I always believe that there are several elements to a good restaurant dining experience: food (well obviously!), view, service and ambience. It's rare to find a place that delivers on all four, but Sushi Samba does the first two pretty darn well.
I love being high up and this places offers an amazing view of London in a spot that I have never really looked down on before. I went for lunch with a friend and we spent 80% of our time simply looking out of the bar window and pointing things out.
We sat inside in the bar as a) it was a pretty cold day and b) we had no reservation. In fact we didn't even speak to anyone as we entered - we just sat down at the bar around the sushi making area, and they seemed to just let us.
The service was indifferent. Perhaps it is better in the main dining room (or if you don't just come in and help yourselves!) but we had to summon our waiter every single time and sometimes that involved actually going over to him.
We only wanted a couple of dishes to share and a cheeky cocktail or two. We had the edamame, the rock shrimp tempura, yellowtail sashimi and teriyaki steak. I loved everything but the steak - it was a little tough. We also ordered a couple of cocktails. Well ok, a couple each...
We were hurried out of our seats as the last mouthful disappeared and asked to move to the bar - a bit rich when I consider that the bill came to a whopping £120 for the two of us.
Yes it is expensive! Very very expensive, and I'm not sure I would do it again. We spent £60 a head and left a little hungry and still perfectly sober!
Delicious cocktails and beautiful outdoor bar. The only painful part is the price, but what do you expect when you ride a lift 39 floors to get to the place?
I admit I haven't eaten here yet. I've only bummed around at the bar. The mango cocktail is delicious. There's one bartender who's hilarious, and if you tip them and chat with them, they are more than willing to pour what's left in the shaker into a separate glass for you or top you off with an extra splash of liquor.
I loved my experience here. The service was excellent, the food was amazing, and the VIEW was breathtaking!
The entire experience is pretty cool, even beginning at the lift... Which moves surprisingly fast. The decor is trendy but really beautiful.
I would highly recommend the pork ribs, Sao Paolo roll, and shrimp tempura. I was still thinking about the ribs the day after... They were THAT good. I wasn't too impressed by the ceviche so maybe skip it and order another portion of ribs. :)
Sushi Samba is pricey but it's definitely worth it for a special occasion. I can't wait to come back!
We managed to bag a reservation to this place and took our parents to show them the sights and try the food we had heard so much about.
Everyone knows where this place is, so I won't harp on about the view, suffice to say its of London in panoramic and it's amazing.
The restaurant is funky and modern, seating is comfortable and in most you can make the most of the view. The staff are all top notch, very quick and attentive and they know the menu! (To me this is what separates some restaurants from others, invest in your staff)
We went for a selection of food, some sushi, mains and starters. The food is all interesting with the fusion aspect. Mostly ordered on recommendations.
Everything we had was very tasty. Although I loved the overall experience I couldn't help think that you are paying for an experience rather than the food, and there is no point denying that it's expensive to eat here!! To be completely honest I've had better food in other Japanese fusion restaurants..... But not always the service, and never that view (apart from duck and waffle, lol)
I'm never going to be a regular here but I'd definitely come back if invited.
Visited for birthday drinks, really wanted to have dinner but apparently you need reservations a month in advance for big groups, so fyi. The view did not disappoint and the ride up the glass escalator was worth it. Actually two of my friends were starving and were able to score a small table on the spot.
There's nowhere to sit really so don't wear your 5 inch heels and it took us ages to get drinks. The all female bartenders kept passing up us ladies for the handsome men, can't blame them. However, once I complained and said it was my birthday they made me this delicious fruity drink on the house so it kind of made up for it. I'd love to come back soon with a smaller group to eat and next time will send one of the guys to secure drinks.
I could not believe the look I got when I tried to go and eat in this place. It was absolutely ludicrous!
Me and my friend went to go and eat here, with it supposedly having the best rooftop view as it is 43 floors up above the ground, I really wanted to see it.
When we arrived at the door, the girls before us, dressed in heels and their hair done etc, were smiled at and spoke to nicely. They didn't have a reservation but they were allowed to go inside.
However, me and my friend behind were not allowed in, because we didn't have a reservation and from the look that she gave us (swift full body check out) she didn't think we looked suitable to go inside. I was so angry, we had been struggling to find it all day in London, and when we got there, this happened! I shall not be trying again.
