The Oxo Tower Brasserie, South Bank, London

Spannered cuisine commentator Ron Beverage takes two unsuspecting ladies up the Oxo Tower.

By Ron Beverage

Eating up a tower can be a daunting experience. For one thing, the higher the altitude, the higher the chance of the sous chef getting vertigo and shitting in your crème brulee. So it was with some trepidation that I marched my colleagues to the top of the Oxo tower for dinner.

When you hit the eighth floor, you either turn left into the Harvey Nicholls-owned Restaurant, where the prices are so extortionate you may as well throw yourself off the tower and let your family claim the insurance, or turn right into the tradesman’s entrance and find the more reasonable and less salubrious Brasserie.

You’ll doubtless get there by way of the bar, which is little more than a leaning post for bloated Morgan Stanley execs, dribbling into the cleavage of their top-heavy blonde bomb-craters. But there’s no doubting the view — wherever you are standing, the vista is stunning; and gazing out over the rooftops of St. Paul’s, you’ll soon forget that you’re surrounded by a baying throng of hateful, coked-up ignoramuses who earn twelve times as much as you.

The tables are surprisingly comfortable for a restaurant that’s packed in so close together. But the comfort was soon broken by our waiter, who had the kind of leer that sex tourists reserve for the moment they get behind closed doors, as he endorsed my choice of starter. The fact that the menu has a heavy Oriental lilt, hinting at British Chinese fusion, seemed lost on him.

Their crispy fried quail had less meat on it than a Biafran crackwhore, but such is the way with quail. It was heartening that the ambience was so relaxed that I felt comfortable rolling up the sleeves, picking up the bird and gnawing its sinewy meat off with my bare teeth. All was saved by the main course. Biting into their twice-cooked pork was akin to having a religious epiphany during a chance encounter in a public toilet when a beautiful gay man thumbs a warm silk handkerchief up your rectum which transmogrifies into a flock of white doves with gossamer feathers which then fly off to lay their eggs on Easter Island. The oriental noodles were almost as tough as a camel’s lower intestine but not nearly as pungent; oriental mushrooms secreted in the pasta felt like regurgitated scrotums soaked in lighter fluid.

For an eminently reasonable £150 you could feed a family of eight for three months in Mogadishu. At the Oxo Tower, it allows three slightly overweight middle-class professionals to eat so much that they wake up at 3am feeling like they’ve been battered in the stomach with a baseball bat.

The Oxo Tower Brasserie, South Bank
Reservations 020 7803 3888
try_sexual posted 29 October 2008 (20:52:37)
Imagine my suprise when my girlfriend proclaimed that she was going to take me up the oxo tower for my birthday. To be honest i was relly scared at the thought of being taken up the oxo tower,A friend of mine from work told me his girlfriend had taken him up the oxo tower and he hadnt been able to sit down for a week! To be honest the whole oxo tower experience was a bit of a let down.I dont think ill let my girlfriend ever take me up the oxo tower again.
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