Pink Dog

Café with a view #10: OXO Tower Bar

Just along from the Tate Modern’s café with a view is the Oxo Tower and its own café (or rather bar, brasserie and restaurant, but it has seats and sells tea and coffee, so in my traditional book that makes it a café). The view over the City is sufficiently glorious that it’s pretty good even on a dismal day:

View from the OXO Tower

On trying to enter the establishment there is (or at least, was for me and the Peruvian ambassador*) an obedience test. I was confronted with one of those standard signs asking people to wait to be seated rather than to rush in and grab their own seat. And scattered around the sign were four staff, all ignoring me, with another couple of their colleagues only slightly further away and also ignoring me. Do you wait patiently? Do you turn all un-English and start demanding their attention? Or do you ignore the sign?

Once past the test, watch out for the strange height of the stools at the bar, which leave you stretching for your drinks as if they are on the top shelf, not quite sensibly in reach. Do also head to the toilets to see their funky doors and interior lighting. (Regular readers of my Pizza Express posts will be disappointed to know that I have no comment on the toilet signage. It is all rather normal here.)

And on the way out, make sure you take a look out the windows on the other side, looking out over South London. You get a great view of the changing nature of this part of the city, with the mix of new build, old tower blocks and even older lower rise buildings, commercial and residential all closely intermingled in a jangle of different architectural styles.

You can see all my cafés with view in London here.


* If you are the Peruvian ambassador and wondering why you don’t remember this visit, rest easy. It’s a joke for Mr Fenwick, who I am sure would love to meet you one day.

One response to “Café with a view #10: OXO Tower Bar”

  1. Interestingly, it’s part of the conditions of the licence given to Harvey Nichols who run the cafe that they have to allow out on to the balcony anyone who just wants to admire the view regardless of whether they’re using the cafe or not.

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