! However to charge £14 for a dish that has less substance than a small mixed salad is laughable.
I can’t help feeling like the restaurant doesn’t want me there- they really need to fix their service asap. Or maybe some people enjoy going there because they enjoy being served like that? I doubt this place would be so popular if it didn’t have the view. I’ve been to many fine dining restaurants, but this is the only one that I have ever felt unwelcome at. The waiter was awful and there was this atmosphere of arrogance all around. Luckily for me, I was sat with a bunch of friends that enjoy breaking bread together and having fun so I zoned out the stuffy vibes.
The views are great, but I can just go one floor below and have a better time- or I can go to Hutong at the Shard which I loved. I am still half tempted to come here again for a late night after clubbing breakfast- but I would never come back for dinner! 2.5* is the most I can give here for my rating!