As is clear, would not recommend to anyone of working class, unless you wear your best clothes.
Awesome location on the 37th floor. Amazing venue to entertain clients. Book well in advance.
Enjoyed drinks on the outside terrace overlooking the city before sitting down to
dinner. Set menu for 15 people, food was excellent, well prepared and tasted great.
The service could have been a little better considering the size of our party but a fantastic venue and fantastic food. Highly recommended.
I like to look down on people.
Sushisamba is one awesome place at which to do so. This is really just a review for the views, which were spectacular. I didn't eat, just came for a drink. And a sneer.
Eff it's a grand skyline from up there, worth seeing. The glass elevator ride alone made me giggle.
So go check it out. Great for visiting company or just that good ole craving for the feeling of superiority that comes from knowing you're higher than over 99% of the rest of London and its inhabitants. At 230 meters, Heron Tower is the third tallest building in London. So there.
The lift up to Sushi Samba on the top floors of the Heron tower is quite an experience as it shoots upwards above the office buildings and the whole city of London comes into view from above. Some surprisingly narrow corridors connect from the lift to the restaurant. First a bar area with sushi counter plus large outdoor terrace with a big tree in the centre. Another few paces around the corner takes you to the restaurant proper which is quite light and airy with another outside terrace. The view is amazing.
I've been to Sushi Samba in New York several times and it was one of my favourite places to eat there so was interested to try the London location. Not as easy to get a reservation in London vs. NYC where we had just been able to walk in if early enough in the evening but I think it's more of a destination restaurant here with the high up location. The early evening crowd was a mix, youngish with money to flaunt, some people in for the occasion.
We were seated right away and ordered. We sampled the rock shrimp tempura, the asparagus and flank steak with Peruvian corn and also the calamari with plantain. These were 'small plates' as almost everything seems to be now but actually varied in size from the shrimp and calamari (largish portions) to the steak (small). The shrimp tempura was good but a bit heavy with the mayo dressing which detracted from the crispiness. Calamari was good and the flank steak was OK but not too exciting.
Our small group ordered 4 different samba rolls. Visually very pretty (see pic) and nicely arranged on a large platter. Overall pretty good with some interesting combinations and textures. We all enjoyed the rolls but maybe a little too much going on. Heavy on salty flavours and a bit too much mayo toppings. Quite fun to eat but don't order too many like we did. I know it's a fusion concept and not Japanese sushi but busier, bolder, saltier and heavier. I like the taste and texture combinations but we started to wonder if it really had that super freshness of the fish which is critical since it was masked by everything else. We needed more picked ginger to counteract everything else. The wasabi was nice, coarse and not fiery as usual. Maybe this was real wasabi and not the intense green horseradish/ mustard combo which I think I am used to?
They do have 'regular' nigiri and sashimi on the menu so maybe a good choice to have one or two rolls and some more standard sushi alongside.
Service was polite and efficient. Cost was around £55 / head so not cheap. Good and interesting dishes but not quite as good as the NYC W. Village branch which was also better value. I'd come back to bring visitors for a fun dinner but not especially for the food alone.
I veer between 3 - 3.5 stars based on the food / value but overall 4 stars for the whole experience.
Place2be high up in the sky but lacking service mentality.
You should call and make a reservation to shortcut the queue at the entrance.
Four stars for the lift, the views and the terrace. Three stars for the staff - although, to be fair, they do have to deal with more than their fair share of half-wits. Two stars for the price - ouch!
Things have been tidied up recently - as the facilities were starting to look like they had received the foot-fall of the the cast of Ben Hur on a daily basis (which they probably do). There is very little seating inside - probably to discourage the tourists (which doesn't work), and you'll need to avoid the rush hours (lunchtime and 15:45 on) to be in with a chance of sitting outside.
The outdoor terrace faces the wrong way - North, but the inside view South and South-West is stunning ....... until they put a couple more sky-scrapers around Heron Tower.
I love this place but my wallet doesn't.
What's not to like, dinning in the sky, drinking under a large 'orange' tree, outside on the 39th floor?
