I am so excited to share this gem with everyone. It is one of the first times in London that I have fully enjoyed my meal and left feeling like I got my money’s worth at a restaurant. This was a totally random girl’s night that I wasn’t even meant to attend, but boy, am I glad that I went!
Hoxley and Porter is situated on Islington’s busy Upper Street and looks like an old pub on the outside. At first, there seems to be nothing special about it. My dinner mates even expressed that they had walked past the door so many times, thinking it to be an old pub. Once you walk in, you get the feeling you are in an old train carriage. The interior has a dark and sultry atmosphere. With rich teals, dark woods and gold filigree everywhere. You immediately feel like you are transported to another time, and maybe even another place.
My advice? Go for an early dinner so that you can take full advantage of happy hour. Choose any cocktail from their signature cocktails and you will pay £5. Their cocktails are delicious! My friend and I could not decide what we wanted, so the bartender chose for us and we received beautifully made cocktails with smiley faces made out of fruit. The small gestures mean the most in a city where everyone is in a hurry and only out to turn tables.
I had a two-course meal for £18. However, you can also get a 3 course for £21. I find this to be such good value for money! The menu changes frequently and all types of cuisine seem to be included from all corners of the globe.
I started with seared scallops in an Asian broth with edamame beans. The delicate flavours were impeccable and the scallops were perfectly cooked. I followed this with venison loin, potato gratin and steamed greens, which reminded me of home instantly and I could not fault either dish at all.
Hoxley and Porter is so lively! The music is enough to keep you there for hours, but the patrons add to the feel too. The bar area has dining tables in it so you can sit there and get some entertainment with your meal. There are other seating areas to choose from if you are looking for a more intimate setting.
I left with a full belly, a smile on my face and I was slightly giddy from the cocktails. Which is how every dinner in London should end! Whether you go for the dining experience, or just pop in for one drink, I would recommend this quirky little venue every single time!