Friday, December 15, 2006

Right place,right time!

I just happened to visiting my lovely but bullish (they told me to say that!) clients to drop off a few goodies for their Christmas raffle. I’d managed to prise some items from the marketing cupboard but thought I needed to add a certain little diva-esque ‘je ne sais quois’. So I hot-footed it to Waitrose to grab something with a little more festive cheer and when my eye fell upon a nice bottle of Veuve Clicquot Rosé along with some Gordon Ramsay fine chocolates, I thought this might do the trick.

After their raffle (the pink champagne certainly hit the mark!) and their secret Santa they were off for their team meal at Oxo Tower Brasserie. And lucky old me happened to be available to fill a vacant spot and I’m so delighted I was as it was such a lovely evening. I haven’t been to the Harvey Nichols owned stunning viewed Oxo Tower for many years and I think it’s gone from strength to strength. The bar is clearly the place to be and even though it was like being on a very glamorous tube (just the number of people not the ‘minding of gaps’ and all that malarkey) and they serve very fine Raspberry Royale Fizzes – which is like Kir Royale but with an Oxo twist. We had a large crowd; I think nearly 30 but I lost count when ordering the drinks.

We had a short set menu to select from but they seemed more than happy to accommodate any allergies and dietary requirements. Though I thought my aversion to tomatoes and goats’ cheese might just seem awkward so I ordered the only main that didn’t contain either which was Guinea fowl, spiced red cabbage, cotechino sausage, bread sauce, hazelnuts after a very fine Seared smoked salmon, spring onion pancake, keta, horseradish crème fraîche. And the starter was seriously good, the horseradish crème fraîche had such a kick and it was a great idea to serve the smoked salmon in a warm thick slice – mmmm, mmmm. And now I know that keta means salmon roe. W also ordered a refreshing green salad with Parmesan and some tasty potatoes and green beans for the table to ensure we ate a little healthily also. And she was absolutely right; the green salad was a perfect idea! My guinea fowl and all the accompaniments was a very generous portion and I struggled to eat it all. The red cabbage was also a revelation as this always transports me back to my Girl Guide camping days and those horrendous enormous jars of pickled red cabbage that seemed to accompany every meal, apart from breakfast – ughh! But the Oxo red cabbage was very tasty, as was everything actually I couldn’t fault any of the food we had at all.

I wrapped this up with a Bitter chocolate mousse and griottines cherries. Very good indeed!

And I was seriously impressed that Oxo Brasserie didn’t stoop to that standard treatment of large parties, especially at Christmas and consider that were only ‘here for the beer’ and therefore we’d be happy to eat any old pap that they delivered. There are many places out there that produce shameful excuses for food at this time of year. Well done to the Oxo Brasserie for not going down that route and doing us proud, fabulous food and great service. And an amazing view also!

Thank you for my lovely clients for letting me join them on their night and they can’t even read this blog so they don’t know what I’ve said about them!

I know the bar is one of ‘the places to be’ but I found it a little heaving for my tastes, perhaps if we’d secure some of the seats it would have been better but I know that most would prefer the lively party atmosphere rather than the elegant, chilled sort of place I’d plump for. It sure is a hot hangout, and seemed very popular for a glamorous date venue!

Two forks for Oxo Brasserie and I look forward to visiting them again, though maybe when not quite so busy!

1 comment:

DD said...


Veuve Clicquot Rosé is everywhere in Oz, dressed in lovely little pastel pink ice jackets! I LOVE IT!

Pink is clearly in!