There aren’t many better ways to enjoy a sunny evening in London than taking in views of the city from on high, cocktail in hand.

Luckily there is no shortage of rooftop bars across the capital, so we’re spoilt for choice in that department.

One venue that describes itself as ‘London’s best-kept secret skyline bar’ is Savage Garden, so I went along with some friends to try it out.

Why is it a secret? That could be because, nestled at the top of the Doubletree by Hilton Tower of London hotel, it is rather unassuming from the outside, with the only obvious signage at the back entrance to the hotel.  

The first thing to say about Savage Garden is you would be hard-pressed to find a better location for skyline views.

The hotel is smack bang in the middle of Fenchurch Street and Tower Hill stations, meaning once you take the lift to the 12th floor and step out onto the terrace you are greeted with stunning sights of the Shard and Trinity House to one side, and the Gerkin to the other.

Harrow Times: Views of rooftops and Trinity House Views of rooftops and Trinity House (Image: Simon Murfitt, Newsquest)

The seating outdoors is a mixture of large and small tables, which are first-come first-served, while many groups of friends or colleagues are happy to stand with their drinks.

For the winter, or if the London weather isn’t playing ball, you can reserve tables in the stylish main bar, many of which are next to floor to ceiling windows so you can still take in the impressive views.

The clientele seemed to be mostly either post-work drinkers or hotel guests having a drink before going out for the evening.

Certainly no-one else ordered the mountain of food that we did but, you know, it was all in the name of public service journalism.

Harrow Times: The indoor bar at Savage GardenThe indoor bar at Savage Garden (Image: Savage Garden)

Our first duty, however, was to sample the extensive menu of signature cocktails, the names of which are all inspired by Savage Garden’s location near Tower Bridge.

We sampled ‘The Conqueror’ and ‘Raging Tudor’. Both of which are made with an intricate list of ingredients that included shiitake mushroom tincture, absinthe spray and pineapple foam.

They also don’t hold back on the alcohol, so I would suggest one is probably enough if you’re planning to go on a weeknight.

If spirits are your thing, however, this is the place for you as the menu provides a near endless amount of choice, including 84 whiskeys of different brands and vintages.

The food menu is a much simpler prospect with various sharing plates to choose from rather than large individual meals, which seemed appropriate for the social nature of the bar.

Harrow Times: Our banquet - all in the name of journalismOur banquet - all in the name of journalism (Image: Robin Murray)

We tucked into an array of succulent sliders, croquettes, pancetta mac & cheese bon bons and pulled duck bao buns. All of which were exactly the kind of hearty fare you want after a cocktail and a few beers in the sun.

My standout recommendation is the nettle and wild garlic arancini. These were light and dangerously moreish – a far cry from the bland, stodgy imitations you will find on many a gastropub menu.

They came with a spiced sambal mayo, which had a subtle kick to complement the flavours perfectly.


In total our bill – including a much-deserved tip for the cheerful, attentive waiting staff – would have come to around £300 for the three of us.

But I should emphasise that we really went all out on the food, to the point where the short walk to the station on the way home was a rather drawn-out affair.

I would happily go back to Savage Garden, but maybe take it a bit easier on the sharing plates next time.