The birds on my visit to ETM Group’s recently opened rooftop restaurant and terrace overlooking Moorgate are decorative rather than cooked. Peacock-guarded, Aviary is a salon of tranquility on top of the Montcalm Royal London House Hotel in Finsbury Square.
Come the spring, its unrestricted, refreshing views over Broadgate to the towers beyond will no doubt prove a tantalising draw for the well-heeled and suavely suited.
Right now though, on a Sunday lunchtime in January, its cosy, golden interior is birdcage-lite; a comforting prison for Londoners to perch in and devour the flesh of well-cooked beasts while preening in the antiqued mirrors that divide up the floor-to-ceiling glazing.
My companion eschews the poultry for “retired dairy cow” roast beef (£21) with Yorkshires and the like.
The sorry image of this exhausted lady dragging herself for a last hurrah in the slaughterhouse would be too unbearable if the result were tough, but she’s butter-soft delicious; a fitting end.
Unbelievably, my red deer on Bolognese and turip puree (£21) is better yet. Simply outstanding.
Quite why the combination of mince, juicy slices of beast and white goo works so well is anybody's guess. But in no time my plate is clean.
I could have happily ushered the whole herd into my mouth.
Things slow down for luxurious rich chocolate mousse with salted caramel (£6) and a demure pot of white tea, but the gap is a welcome opportunity to survey the views.
There's really no need to wait for the warmer months. Aviary's lofty position is perfectly acceptable from inside and even gifts gentlemen diners the opportunity to urinate while looking down on the smaller city offices below from its distant toilets.
Sharpen the service, the starters (quinoa and Stitchelton in some sort of weak broth is an unfortunate bowl of guano) and get a soft drinks menu printed.
Then we’ll really be tweeting.
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