The food is wonderful and made for sharing. It mixes things up lovely and the wine list if excellent.
All in all, a wonderful experience / destination restaurant.
Been here a couple times for drinks and once for a meal. Food is average, but the wow factor is the view from the 39th floor.
My experience with the bouncers downstairs at Heron Tower is that they're just there for crowd control (wait, I guess like typical bouncers). They may not let you in if you state that you don't have a reservation, or tell you to call some random phone number. If you state that you do have a reservation, however, they have no way of verifying it and just let you up.
The lounge area is a nice place to hang out and bringing out-of-towners to see the amazing view from the giant windows. The lounge is also open quite late, so a good place to head to if you're finishing a late dinner somewhere and want to head out for drinks without being bothered to move twice.
The food is pretty standard for showy "fusion" Japanese (think: Roka, Zuma, Aqua Kyoto) with South American influences. Pricey and nothing very memorable. I've eaten at the Sushi Samba at Park Ave in NY and thought the same.
The focus if you're coming here, though, is not the food, but the ambiance. A good place to impress guests/clients from out of town.
I really wasn't impressed with Sushi Samba, we walked in, were told we could only sit at the bar to wait for a table, (that this was full), then when we found this uncomfortable, to try the duck and waffle restaurant upstairs. They suggested we try the middle floor, who apparently had space, but sent us to the first floor as both floor restaurants were the same company, and we were then taken to the middle floor which was void of people!
The sushi was okay - We ordered the London and the São Paulo Samba rolls and edamame, but weren't that impressed or i personally didn't find anything outstanding about the meal.
It was overpriced and you only got a few pieces for each roll - at about £15-£16 a roll, I thought this was a bit of a rip off if I'm going to be honest. There are so many lovely sushi restaurants around London of far better quality and value.
I wouldn't mind if we were paying for the view, but the window was hazed up with moisture which gave London a very 'diffused' focus.
I did like the with love from Rio desert, but for £12 a pop, you're going to be expecting some nice flavours going on.
Not somewhere that I would try again. I wasn't keen on the atmosphere, price or food.
However on that note, the Heron tower itself is very much worth a visit, being one of my favourite places in London, although next time I'll stick to just having a cocktail at the bar or check out the duck and waffle!
I've been fighting with myself as to whether to write this or not, as we didn't actually get a chance to eat here, and have decided to just write a short review detailing our experience, making it clear that we did NOT eat or even drink here. I also want to make it clear that we would have loved to until we experienced the service.
Upon arriving, we were greeted by the rudest doorman I've ever met. I'm sure he isn't called a doorman and I'm sure that isn't his full job, but during the entire time we were here, that's what he was doing... opening the door and demanding to know what people were there for. I've never seen anything like it. We told him our reason for being there and he was just plain rude, telling us to wait to the side and he would call the manager to 'deal' with us. I'm sorry, what?
After about 15 minutes, during which we weren't given a single look, the manager came down and was a breath of fresh air after the icy reception we'd had so far. He's the only reason I'm giving this place anything at all. He escorted us upstairs and allowed us to take a picture of the view and was courteous, friendly and welcoming. The staff in the restaurant itself were also very polite and now we're considering making a reservation for my birthday in April (if we make one now, we just might get a table, that's how long the wait is).
It's just a shame that the first point of contact with this restaurant is so bad. A real shame. We'll have to see if the actual dining experience makes up for it another time.
Fantastic Cocktail,Amazing Views.Great Bar,but sadly the food is average and seriously overpriced.If your looking to take a date,on a clear sunny day in London,there really isn't anywhere with better views or ambiance.My hot food dishes came out in all different temperatures.
I'm a little torn on my rating, because if it was just me, I would have given it 3 stars. However, my friends were raving about their food and asked me whether it was "4 or 5 yelp stars" (not sure it's a good thing that I'm now notorious for yelping?), so I'm going to give the place the benefit of the doubt that I just ordered poorly. Overall, it was an awesome place to visit once -- I just don't think I'd go back, except perhaps for drinks.
Atmosphere: Over-the-top, stunning, trendy. The views are great, the crowd is well-dressed, the orange tree outside is just plain cool. 4.75 stars. (It loses 0.25 stars on decidedly strange music choices).
