Dining Out in London
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SPOTLIGHT: June, 2007

Oxo Tower's Soutzouki Sausage with St. Paul's Cathedral
with Burlington Bertie & Shophound Alexia

Book a restaurant table with a panoramic view over the Thames and London skyline dominated by the dome of St. Paul's Cathedral and you must expect to pay handsomely for the pleasure. Such views with the viandes don't come cheap. So we expect the restaurant menu, cuisine and wine list to complement the scenery. At the rooftop Oxo Restaurant up on the eighth floor of the refurbished Oxo Tower Wharf, (onetime power station and meat packing warehouse), scenery and food complement each other to perfection.

Oxo Tower Wharf, South Bank, SE1 9PH. Tel: 020 7803 3888 Online booking
Opening Times: Lunch Menu. Mon-Sat, 12 noon-2.30pm; Sun, 12 bnoon-3pm.
Dinner Menu. Mon-Sat, 6pm-11pm; Sun, 6.30pm-10pm.
Average Prices: Lunch. 3 course a la carte menu: 31.50 fixed price.
Evening a la carte. 3 courses from about 60.
Wine by the glass: from 4.50. By the bottle: from 15.
Vegetarian/Vegan menu and wine list.
Wheelchair accessible
London Transport: Nearest Tube. Blackfriars, Southwark, Waterloo, Embankment.

The restaurant is run with the panache one has grown to expect of proprietors Harvey Nichols, who also run the popular Prism Restaurant in the City and Fifth Floor, Alexia's favourite lunchtime haunt at Harvey Nichols itself. Oxo certainly lived up to all our expectations when we lunched there recently having first spent an enjoyable morning browsing in the many retail design studios selling fashion, jewellery and furniture on the first and second floors.,

The prix fix lunch menu, (which changes seasonally), offered an excellent choice of starters, fish and meat courses. Alexia began with Marinated scallops and Bertie sampled the soutzouki, a Cretan sausage spiced with orange and oregano, as starters. For her main course Alexia chose Seared calves liver served with spinach, raisins, pine nuts and Marsala glazed onions. Bertie opted for Spiced pollock served with a smoked bacon and lentil salza and roast pepper sauce.

Having admired the remarkable list of some 800 wines, Bertie passed on the 1945 Bordeaux bottle of Chateau Cheval Blanc priced at 1350, and settled for a more modest but refreshingly cool 22 bottle of Italian Soave to accompany the meal.

From the imaginative dessert selection, Alexia chose a yoghurt Blueberry mousse with lemon and poppy seed cake, while Bertie indulged his chocoholic cravings with a Chocolate slice, Baileys and Espresso sorbet.

The menu is exciting; the food was beautifully cooked and elegantly served by charming and attentive waiters. And, of course, the view from our terrace table outside on such a sunny summer's day, was fantastic. The view from inside is in fact quite as spectacular, thanks to the floor-to-ceiling restaurant windows which line the long terrace. Booking is probably essential if you wish to ensure a terrace or window table.

A lively Brasserie with similar views offers an equally interesting but cheaper 2-course lunch menu for 17.50, or 3-courses for 21.50, Monday to Friday; and for pre-theatre dining between 5.30pm and 7pm Monday - Saturday. This is an excellent option for theatregoers taking in a performance at Shakespeare's Globe Theatre just a short riverside walk away.

Filed 12 June, 2007.

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