Ponti’s Italian Kitchen, Oxford Circus

Having had a little time off work lately, one day I decided to treat myself to a day out shopping in the West End. I took a little break from my hard days shopping to meet my sister for lunch and was delighted to have somewhere new to try when she told me to meet her at Ponti’s just behind Oxford Circus. Considering how close it is to the ridiculously busy Oxford Circus, Ponti’s Italian Kitchen is tucked away on a surprisingly quiet back street, ideally situated for shoppers looking for a spot of lunch away from the crowds.
The large dining room feels really open and airy and is bustling with activity in a welcoming and relaxed way that is complimented by the friendly and helpful staff.
We began proceedings with a few nibbles. Enormous Italian olives came served on ice with a crispy flatbread and tapenade on the side. The olives were plump and juicy, the tapenade was nothing to write home about but a nice little extra on the side.
Garlic bread was nicely presented on a wooden platter, in flat ‘pizza’ bread form, it hit the spot. Nice and garlicky, crispy with just the right amount of chewiness, definitely among the better pizza style garlic breads I’ve had.

For my main I went with my sister’s recommendation of the grilled minute steak. It was a really nice size for a lunch dish and came with crispy fries which were well seasoned and more-ish. It would have been nice to have a little salad as well or perhaps even a salad instead of fries option for the more health conscious diner. The steak was really well seasoned with an overall all peppered flavour and juicy sun blushed tomatoes. It was however slightly over done for my liking. It was a good medium where I prefer a medium-rare. I found it a little too chewy for my liking and it could have been juicier, but I guess it depends how you like your steak.

We were taking our time and being quite leisurely over lunch so we spent about an hour and a half in Ponti’s, but if you were on a time limit you could easily be in and out within an hour. Ponti’s Italian Kitchen isn’t the best or most authentic Italian restaurant I’ve ever eaten in and it’s obviously geared towards the tourist market, but for a quick simple lunch for a catch up over a glass of wine it is a good place to pop in for an hour or so.

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