Service: Besides the grumpy doorman, excellent. Surprisingly we were seated as soon as we arrived for our Sunday evening reservation. 4 stars.
Cocktails: Eh. Two of us ordered them, both of us were underwhelmed. Mine tasted like juice, hers was too strongly flavored with an odd mix of flavors. They were really pretty, but not worth the 12-13 quid. 2.5 stars; I'd try a different one to have an excuse to come back for the views.
Food: I had the calamari as a first course, and it was excellent. Delicious sauce and mixture of fresh onions and tomatoes as well. I was really, really excited for the second dish and dessert after this...unfortunately, neither of my other two dishes were at the same level. The foie gras sushi, while creative and quite "cute", had far too much rice compared to the other ingredients (plus, there were only 4 little pieces in the roll). The dessert was a stunning display of chocolate mousse, sorbet, and flourishes, but all the actual flavors were just average. However, my friends really enjoyed their sushi and dessert choices (including the ezo and the strawberry maki for sushi, as well as pretty much every dessert on the menu), so I'm guessing that I just was unlucky. (Or I'm just more critical!) So 3-4 stars on food, depending on who you ask.
Price: Bad, but you're paying as much for the view as anything else, and it wasn't unreasonable given that it's obviously an upmarket place. Two dishes + cocktail was 55 for me.
All-in-all, it's a scene that's definitely worth checking out at least once, but don't expect it to be the meal of the century.
Tip: We had to book several weeks in advance for a table for 5 on a Sunday night, so keep that in mind.
It's very good sushi, not the best I've ever had but the ambiance of the place paired with the quality food is what makes it 5 stars. The view, the music, the drinks, and the rooftop bar is not to be missed.
Only came for cocktails. Amazing views of London. Crowded. Rich Hipster central. The cocktails are pretty overpriced for what they are, but I guess you're paying for the view.
I ordered a dirty martini and PAID for it only to be told ~5-10 minutes later that they had no olives or olive juice. Maybe I am wrong but I feel like a martini is a pretty standard cocktail for a cocktail bar.
Like I said, great views.
You take a glass elevator all the way up (people who are bad with heights should probably look not look). There is a line on the ground level but if you have reservations, they let you right up. The place is lively and busy, even early. The view from the top is amazing and the whole place is beautiful and almost surreal. The food was better than I expected, but that is not why I suspect most people go there.
I am in looooove !!!!
the views.... the food...the cocktails!
I can't even describe this place!......
the prices :(
I'm so in love with this place I just need to get a better job so I can come here once a week! Right now its about once or twice a year I can come here. The restaurant has amazing views over all of London its at the top of a very tall sky scrapper. Book in advance as booking fills up weeks before hand. This place is a must try!
I gotta say, I had no expectations at all, it by far was one the best places I have been to in London, the food was amazing, ambience and interior is very good, waiters were attentive and the view was just so incredible.
I also gotta point out, price wise it's very good and reasonable. :)
I wasn't majorly impressed with this place, so I'll keep it brief.
The wait time was ridiculous - we had a booking and showed up on time, but still had to wait a whole 45 minutes before being seated. This meant that I spent a lot more than I intended to, because I bought two of their overpriced cocktails before I'd even had a chance to look at the menu.
The food was good, but it was also very overpriced and the service bordered on awful. When we complained about a mixup that meant one of our party had eaten a dish intended for two people and we had to order an extra one, one of the managers actually laughed in our faces. Eventually we got the discount that we requested, but we were made to feel awkward and, considering we had spent a lot of money, it seemed petty to behave so rudely when we had made a perfectly reasonable request - the mistake was theirs, not ours.
Yes, the views are fantastic, but I'd rather go somewhere with a better vibe. I imagine that this place will ride the wave of hype for a while, but most people I know who have been there have been unimpressed by the rude staff and greedy management. The fusion food isn't particularly innovative, either.
I was here on 09-03-14. This place is extremely overrated. I ordered the SAO PAULO roll and a 100ml glass of Saki. I expected something impressive, but it was mediocre for £35. The hostesses didn't smile and were not very helpful. The elevator ride to the 39th floor is nice, great views. I'm not at all interested in going back.
