OXBO is a bustling, sophisticated dining room occupying the ground floor of the Hilton Bankside. The focus is modern British food with an occasional twist, while oozing that relaxed Sunday vibe we all hanker for.
The vast dining room is notably on trend with exposed brick, white tiles, suspended lighting and industrial style partitions with the open plan kitchen providing a focal point for diners. A chap strumming on the guitar under the mounted animal heads art pieces adds to the laid back, anything goes feel.
The Sunday we visited the restaurant was packed with couples and families with young children, all meeting up for a chilled afternoon.
The interesting concept allows guests to choose from starters and desserts served buffet-style, while guests have three items to choose from for the main course. I decided not to do that terribly English thing of piling my plate high with clashing cuisines, and so opted for the sashimi. The array of fish bowled me over - salmon, swordfish, sea bass and varying cuts of tuna; I devoured three plates worth of the delicate fresh slivers doused in plenty of soy sauce and spiked with wasabi. My partner took one for the team and covered the rest – prawns dipped in mayo, smoked duck breast and salami, a variety of cheeses, salad and cutesy individual crab and mango cups.
Now I would have presumed the roast sat at the helm of the main courses and who wouldn’t order blushingly pink sirloin of beef, but the Josper grilled chicken was just as gorgeous - smoky and charred with that salty crisp skin you imagine could only be achieved from a barbecue. I presume the cod cooked in that same beastly, indoor charcoal oven is equally as delicious. For vegetarians, a cauliflower and broccoli dahl provides a refreshing alternative to the otherwise quintessential Sunday roast. But for me, having had several sneak previews of the beef and marvelling at its on-point cooking, it didn’t disappoint. I find Yorkshire puddings as big as your face are always a welcome presence and the gravy was so tasty I could have drunk it from the jug!
Dessert is served in the same fashion as the starters and when you’re as full as an egg that suits perfectly. A Polly Pocket-sized strawberry crème brulee and a salted caramel chocolate cup were among my favourites. The Rocky Road was a coup.
It’s not called a Bottomless Roast for nothing and to my delight, this extends to the libations. With three courses for £28 and only £40 for the addition of bottomless Cava, it’s well worth pushing the boat out. Where some bottomless servings feel slow and reluctant, this was attentive and generous.
Casual, classy and confident.
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There's nothing more delicious in life than indulging in a sensational meal.