When a chef recommends a restaurant, it’s a safe assumption that it’s going to be top tier.
My editor and I sauntered up to Westgate’s roof terrace on a rather glorious Saturday afternoon and headed to Dirty Bones.
From the decor and food ingredients to the cocktail recipes, everything about Dirty Bones is transparently New York-inspired. Despite being a chain, this is not something that screams out at you when entering Dirty Bones.
It could easily be an independent restaurant by the way in which the menu choices and quality holds itself up with gastro-pubs in London. Whilst briefly waiting for our table we were invited into the cocktail bar to lounge with a drink. As the non-designated driver I went straight in with a Dirty Bastard, - Bulleit Rye whiskey, Bacardi Carta Blanca rum, fresh raspberries, lemon, maple syrup and chocolate bitters - which was a glorious balance of smooth flavours.
For our meal choices (a process which took some time to finalise) I went for Beef short rib tacos, and Jamie swiped the Flat iron steak - as sharing sides we selected the roasted cauliflower and cheesey truffle fries. Everything was rich, but not overbearing - the flavours were very prominent, especially with the combination of ingredients.
The pickled red onions added a pleasent sourness and crispness to the 12 hour braised beef in my tacos. But the roasted cauliflower stole the show for me - something relatively simple turned pungent after being infused with madras curry powder, capers, sultanas, keffir lime, and almonds. It was layer on layer of delicious flavours.
Jamie said: “The steak was abosolutely gorgeous and was cooked exactly how I like it - medium rare. It’s my favourite cut of steak and simply cooked to perfection - a tsunami of taste sensations. As for the roasted cauliflower, it was the best thing I have ever eaten! A lot of charring occurred in both these dishes which gave them a smokey element - all very melt in the mouth.“
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Dirty Bones, Oxford: friendly service, cosy and casual dining, and superb food. The Ocelot recommends! For further information visit www.dirty-bones.com/locations/oxford