Restaurant Review: Aviary


The Wordrobe’s founder Sophie Ritchie indulges with a sky-high Sunday brunch at Aviary, Finsbury Square


Always a fan of chic dining decor, Aviary, the restaurant located on the 10th floor of the Montcalm Hotel captures my attention from the moment I walk in. Think plenty of modern moments – it’s trendy yet retains a clear elegance at the same time.


The venue


Walls are lined with mirrors and large glass circular ceiling lights that wouldn’t look out of place in an archaic railway station hang from the ceiling. I love the opulent pops of colour throughout – bright orange, jade green and silky purples fleck the room.

Despite the mildly hedonistic decor, this is a laid-back weekend spot with great service. Staff are attentive from the moment I sit down, but friendly and informative too. I’m given a newspaper to peruse with a coffee whilst I wait for my friend to arrive – ideal for settling into the slower paced Sunday brunch mood.

Once my dining companion arrives (the unfortunate downside to weekends: public transport) we waste no time in eyeing up the menu offering. Firmly committed to backing all things British, Aviary prides itself on sourcing from small British livestock farmers using only the best of the UK’s heritage breeds.

Where possible, fish is responsibly sourced from south coast day boats and British fishing ports – which is refreshing to see (and taste).


The food



The brunch menu itself is vast – there’s an entire section dedicated to egg dishes, plus ‘skillets & crumpets,’ dishes from the coal oven, traditional mains and more. The list of feasts goes on and on.

Food here is indulgently fun, with quirky names such as ‘Whatever eggs on toast’ and even a fried Nutella and marshmallow sandwich.

It’s ideal for those wishing to fill their stomachs with a great view at the same time, and we fall into this bracket. I begin with sashimi – yellow fin tuna tartare (£12) arranged delicately – followed by the traditional choice of scrambled eggs on toast with oak smoked salmon (£14.50).

The dish itself is arranged in yin and yang format – one half of the plate smoked salmon, the other, a pile of buttery eggs – golden yellow and meltingly good. It doesn’t last long.

Firmly settled in to our suave surroundings, we follow our food with a round of Buck’s Fizz house cocktail (£11) and a giant Jennings Steam Boat (Think Santa Teresa Claro rum, pineapple, honey and lime) served in a sharing pineapple cup (£35), both enjoyed by the terrace.

With the latter’s rose gold lavish cup, we’re immediately the envy of our fellow visitors – and we’re asked twice what we’re drinking by guests experiencing a dose of serious pineapple envy.

The cocktails are undeniably glorious – but it’s Aviary’s terrace view that steals the show. Teeming with guests who’ve flocked to gaze at the skyline with Champagne or cocktail in hand, it’s not hard to see why with London laid out before us. There’s one word for views like this – stunning.

Admiring the cityscape takes much longer than anticipated, and we find ourselves extending our stay by another two hours – with staff even bringing us suncream while we lounge in the Sunday sun.


The verdict


Deliciously indulgent food, opulent interiors and a view worth getting sunburnt for. Aviary, we’ll be flocking back soon.

Make it happen
Where: Montcalm Royal London House, 22-25 Finsbury Square, London EC2A 1DX
Bookings: Phone 020 3873 4060 or click here to make a reservation

Words by Sophie Ritchie, founder of The Wordrobe

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