May 19, 2014 | 17 comments

It took me ages to try Barbecoa as it’s been open a while. I have no idea what took me so long, it’s just one of those places that I’ve always known I’ve wanted to try, but never really got round to it. Last week, I was in the area and decided to skip the rush hour commute and pop in for an early dinner.

Barbecoa was founded by Jamie Oliver and focuses predominantly on meat/steak dishes. It has it’s own in house butchers (open to the public too) and they handpick some of the best meat in Britain, and dry age it for up to 70 days. They do serve some fish and vegetable dishes for those that aren’t particular to meat and the cooking methods vary between texas pit smokers, tandoors, fire pits, robaba grills and wood fired ovens.

Location wise, it’s situated just opposite St Paul’s and the views of the cathedral are nothing short of breathtaking. While walking there from the city we caught it’s reflection in the side of Barbecoa at just the right time of day, and it took my breath away.  I actually had to stand in this spot for a good 10 minutes just admiring the view. I honestly feel so lucky to live in London and try not to take a second of it for granted. St Paul’s is one of my favourite landmarks (next to Big Ben) – so seeing it reflected in the glass windows of Barbecoa  just put me in such a good mood.


When you get inside you can still see beautiful views of St Paul’s from the windows wherever you land up seated…


Although there was other stuff on the menu – we were there for the meat so ordered some crispy pig cheeks with an apple sauce to nibble on while we chose our mains. These are seriously addictive. Imagine the most perfect crackling you’ve ever had…. then imagine it better.




I got stuck in to the bubbles and ordered prosecco with St. Germain Elderflower & Black Raspberry Liqueur…


While my dinner guest found great amusement in the fact that the weather was doing rather weird things to my hair (men will never understand)…


I went with the 225g fillet steak. The waitress didn’t understand me when I did the classic South African thing of saying “I’d like it medium, but not too raw. It must be pink in the middle, but not too pink“…. She gave me a blank look and said “so you want it medium?” and I said “yes, but not raw medium, cooked medium” …

*cue blank stare from the waitress…..*

It makes perfect sense in my head but she did look at me like I was mad. I feel like I need to explain. It’s completely normal in South Africa to order in that way. If I’d said that to a waiter he’d know that I don’t want it too raw, and definitely not kicking or mooing – it must be cooked all the way through but still pink in the middle.

Anyway…. I know that’s a strange thing we do, but back home this kind of thing is normal (really).

Needless to say, the steak came, and it was really delicious….


… but was unfortunately a little too raw for my liking. I still ate most of it, I just left the very middle bits.

(I know any real foodie reading this will roll their eyes and say “but that’s the perfect medium steak Ashleigh” – and yes, it probably is, but it’s not the kind of medium I like… I never said I was right – I am just fussy…)


He ordered the pork belly with korean slaw, and honestly, it was the best pork belly I’ve ever tried…


It was so tender and literally melted in your mouth…


We also ordered some duck fat chips:


And some bone marrow which I ate most of, and smeared all over my steak….(I can’t find the description of what this was flavoured with – sorry, but it was AMAZING!!!!!!):




All in all a lovely meal – we loved everyting we ate.

No frills and whistles and the views definitely make it the perfect place for an impromptu date night, should you wish.

Barbecoa on Urbanspoon

  1. I adoooooore bone marrow!!! When we go to Kream, I always have bone marrow as a starter – yum!! Have you been to Kream? It’s my favourite restaurant…next time you come to SA, we’ll go there for a treat! :)

  2. This looks so tasty. That shot of St Pauls is incredible. Seriously it should be on a postcard or something!

    That steak looks perfect. But, I normally order my meat really rare. My ordering goes a little along the lines of. ‘Literally blue. Just cook the outside for 30 seconds and leave the middle raw. If there’s no blood on my plate, don’t send it out to me.’

    I think meat and how it’s cooked is so important and people’s preferences vary massively!

    Katie <3

    • Thanks Katie – yes I don’t like my meat to still have a heartbeat – haha! It must be DEAD.
      The shot of St Paul’s is incredible isn’t it? I think I may frame it – it was even more beautiful in person, the picture doesn’t do it justice… x

  3. It looks stylish and delicious! Is it in the New One Change Mall? I once was on top of it at the Madison lounge, the view is very similar! Astounding!

  4. This looks like an amazing dinner! I love bone marrow! I personally like my steak about like that…I want it to be bloody still. That seems more medium rare than medium but I know meat is cooked a little differently outside the states so I don’t know what the rule of thumb is there. The pork belly looks like it is cooked perfectly! Yum!

  5. Hi Ashleigh. I love your blog! I totally get what you mean what you mean with cooked medium by the way. Looking forward to you future posts.

  6. Hi Ashleigh. Love your blog! I totally get what you mean by cooked medium by the way. I guess different places have different terms for things. Anyways, am looking forward to your future posts.. :)

  7. I struggle also with getting my steaks just right. Love the taste of the almost raw bits but then my mind takes over and I realise what I’m eating and that puts me off lol. Food looks fantastic though! x

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