Second chances with Dirty Bones Oxford?

Do you believe in giving people, persons, establishments second chances? How often do you dish out second chances and what drives you to offer them. I am someone who has a strong opinion on giving second chances to people and even establishments. There are times when I strongly feel it is not worth the time or the effort to offer someone a second chance. Then there are times like these where I feel its prudent of me to do so before my final decision.

Dirty Bones Oxford


It might come as a shock to some that I returned to Dirty Bones Oxford once more for another dinner date. I had mentioned when I shared my disappointing experience that I wouldn’t base my opinion on one meal. Because of all the positive reviews I read about Dirty Bones branches I London, I was convinced Oxford could do better. Yes they had some teething issues but I won’t relent on the quality of the food we had. The side dish from hell comes to mind, this was a dish they need to rethink and re-brand. So how did Dirty Bones fair the second time round and would I recommend them?

Disclaimer: We were guest of Dirty Bones Oxford regardless opinions shared here are 100% our personal experience.

To those who don’t know, Dirty Bones are an American restaurant and cocktail bar with branches in London and Oxford. They offer American comfort foods and drinks served alongside some nice USA vibes from Diddy to Aloe Blacc. It was founded back in 2013 and has seeing successes across the three London branches which have extended to Oxford.

Better than the last at Dirty Bones Oxford

When we visited Dirty Bones Oxford the last time {29-Dec-2017}, I complained big time about the food. The service was slightly off-putting too but it was bearable for the number of people present. For that reason, I want to share our recent experience of dinner at Dirty Bones in terms of Food and Service.

The Service {4/5}

I was late for our 8-pm booking due to train delays but my plus one arrived on time. She mentioned that there was a huge difference between then and now, staff was more attentive. We put it down to the night not being super busy but it was still nice that the service had greatly improved.

When I arrived, I was warmly greeted and went straight to my seat, a few minutes later waiter came over. We needed a few more minutes to choose the drinks but we opted to ask for recommendations. I went for the Mutt’s Nuts and my plus one chose The Fab, both really good cocktails.

Throughout the night, the waiters were friendly and checking on ALL the customers giving them an incredible service. It was refreshing to see waiters not rushed off their feet and could chat with customers as they came and went. We were definitely impressed by this and felt we were experiencing what Londoners have been getting.

Dirty Bones Oxford

Dirty Bones Oxford

The Food {5/5}

If you read my last review then you know how I felt about the food, let me ease your feels it gets better. As I type this I am munching on my leftover mac and cheese and it is the best I have ever had. When we visited after Christmas, they had no Crab and Lobster Roll, had no cider and the tacos was like cardboard. The second time around they had it all and so we ordered the Crab and Lobster roll and, well, someone say HALLELUJAH.

I know what you’re thinking, how can I say hallelujah when I am currently munching on leftovers from them. Well, you see the chef outdid himself on the starters; mac balls and cheeseburger dumplings. These are sizable portions which turned out to be very filling especially tagged with a cocktail. By the time the mains were coming, we were starting to fill full already. We still enjoyed the mains and to our surprise, Dirty Bones does offer doggy bags to carry your food home. Which I did not know this before but glad I did not waste any food because I couldn’t finish it all.

Dirty Bones Oxford

Overall Experience

Because we were once bitten at this restaurant, we were shy and set no expectations at all. Well I am glad to report our experience the second time round is one that screens, I AM RECOMMENDING THIS OXFORD EATERY. The service was impeccable, the ambiance was incredible, the cocktails were intoxicating {in a good way}. We are so happy to have given Dirty Bones Oxford a second chance, a chance they used wisely and improved on.

The staff was super friendly and not just to us but to everyone, they smiled at everyone and spent the time. It’s always nice when you’re treated like the queen of Sheba walking on gold petals. I like speaking to other customers to see their opinions and it was definitely favourable.

Dirty Bones Oxford

What you should know!!

  • Book in advance other via phone or online booking system
  • Restaurant located on roof terrace of the Westgate shopping centre next to Pho
  • You can take food home if you don’t finish
  • Optional 12.5% is added to the bill, of course you could add more, personal choice
  • Allergen information is available, ask the waiting staff
  • Find Dirty bones on Instagram or Website

Dirty Bones Oxford

Our food and drinks recommendations!!

  • Starter: Mac Balls {Fried taleggio mac & cheese balls topped with sweet chilli sauce}
  • Main: Crab and Lobster Roll {Fresh crab and lobster with black garlic and fresh herbs on a toasted roll. Served with a side of taleggio mac & cheese}
  • Dessert: Butter baby milkshake {Creamy butterscotch, vanilla ice cream and milk} OR Coffee & Donuts {Coffee gelato with fresh sugared donuts}


Leave a Reply


  1. Melanie Edjourian
    January 15, 2018 / 6:33 pm

    To be honest it depends on how bad the experience was. It sounds like you did the right thing returning there. I love the sound of those cocktails OMG they sound amazing!!!!! The food sounds interesting too. The crab and lobster roll sounds delicious.

  2. January 12, 2018 / 8:05 pm

    I’m glad you gave them a second chance, sometimes things just happen to make our first experience not the best. I would love to try those cheese balls. Thinking about them has made me a bit hungry.

  3. Farrah Less Gomez
    January 12, 2018 / 2:12 pm

    I love the ambiance of this restaurant and the food very well presented. Definitely a well deserve second chance, there’s always room for improvement . We consumer have to be more open about it.

  4. chubskulit
    January 12, 2018 / 1:10 pm

    The ambiance is so relaxing and the food definitely looks delicious! Their business name is very interesting!

  5. January 12, 2018 / 12:24 pm

    It sounds like you had a much better experience this time. The mac balls and cheeseburger dumplings sound amazing!

  6. Jonalyn Macandili-Mendoza
    January 12, 2018 / 9:04 am

    Oh yes, I am one of those people who are giving second chances. I have some experiences which were not as good as expected but were changed during my second visit. Glad you experience the same.

  7. Pam W
    January 12, 2018 / 2:52 am

    I have a hard time giving restaurants second chances sometimes. It sounds like you giving it a second chance was a great idea.

  8. valmg
    January 12, 2018 / 1:18 am

    Mac balls and cheeseburger dumplings both sound yummy to me. It’s great you gave the restaurant a second chance.

  9. January 12, 2018 / 12:26 am

    It is good to hear that your second time at this restaurant was so much better than the first! Sometimes it obviously is worth giving places a second chance.

  10. Heather
    January 11, 2018 / 8:51 pm

    We rarely give a restaurant a second chance but after reading this, I’m reconsidering. It’s good to hear that your second experience was so pleasant!

  11. January 11, 2018 / 8:45 pm

    Yes, I do give restaurants another chance, because you just never know if they were having an off day. I’m glad your opinion changed! I’m pretty sure I would love those mac balls.

  12. Marcie W.
    January 11, 2018 / 6:51 pm

    Good for you for giving the spot a second try! I am not usually so generous, especially when it comes to food, but it seems to have been an excellent decision. The entire experience sounds amazing!

  13. Jenny Austin Finney
    January 11, 2018 / 4:57 pm

    I’m so glad you had a great second visit to this place. The place looks amazing and someplace i would enjoy visiting and the food looked delish!

  14. Sarah Honey
    January 11, 2018 / 4:09 pm

    The food looks amazing. Glad you gave it a second chance. It looks like they have worked out some of the problems.

  15. Candy Kage
    January 11, 2018 / 4:03 pm

    We have given restaurant second chances before. We don have this one in our area. Management has much to do about how a place is well run or not.

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