As some of you might have already guessed following Cut The Cap’s adventures, we prefer our dining to be done in establishments that welcome cigar smokers with the promise of beautiful outdoor spaces that are warm and comfortable enough to enjoy our leisure time over the course of a few hours including a meal, some great drinks, and of course, a cigar. Luckily for us, we were invited to Northbank Restaurant & Bar by the capital’s Millennium Bridge for just such an evening.
Northbank Restaurant is one of the hidden gems of London. Tucked away beside the Millennium Bridge on Paul’s Walk, the restaurant faces out on to the River Thames and Tate Modern and is an ideal getaway from one of the busiest parts of the City, behind the towering office blocks that house some of the greatest financial businesses in the world. The location certainly is something to rave about and is definitely something to consider when picking a restaurant.
Upon walking in you’re greeted quite pleasently by the host and this in itself was very important. They say people make up their minds on new people, places, and experiences within the first 90 seconds, and a guest visiting a restaurant is no different. A good first impression by the folks at Northbank, who greeted us with a smile and welcoming earnest to assist.
We were seated outside on the terrace, where we usually to prefer to dine so that we may follow our meal with a cigar. The terrace was a good size considering the location. Outdoor space in the financial heart of London is a luxury few can boast. The tables are quite comfortably spaced and we never felt too close to the diners around us. There’s a light decor of shrubbery going around the terrace which takes away the feeling of being in the concrete jungle that you are actually in. It’s a small amount, but by the backdrop of the office blocks, is enough to give that suburban pub warmth.
The initial contact with the waiting staff was quick. After a quick flick through the drinks list, a waiter was by our side and ready to take our drinks order which was quick to arrive despite a scattering of tables which all needed attending to (and were, as expertly and quickly as we were). The order for food was handled just as efficiently and we were quite pleased. There’s few things worse than going out specifically for a meal and feeling like it’ll just never materialise.
The menu at Northbank is modern British, with Cornish inspirations having a clear say and perfected by head chef Jason Marchant. We sampled the roast pork with crackling. The crackling on top was beautifully cooked with skilful mastery as one would expect from the best restaurants. The crackling was thin and crispy, with tender, moist pork sitting beneath. The lightly salty flavour of the crackling sits well with the mild mannered, juicy pork. Served with a variety of sides, the meals are definitely the masterpieces here at Northbank. We followed up with a berry framboise that was fresh and light. We were particularly impressed with the balance of flavours. It wasn’t too sweet, and there was just a little kick of the zest of from the strawberry which meant it didn’t overpower our drinks for the evening and also meant we could follow it up with a cigar without the worry of mixing our palate.
Northbank Restaurant also stock a small range of Cigars. You’ll definitely find the usual favourites such as a Partagas Serie P No. 2 or a Montecristo No. 4 . However, don’t expect to find anything too niche as the restaurant is still relatively new to the cigar game. We hope that over time as Northbank builds its reputation amongst cigar smokers (which we’re pretty certain it will) that there’ll be a much larger selection to choose from. It’s down to all of us to help bring Northbank in to the wider cigar world and we’re sure you’ll all agree there’s nothing more satisfying then to help grow our options of cigar-friendly restaurants and bars.
All-round, we enjoyed our time at Northbank. A great setting, excellent service, delightful food, and a cigar-friendly venue in a part of the city where there are few better options, and only one other cigar bar within the vicinity.
You can visit Northbank Restaurant at One Paul’s Walk, London, EC4V 3QH but don’t forget to check out the picture gallery below and visit their website www.northbankrestaurant.com for further info.