There are 2 things (amongst many) that I adore in life: amazing views, and sushi. I must admit that my better half did a very good combo when booking a table at Sushi Samba for our anniversary - however reading the reviews here, I got a bit scared.
So yeah, it is in the higher price range (150£ for 2 based on 7 dishes, 2 wine glasses and 2 cocktails), and is definitely a hype place full of people speaking Russian with a bit of bling and shiny jewelry. But... we kind of expected that, right?
Globally, our experience at Sushi Samba was amazing, and the wow effect starts as soon as you shoot up to the 38th floor while having a view over the City. The decoration fits what it says on the tin: a weird mix between Asian and South American with an orange tang to it all. Service was what one could expect in these kind of restaurants - maybe a wee over serviced to my taste.
But the most important in all that is that... OMG THE FOOD WAS AMAZING!
Dishes are bold, exotic and a bit extravagant. The products are extremely fresh, tasty and set up with some surprising associations, such as sushi on a bed of pumpkin mousse, mozzarella with salmon on rolls. A bit on the small side, but that also encourages you to take the time and really enjoy the various flavours you get.
Desert on my end (cheesecake) was a bit of a disappointment compared to the main dishes, so just try something else - or just skip the desert and treat yourself to a sake :)
So in a nutshell - go there to impress, or for a culinary experience
- The setting - dinner on the 38th floor definitely has a wow effect
- The dishes. Just for the food itself. Sushi samba was worth the experience.
- The company, but that doesn't really count in a Yelp review
The less positives:
- I can't take a point down for the posh/snobby side - as that is what one would expect. However it lacked a bit of cosiness and felt a bit cold.
- The cocktails were a bit on the mean side for the price, and the desert was a bit bland even if it looked impressive.
I will definitely go back, and focus the budget on the main courses. And probably over the summer to have a closer look at the view :)
Spectacular view, great food. Second time here, I find the staff very attentive and quick.. No trace of slow or unfriendly service. I agree that the ambience and atmosphere is very elite.. Which is reflected in the price.
Still a very nice place - especially if you want to impress someone special ;)
This is a rip off joint. Sickly sweet drinks packed with ice to cater to kids using their parent's credit card to feel "grown up" and "kewl", when they aren't experienced enough to know that they are being duped. The staff are a bunch of amateurs who think it's ok to be a jerk. Don't bother, London has other venues with good views.
Sushisamba has breathtaking views of the London skyline but the visuals are not enough to excuse indifferent service and shockingly mediocre sushi at outrageous prices.
My wife and I arrived at Sushisamba but still had to wait an inexplicable fifteen minutes for a table while the dining room sat mostly empty.
The best views in the restaurant are from the bar where the top of the Gherkin Building is at eye level. This alone might justify a trip up to the restaurant, but stay in the bar and pay for a beer to absorb the sights.
When we finally got to our table, we ordered the large omakase for £55. Omakase is supposed to be a series of sushi pieces of the chef's selection designed to highlight the freshest fish available. Instead, we received what was basically a chirashi bowl of salmon, tuna, shrimp and other sashimi pieces so typical they could have been ordered off of the lunch menu of any sushi restaurant in any city for a quarter the price. Many of the pieces were bland and not fresh.
Despite the beautiful views, SushiSamba was a highly disappointing experience.
My last visit to the 39th floor left me with one conclusion - come back on someone else's dime! Good cocktails, well-dressed peeps (esp my date and me obviously), and stunning views (seriously, the lift launches you up towards the skies and WOWser). But the drinks, and more so the sushi, were overpriced for the slow service and what we got.
I've waited for an excuse to go back, so jumped at a work drinks event here last week. This time we hit the 38th floor outdoor terrace to catch the fleeting British summer. It faces north-east-ish (so go for a wander to see the City skyline on the other side) but I had fun trying to spot my flat out towards the Olympic Stadium!
Got a taste of the high life on the VIP side of the velvet rope (eek) as our host was buying bottles, which entitles you to escape the rammed half of the bar and score some seats at the outdoor tables.
Disappointing then that despite buying a magnum of champagne as we were such a big group, they seemed to try some cheeky upselling, telling our host that they'd run out of the first 2 Laurent Perrier bottles on the list and as such she'd have to go for the third most expensive magnum for £30 more. Lo and behold, after ordering a couple more they mysteriously found some LP after all. Hmm...
