Words: Snita Pandoria
Le Pont de la Tour restaurants in London is situated just by Tower Bridge and has a terrace that offers stunning views overlooking the River Thames. One sunny evening we booked ourselves a table and headed down to bask in the sunshine and indulge in luxurious French Cuisine.
Within easy reach of various tube stations in the area, we decided to make the most of this fantastic location and get off a stop early to walk along the river to the restaurant whilst taking in the view of our capital city. Once we arrived at Le Pont de la Tour and checked in with reception, we were advised that there was a delay on the table. This was most probably a result of their shorter than normal table slots, as we were advised that we’d have the table for one hour 45 minutes upon booking, which is quite tight for a three-course meal. However, after a wait by the river of about 20 minutes we were taken to our table on the terrace which had the promised remarkable views of Tower Bridge.
The menu at Le Pont de la Tour focuses on traditional yet innovative French cuisine and includes dishes such as oysters, Dover sole meuniere and of course, Steak frites. Also, its one of the great places to eat in London. Their mix of well-known French dishes with the addition of modern twists makes the menu here accessible and very appealing. As is customary with luxury restaurants, we started our meal with a glass of champagne and toasted a welcome to the long delayed hot Summer days and weather, well suited to alfresco dining!
After perusing the menu, we settled on our starter of duck confit tart, served on a delicious bed of ratte potato, watercress, spring onion, and maple vinegar. The duck confit was juicy and melted in the mouth, and the addition of the potatoes added the crunch that was needed to complete the dish. We also tried the Marinated Orkney scallops, which featured ceviche scallops alongside a salad of cucumber, grapefruit and fennel and a tantalising dill emulsion that left me wanting more.
It didn’t take us long for us to work through our starters and we luckily didn’t have to wait long for our main course either. I opted for poulet fermier rôti, which included moist chicken breast, spicy chorizo, peas, black garlic aioli and sauce albufera. The flavours on the dish combined perfectly to form a scrumptious plate of food. It is so easy to overcook chicken breast and dry it out, but this certainly wasn’t the case here and I was impressed with how well it was cooked.
We also tried the Herdwick lamb chops, served with lightly roasted broccoli, rosemary, and mint jelly. Once again, the meat was prepared perfectly to retain a bite yet still be moist and juicy. Although the mint jelly was only a small part of the plate, it played a central part in bringing the dish together and along with the addition of a green side salad and some pomme frites, this was a delectable course.
The French are renowned for their finesse when it comes to desserts, and as a result we couldn’t leave without sampling it for ourselves. For our desserts we opted for crepe suzette served with poached orange and ice cream. Needless to say, it went down a treat, as the batter was light and airy and the crepes were not overly sugary.
We also tried the chocolate and hazelnut tart with milk ice cream. This was a denser dessert but equally as enjoyable, and a must for chocolate lovers. With our meal, we enjoyed wine selected by our sommelier, who specially paired our chosen dishes with wine from the menu. As well as the wine list, there is also a selection of cocktails and beers, of course Champagne on offer too.
As a result of the high-quality ingredients and dishes, the à la carte menu at Le Pont de la Tour is at the pricy end of the scale and a main course can cost between £26-£50. However, their set menu offers three courses for a fantastic £35 which is incredible value and well worth trying. Although we sat on the terrace which is located on the front of the restaurant, the interior space itself is also luxurious and inviting.
Converted from a former tea warehouse, there are leather banquettes, atmospheric lighting and a classy bar, which means even if you’re unable to secure a table on the terrace, you’ll still be in an attractive location.
All in all, Le Pont de la Tour is the perfect place for a special occasion, as the iconic setting and high-end cuisine lends itself to a celebratory meal or a treat for yourself. I’d recommend booking a table on the terrace if available during the Summer, as the views really are unrivalled.