Restaurant Review: The Glass Room, Bateaux London (departs from Embankment Pier)
Leisurely meandering its way along the Thames each evening, The Glass Room’s evening river cruise on board Bateaux London showcases London’s most famous riverside sights. A nautical magnet for tourists keen to soak up the city and for those with something to celebrate, an evening on board is an occasion complete with its river views, white clothed tables and live music.
Stepping on board from Embankment Pier, we’re seated with champagne and a synopsis detailing the five courses ahead of us. Food here doesn’t try to be too clever and sticks to a classic British theme, elegantly presented to remain in keeping with its setting. As we start moving so does the food – with a set menu, the dishes here aren’t particularly adventurous, however do well to present themselves in a sophisticated manner.
Rolling past Vauxhall Bridge, a ‘pea and mint veloute with coconut yogurt sumac and Cheshire cheese sable’ is welcomed. It’s late spring, and with clear skies quickly turning a blushed rose pink, we’ve lucked out are admittedly spoilt. I’m pleased for the enthusiastic American couple sat next to us as I dare to think how this evening would have turned out should the heavens have opened.
A ‘cherry tomato, caramelised onion and goat’s cheese tart with a red pepper (essence may I add) and dressed leaves’ arrives next as I point out leafy green Battersea Park to our left to the American couple grinning widely on the edge of their seats. This dish is a safe bet before a third course of ‘free range chicken ballotine with pearl barley risotto, asparagus, broad bean and jus gras’ as we’ve turned around and start to head back where we came from and down towards London Bridge.
As the night falls, a huge bright round moon reveals itself brightly above Tower Bridge. This was a special sight even for customary Londoners, and with a big enough camera would’ve made a brilliant postcard shot for the visitors around us to take home. Diners flock out onto the modest decking to secure their snapshot, sweetly pairing up as they capture their shot of the evening to take back home. Seated once again, dessert arrives: the ‘Bateaux Mess’ – a twist on a British classic and a real crowd pleaser with a mix of strawberry, basil and elderflower infused white chocolate bound with meringue. This set menu is wrapped up with some British cheeses: ‘Isle of Mull Cheddar and Colston Basset Stilton with crackers and orchard chutney.’
The Glass Room isn’t about the food, but the experience as a whole. With an all-glass structure allowing for some of London’s finest views, it is a no brain solution and takes the stress out of sightseeing if you would prefer to sit at a table with a glass of fizz rather than traipse the streets in comfortable footwear and a worn city map. Ultimately, it offers those who step on board, as they describe, and I agree – the chance to explore ‘a different perspective to London.’
Glass Room departs from Embankment Pier, Victoria Embankment, taking in the iconic sights of Big Ben, the London Eye and the Tower of London. For more information about rates and departure times, or to book, call 020 7695 1800 or visit bateauxlondon.com, or follow Bateaux London on Instagram, and Twitter @BateauxLondon.