She also got some bar food in with a haul of edamame bowls (can't really go wrong) and some samba rolls. These were a mega tasty twist on sushi that I hadn't had before - each piece carefully assembled with like ten different ingredients (think crab, salmon, prawn, wagyu, scallop, avocado and more, all in one). Only catch is for £12-16 per platter they each only had 6-8 rolls; now magic in your mouth or not, £2 per sushi piece felt kinda ridiculous.
Given I wasn't paying(!) we had a fun eve from pinky sunset until the orange tree sculpture at the centre of the bar lit up in fairy lights and they turned on the gas fires to keep it cosy (it's breezier than you think 38 floors up!).
Service still a little slow but can't resist the 4th star for how much I love that view and the lift ride up! I'll still wait for a special treat to go back - but now I also know to go for the rolls over the sashimi, and not to open the samba-music-playing website at work...
Sushi Samba is one of the coolest places in the city. It's rare for me to go somewhere and admire the high caliber of good-looking people in one place at the same time. Seriously... really good looking people. I can't even count the number of men (& women) I was checking out as I walked through the bar. This place is so cool... it's up on the 38th floor of the Heron Tower and you have a wonderful view of the city, smack dab right next to The Gherkin. It's trendy, the people are well-dressed, and the drinks are really good.
I went into Sushi Samba a few nights ago for dinner and I got a nice window seat (even though it was a kinda cloudy day... surprise surprise). The drinks Pablo something and Shiso Fine were fantastic. The Yellowtail taquitos were like little mini raw fish tacos. The Samba London and Sao Paulo rolls were pretty good. The Salmon Ceviche was alright. Don't get me wrong... if you're expecting authentic sushi, you've come to the wrong place. The fusion of Japanese with South American flair is what Sushi Samba is all about. The menu is creative and although it's not the most amazing fusion ever, they still deliver tasty combinations.
Come here for the view and the experience. The atmosphere of the restaurants at The Heron Tower is some of the best in the city.
Nice decor and nice to hangout, but not great for sushi.
Was recommended by Yelpers Connie M. and Yee Gan O. and it was all hit - no miss!
First of all, you're in awe by the huge building that is the Herron Tower. A sexy glass elevator takes you 38 flights above to SushiSamba which is a restauraunt that served food influenced by the Japanese, Peruvian and Brazillian cultures. The three influences are reflected in everything from food, to cocktails and even the music.
The food is absolutely and beautifully well done! Everything is meant to be shared, but you'll find yourself reluctant to let your dinner mates share anything as the food is absolutely divine! Try it all and don't be shy - it's worth it!
The swanky decor just makes you feel so pretty. (It really does.) Go here to enjoy delicious cocktails upstairs, on the balcony or for dinner in the main room. Easily my new favourite in London!
*samba dances away*
I was trying to book online when I read that I need to book two months in advance to go eat at Sushi Samba!!! Any way I wanted a late lunch and was able to book a table for 3 pm on the same day!
Walking out of the lift, the same cold smile that you get at similar restaurants in London
We were offer to choose where we wanted to be seated and we chose the indoor space which was pretty empty. The waiters were attentive and friendly, tried to sway us from ordering too many plates but my sister and I were keen to try as many variations as possible
The food was good- pricy
The outdoor terrace is amazing - will go back again to spend time on the terrace
A different experience, enjoyed it very much.
Honestly sushi in london has been average at best. This place is extremely overpriced for what you get. It was about 90GBP for two people and we weren't even full. It is one of those overhyped and overpriced places that happen to be all the rage for no good reason.
i have to admit the cocktails looked pretty good but we had wine. i would be willing to come try the cocktails only. the food is totally nothing to write home about.
This sushi samba is amazing! The one in South Beach, Miami, FL has a great location too but the London sushi samba is something else! The service is ten times better, the view breathtaking! The decor of the place is amazing! Everything flows super smoothly there. Great experience every time I go to London! BUT I had to knock one star off because your wasabi (just like the one in Miami) sucks. Simple like that. How can you mess up the wasabi? Feels like u add too much salt to it? Idk :/
SushiSamba is located at the top of the Heron Tower, which by the way is so high up, I see God.
