Red Star

by Jo Kenny

It’s no good heading into a gig with a rumbling stomach that’ll rival the bass guitar! So before heading into the O2 Academy we planned a visit to Red Star; a very nearby Japanese noodle bar. It opens at 6, and thinking we had plenty of time we stopped off for a pre-dinner pint. But we pitched up 6:10pm to find the rows of tables jam packed with people! This place get’s full in lightening quick time, seems to be a popular haunt for students!

Red Star Oxford menu

I spent a lot of time mulling over the large selection of sides on offer, but my main came from one of the boards. Couldn’t resist a bento box as it’s been so long since I had one!

Red Star Oxford gyoza

Red Star Oxford chicken satay

The gyoza were absolutely stuffed with meat and were really tasty. But I found them a little too stodgy as they lacked that lovely crispy underbelly for texture. The chicken satay sticks were again a generous portion but they tasted a little bland, when I order satay I expect a big peanut punch in the mouth!

Red Star Oxford miso soup

My bento box arrived with a little bowl of miso soup before hand, which had that classic miso taste: a little weird and very comforting!

Red Star Oxford duck bento box spring rolls

Bento box was the right choice. I get so excited when they arrive with all their little compartments of different foods! I’ve got to say for £7.80 the portion was fantastic, especially the giant helping of sticky duck sat on top of a sweet & sour style sauce and juicy chunks of pineapple. The rice was satisfyingly sticky and the little spring rolls were perfect for dipping into the little pool of sweet chilli sauce.

Red Star is a little hit & miss and some elements are too Westernised for my liking. But hey, the food is cheap and the portions are big, I can see why they thrive in a student town! Red Star serve you quick and expect you to pay up and leave pronto when you’re done eating, so it’s a good place to get a speedy bite before heading to the O2.

Red Star Oxford Metronomy

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