Staking out Roxie for Dinner on my Doorstep:
I do love reviewing local restaurants. Roxie in Putney is, a healthy walk or a couple of stops on the tube from where I live in Fulham. In fact, with three branches, there is one that is slightly closer in Fulham and Putney has apparently been added because of the popularity of both the Earlsfield and Fulham branches
It manages to have a timeless feel though, the sort of place that you’d think had been there for years.
We started the evening with a glass of fizz each while we waited for our starters. My companion’s Fig, Pancetta Ham and Feta Salad was pretty as a picture and apparently delicious.
My grilled salt and pepper calamari with home made aioli didn’t look quite so beautiful, but tasted delicious. The sort of food that I crave for after a hard day at work, simple, clean flavours with no fuss.
Roxie specialise in steak, so we took the advice of Rui, the manager and each ordered a fillet. Focussing on the critical issue of sides, we might just have been a little over-enthusiastic. Part of the issue was that we both had a craving for fries. And, I wanted to try the heritage tomato salad, while my companion doesn’t like them. And, while some kind of green vegetable seemed necessary, wild mushrooms sounded much more fun. So, we ordered everything. The fries were perfectly crispy on the outside, light and fluffy inside. The sauteed wild mushrooms had a good mixture of fungi and were nicely cooked and buttery. Courgettes were nicely grilled and definitely a good way to bump up your five or seven a day, while the tomato salad was colourful and well flavoured. And, the portion sizes were really quite generous. Woops!
The main event though, without a doubt, was the steak. Apparently prepared with a special rub or marinade – we were not allowed to know the secret, but whatever was used did make for a delicious piece of meat.
Cutting into the steak, a perfect rare centre, complementing the nicely charred exterior
Our plates were cleaned! We tried two of the sauces – a home made bearnaise and peppercorn. Both great, my money would be on the bearnaise next time, although I’d be interested to try the chimichurri too.
The wine list starts at £18.75 for a bottle, but we were tempted by the Hartenberg Cabernet Shiraz 2010 Stellenbosch from South Africa. Since the menu claims it is the house favourite, wh were we to argue? At just under £30 this was a classy addition to the meal.
Of course dessert wasn’t really necessary, and yet…
My apple and pear crumble had a good crunch to the topping and gently spiced soft fruit underneath, with just the right amount of bite left.
Key Lime Pie was also a hit and disappeared in a trice.
So, all in, a great success with menu prices that make this an affordable treat (a decent sized fillet steak is just £13.95).
Roxie was started by South African husband and wife team, Richard and Sue Hollway, along with Portuguese Rui Espanhol as general manager. Meat is sourced from Smithfields, the restaurant has a long standing relationship with their supplier and there’s an apparent and genuine respect for the importance of that partnership. We were told it took Richard years to find what he was looking for, but that patience has definitely paid off and the result is something way beyond the price-tag.
I’ll definitely be back, it’s the sort of place that you really want to find around the corner from your home. And, with just a little following wind, I can claim just that.
Roxie – Putney
136 Upper Richmond Road,