This week GŌNG Bar, perched atop the 52nd floor of the Shangri-La Hotel in The Shard, launched its new menu, entitled Director’s Cut. The menu is inspired famous film directors and attempts to illustrate parallels in storytelling, capturing that essence in a cocktail.
As expected, the list of 16 new cocktails vary in their level of theatrics to capture the senses. The Steven Spielberg-inspired drink, ‘Fear of the Jungle’ is made with pisco, banana, pineapple skin sherbert, lime and chocolate mole, garnished with a scorpion. An actual scorpion. Light and refreshing, I could taste pisco, pineapple, lime and not much else, but it was tasty and the scorpion made a great photo.
The 16 new cocktails and 4 mocktails are separated into 5 themes in the menu, depending on your flavour preference. I had a great time sampling a variety of cocktails, all the while admiring the beautiful London landscape and chatting away to a Woody Allen impersonator. Some drinks are absolutely stunning – like the ‘Tea with Daisy’, which is inspired by Baz Luhrmann and combines vodka, blueberry and jasmine shrub, port and olive tea soda. Light, bitter, floral, it was perfectly balanced. However, some were a bit harsher.
The George Lucas drink ‘Feel The Force’ probably was the most photographed drink of the night – but I didn’t actually see anyone finish it. It has vodka, coconut, pastis and clarified lime – but all I can taste is the anise of pastis. It just completely overpowers the drink. But you know, sipping a levitating cocktail at 52 floors above London? I think that’s fair.
All in all, it’s a really fun and playful menu which will impress. The £18 price tag for a cocktail is probably more for the where you’re drinking, rather than the drink itself, but that’s hardly a problem.
GŌNG Bar, www.shangri-la.com/london