Completing LardButty’s A to Z of restaurant reviews with the letter X at Xquisite, West Norwood (SE27)
The LardButty Index (A to Z) has been complete for a long time, with the exception of the letter X. A review of a restaurant beginning with X is long overdue but they’re few and far between. And so – with some enthusiastic nudging from H – we arranged an outing to Xquisite, a Caribbean restaurant just off the South Circular next to Tulse Hill train station.
I made the reservation through Open Table whose listing is appealing enough, in contrast with the Xquisite website (2015) where the food gallery is not enticing. But the website says that the restaurant is under new management and that the website will be improved soon. So we decided to visit and find out for ourselves.
Arriving at 7pm tonight, a Friday evening, I’m the first customer dining in although there are a few collecting take-aways. The restaurant is nicely lit with interesting art work (immediately appealing) and staff greet me promptly and are friendly and helpful. It’s happy hour until 8pm (2 for 1 on cocktails) so we start with a hurricane (light rum, dark rum, passion juice, lime, sugar gum grenadine). With island tunes playing from the DJ booth, I’m transported to being away on holiday. And that’s a nice way to end the working week.
We share starters:
The hot pepper sauce on the prawns is gorgeous and spicy (even if it does mean licking the prawn shells and faces before peeling!) and the dumplings are like a dense Yorkshire pudding.
For main course, we share curry goat – slow cooked, really tender if full of the bones that the meat has fallen off, in a Jamaican curry sauce (lovely flavours but overly salty) with rice and kidney beans @ £9.00, jerk pork – tender pork in a sticky sauce @ £13.00 (really good but also overly salty) and sweet potato sticks @ £3.50 (perfect).
On the wine list there are two prosecco options: a ‘prosecco wine’ @ £20.00 and a ‘prosecco sparkling wine’ @ £30.00. They are both sparkling proseccos, the difference being one is a screw-cap bottle, the other is corked like champagne. We went for the screw-cap. We while away a leisurely 3.5 hours here, during which time the restaurant fills up with other customers including a party who are celebrating with a special buffet.
The verdict: Formal Caribbean restaurants serving high-end quality food don’t seem to be that common in London; this is one of them. Good food, reasonably priced. The experience of feeling transported away on holiday was pretty special too. If Xquisite was in my neighbourhood, I’d go back.
~ Lardbutty rating: 3 / 5
~ Type: Caribbean
~ Address: 7a Station Rise, London
~ Postcode: SE27 9BW
~ Nearest station: Tulse Hill, West Dulwich, West Norwood
~ Website + menus: Xquisite website
~ Photos on flickr: images of Xquisite food
~ Location: Xquisite map
Filed under: Caribbean, LardButty food / restaurant reviews | Tagged: 3 / 5, 3/5, Caribbean, Caribbean restaurant, cocktail menu, cocktails, Herne Hill, Jamaican curry, Jerk pork, Lardbutty, LardButty London, SE27, SE27 9BW, South Circular, south east London, Station Rise, Tulse Hill, Xquisite, Xquisite cocktails, Xquisite menu | Leave a comment »