Steve and I only spent two and a half days in London, but I could spend two and a half days talking about our short trip. However, I prefer to focus on one of my favorite and less known (compared to the London Eye, the Tower of London, Big Ben, etc.) attractions.
Having conquered the Soho, Piccadilly Circus, and Covent Garden areas during our St. Patrick’s Day pub crawl the previous night, we decided to take the Tube to Shoreditch for the much talked about nightlife in that part of the city. It was a Wednesday and there wasn’t much “nightlife” to speak of. After walking for twenty minutes, we discovered one or two fairly empty bars. After having a beer and asking the bartender where the “hot spots” were and getting the response, “Honestly, there’s not much going on because it’s a Wednesday,” we headed back toward the station we had come from. We met a lovely man along the way and asked where we could get some late night food (it was already 10:00pm and we hadn’t eaten dinner yet), he recommended a spot near Liverpool Station called “Duck & Waffle”. He didn’t really elaborate about the place except that it was “right ahead”. It turns out that “Duck & Waffle” is the highest restaurant in the UK, located on the 40th floor. We arrived and ordered some drinks while we waited for a table near the window to open up. Twenty minutes later (which seemed like a long time to a hungry girl) we were called over and shown our table. The wait was worth it.
Once seated, our waiter came over and he was the cutest little Italian. He was originally from Lecce, where we had been the previous weekend, so it was good to talk about his city with him! We ordered more drinks and scanned the list of offered food. They had a special late night menu that included such items as, “bbq spiced crispy pig ears”, “duck egg en cocette”, and “wild Cornish pollock meatballs”. We ordered “oxcheek grilled cheese” with smoked, shredded oxcheek meat, onion jam, sriracha, and a fried egg. We also ordered the restaurant’s special, what else, “duck & waffle”, with crispy leg confit, fried duck egg, and mustard maple syrup. My stomach was grumbling and my mouth was watering as I watched other patrons daintily drizzling the mustard maple syrup on their own suppers. It is a wonder that when our food arrived I even took the time to snap a picture of it before devouring it.
Even though I was ravenous, I forced myself to eat slowly and savor all of the flavors. I was a little nervous for the oxcheek, but it was shredded so thin and flavored so well I soon forgot my fears of eating “cheek meat” and enjoyed the meal. The mustard maple syrup was so genius I had to keep myself from licking the plate when I had finished. We could have spent £20 each to sit for thirty minutes in the London Eye to enjoy the same view while not eating, and more importantly, not enjoying a few drinks. Once again, Steve’s inability to settle for a restaurant earlier during the day paid off and we had a memorable last evening in London.