First impressions. The Symphony Vessel is astonishingly spacious and furnished with elegant but neutral décor. The on-water restaurant was dimly lit for the ambiance with background music performed by a live band. On boarding, as part of the Premier Dinner Cruise package we were welcomed with a complimentary glass of sparkling Rosé. Ed, the charming (and good-looking) waiter who serviced our table, made sure we were relaxed as we set sail on to the river Thames. As the sun set and the city lit up, our experience of the Symphony cruise commenced.
The dinner cruise package came with house wine to accompany the meal – an excellent choice between red and white South African wine. The four-course A la Carte menu consisted of a set entrée of a Beetroot and Ginger Shot served with a Goat’s Cheese Choux. With initial doubts about the Beetroot and Ginger Shot, it was surprisingly delightful. An excellent palette cleanser and perfectly matched with the goat’s cheese to begin the meal. As for the rest of the menu, from starter to dessert, there were a variety of options to choose from. We were instructed to order all our food in one setting with no option to change once the food was ordered. Ed explained that all the food is freshly prepared on board and to manage the preparations in the kitchen, all the food needed to be ordered at once. Not the best method for the indecisive. Ed gave us extra time to study the menu and gave suggestions on his personal favourite dishes as well as the most popular.
The starter and the main menu had a selection of various meat, fish and vegetarian choices. Considering we were dining on water, it was only right to go for the starter of Grilled Mackerel and the Paprika Hake for the main. Deciding on the dessert was challenging, with an intriguing and diverse selection, we settled for three different options to share to satisfy our curiosity. After ordering the food, we enjoyed the striking views of London over a glass of wine and the complimentary bread.
The food on the cruise was to good standard. The mackerel starter was fairly decent and well-plated. However, the Paprika Hake main was sensational. Seasoned and cooked to perfection; not too dry and not underdone – this was an excellent choice. The garlic spinach paired with the lobster sauce complimented the dish excellently creating an unforgettable dish.
Just before the dessert was served, a singer made her way on the dance floor and performed R&B classics with a Jazz feel. Basking in the moment, we sang along and enjoyed the performance. Shortly after, our trio of desserts arrived and consisted of: The White Chocolate and Candy Floss Parfait, Treacle Tart and the White Opera Gateau.
Although Ed had advised that the gateau was the best option, we begged to differ. The White Chocolate and Candy Floss Parfait is Fashion Forte’s favourite! From the plating, o the doughnut crisps – this dessert ticked all the boxes. As we returned to the pier, we concluded our meal with tea and biscuits.
The Bateaux London Dinner Cruise is honestly timeless experience and a special treat for a special occasion.
Find more information about Bateaux Cruises here: https://www.bateauxlondon.com/