OXO Tower Restaurant, Bar and Brasserie | South Bank Restaurant
Last Updated: 24th October 2018
The Oxo Tower has been standing since the early 1900s.
Apparently, people put a lot of stock in it.
The exact date of its construction is actually not known, but what is known is that the company was refused permission to use the space as advertising. That’s when they installed the vertically-aligned windows, each of which “coincidentally” happened to be in the shapes of a circle, a cross and a circle.
And much to everyone’s surprise, people loved it.
That’s still true today – because besides the craft and design-focussed shops on the ground floor where you can pick up one-of-a-kind, handmade trinkets, and the two galleries (Bargehouse and gallery@oxo) housing a rotating series of events and exhibitions for cutting-edge artists, it’s also home to the OXO Tower Restaurant, Bar and Brasserie, which has occupied the eighth floor of the building for over two decades now. Sat right beneath the tower itself, and featuring floor-to-ceiling windows and a 250-foot terrace that spans across the three venues, it’s home to one of the best views on the South Bank – making it by default one of the best places in the area to grab a bite and/or a cocktail.
Here’s what you can expect:
Seeing as this is a restaurant that’s seen over 20 years of service, you can forgive the slight noughties feel of the place, with glitzy gold tiling behind the bar, blue leather seating, crisp white tablecloths and an unusual ceiling that gives you some perspective on what it’s like to be a fly caught in a Venetian blind. Because it’s not the interiors you’re here for, it’s the views; for which you’ll be fighting tooth and nail for a table next to the slanted floor-to-ceiling windows, or best of all, out on the terrace. In typically British fashion, that terrace stays open all year round, with blankets for resilient al fresco diners in Winter, and fairy-lit trees.
There’s plenty by way of atmosphere inside, too, though – thanks in large part to the live jazz you’ll find in the (more relaxed) Brasserie every evening. It’s the perfect accompaniment to-
Classically British and seasonal, the menu here changes frequently, but currently boasts starters like roast partridge tart with buttered cabbage and parsnip purée; and seared venison with sea buckthorn gel. Upsizing, you’ll see Mediterranean influences in the likes of loin of lamb stuffed with truffle gnocchi and pickled girolles; sea bass and squid ink linguine with Champagne sauce; or even a Châteaubriand to share.
Dessert, meanwhile, will net you prune soufflés, pumpkin cakes, and fig and hazelnut pudding, each accompanied by some of their custom-made ice creams with inventive flavours like nutmeg, fig leaf and whisky.
Speaking of which…
That glitzy bar is home to a neat little list of classics like the Pornstar Martini, Sazerac and Mojito, as well as house signatures like the Vanilla Chocolate Malt (vanilla vodka, almond milk, chocolate liqueur, vanilla sugar and malted milk). On top of that, there’s a modest wine list of over 800 bottles, as well as beers, ciders and mocktails to choose from. And the good news is…
…they’re all gravy.
NOTE: The Oxo Tower Restaurant is open daily from noon-late, the Bar from 11am-late, and the Brasserie 12pm-11pm (10pm Sundays). You can book a table and find out more on their website HERE.
OXO Tower Restaurant, Bar and Brasserie | Oxo Tower Wharf, Barge House Street, South Bank, SE1 9PH
Like bars with a view? Check out your ultimate London rooftop bar guide