In my opinion, the only part I loved most about SushiSamba was the lift up to the bar. It goes so fast and you get to see the whole view of the City. It gives you a great buzz and gave me great excitement to see the bar.
However, I have to say I was disappointed. Poor interior, poor service, painful prices.
I didn't try the sushi unfortunately, only a glass of Rosé. The terrace however, was very cute. It had a completely different atmosphere and the thought that you're standing outside on a very high building is a great feeling.
I'm sure if I tried the cocktails or the food, I'd have a more positive opinion but I have no plans of returning.
From the whole SushiSamba experience which my friends always raved about, I have to say the lift up to the bar was the only exciting part. And the lift down.
We came at around 8:30 on a Friday night for drinks, and luckily the queue to get in was only about 10 minutes. The view speaks for itself; London has surprisingly few options for sky bars, and this is a gem in the middle of the City. This venue is so different than the Sushi Samba I went to in New York; the chain has done well in picking a unique location and making it a trendy bar as well. The place is decorated as if it's straight out of the Great Gatsby, over the top with chandeliers and bright colours. We tried to order food but that's impossible unless you have a table; there's no option of ordering at the bar or anything like that. I ordered the Nina Fresa and we walked around to enjoy the views before leaving to get food somewhere else.
Had a drink and a snack here. The views are amazing, well worth a look.
Cocktails are pretty good, but expensive. Good service. However £22 for six small pieces of eel is just too much.
Go and have a look at the view
I love this place - so much that I've actually gone back multiple times. This is unusual for me given how many new places seem to open up each week and my desire to try out (and review!) each and every one of them. Yet there is something about SushiSamba that keeps calling me back. It's not the deliciously spiced Tonka Bean Old Fashioned that is served on fire, the perfectly balanced fusion of Japanese, Peruvian, and Brazilian food, or the overall classy yet welcoming atmosphere. The biggest draw is the view - one of the few places in London you can enjoy the entire city spread out below you without having to pay a small fortune.
The two storey bar is what first drew me to SushiSamba, or rather the three bars within that area. The top bar (39th floor) is pretty but has limited seating/standing space. However, it remains the best one if you want a cocktail. Beers and simple mixed drinks can be found at the bar on the 38th floor and champagne and wine seems to be the purview of the outside bar on the 38th. Since the Old Fashioned is my go to drink, I suggest ordering at the top bar, slowly walking down the staircase to enjoy the view out west, and then settling down near the fire outside to enjoy your drink.
Food-wise, there is a full mix of foods but all cleverly intertwined. The Samba London roll is chaos in rice and seaweed and contains no less than crab, tuna, salmon, yellowtail, prawn, scallop, wagyu, avocado, tempura crunch, wasabi mayo, aji panca, with a housemade soy reduction. Needless to say that's a helluva lot of stuff to cram into one roll but it's bloody fantastic. To be clear, it's actually 4 types of roll so it's not overwhelming and is a great pick to sample several different combinations for £15. The rest of the food we ordered (it all started to blur together - too many pre-lunch cocktails) but the absolute standout were the yellow tail taquitos. This dish was the epitome of Japanese/Peruvian fusion, and we almost didn't order it.
We were absolutely stuffed from the day long eating marathon (SushiSamba was stop 3 and we had dinner planned shortly after), and the taquitos failed to appeal from the description. Our waiter insisted that we try them and refused to bring us the bill until we had. So we conceded and damn if that wasn't the best life decision of the day. Tender minced yellow tail mixed with creamy avocado and lightly flavoured with lemon grass, aji panca (Peruvian red pepper), and lime piped into a crispy taquito shell. Great mix of crunchy and silky textures and flavours with the acid from the lime enhancing the sweetness of the yellow tail while keeping the rich avocado at bay. If you get nothing else but this, it will be a happy meal.
Overall, a great place to go for a bite and even better for a drink. Keep in mind that they tend to start a dress code in the evenings so make sure you are dressed a bit nice (think more West End than Shoreditch) and definitely book if you fancy a meal. It's a bit pricey, but when you consider that you aren't paying £25 to get above the city, it's really not that bad.
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