Aviary’s Rooftop Igloos: Private Dining With A Twist

By Ellie Smith

7 months ago

We tried the Nordic-inspired igloos at Aviary London


London is jam-packed with skyscrapers, meaning you’re never too far from a rooftop restaurant – particularly in the Square Mile. But only a few offer the winning combination of stellar views and great food (often the promised vistas are actually a bit of a let-down, or the menu is merely an afterthought). One that ticks both boxes, though, is Aviary London, a buzzy restaurant and bar found on the 10th floor of Montcalm Royal London House Hotel in Finsbury Square. It’s a popular spot year-round, but particularly fun during the winter, when a handful of dining igloos pop up on the terrace, ideal for festive group dining or private events. C&TH’s Ellie Smith headed ten floors up for a cosy dinner in the sky.

Review: Aviary London, Finsbury Square

The trend for igloo dining has only become a thing in the past few years – inspired by the original, Coppa Club. Nowadays, more and more restaurants are joining in the fun, installing temporary domes onto their terraces so people can enjoy al fresco private dinners in the cooler months.

Igloo at Aviary London

Aviary London has been doing so for a couple of years now, and its offering is now tip-top, with the 2023 igloos created in partnership with Grey Goose. I visited on a rainy, chilly evening, so was a little apprehensive about the prospect of outdoor dining, even if it was covered – but I needn’t have worried. The igloos are totally protected from the elements, decked out with heaters and snug blankets to ensure you’re kept nice and cosy. 

Aviary London

Perched on the roof terrace, these Nordic-inspired glass domes offer views across the city – particularly if you nab one at the front. They fit up to eight guests, and are best for group events, though can work well as a romantic date night spot too (provided you actually like each other, as it’s really just the two of you).

Food-wise, diners can enjoy a menu of British dishes: begin with starters of burrata, duck terrine or beef tartare, ahead of mains such as slow-cooked lamb, roast celeriac with wild mushrooms, and Atlantic cod with crushed potatoes. Follow with a cheeseboard or a seasonal dessert – the current menu includes a milk chocolate mousse with confit pear, or apple and damson crumble. Alternatively, go for more of a grazing platter with the smorgasbord, a spread of smoked meats, pickled veggies, cheese, pate and dips.

Grazing board at Aviary London

Enjoy alongside Grey Goose cocktails: the Cool and Warm is a hot, festive tipple flavoured with cinnamon and maple syrup, while the Northern Sky is a dessert drink, made with chocolate liqueur and Cointreau. Not a vodka fan? Fear not: there’s also an extensive menu of wine and champagne on offer.

Being separated from the main restaurant, there’s a risk of being forgotten about by the staff, but the Aviary team are attentive without being overbearing. More generally, the venue has a lively vibe and attracts a young crowd, so it’s best suited to diners after a more upbeat dinner and drinks scenario rather than a quiet meal out. When we visited on a Saturday evening, the majority of igloos were housing groups of friends after a good time, and there was a fair amount of singing and dancing going on (no judgement here). But if you’re up for a bit of a party, it’s the perfect spot for a festive night out with friends.

BOOK IT

Royal London House, 10th Floor Montcalm, 22-25 Finsbury Square, London EC2A 1DX, aviarylondon.com