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Best Pub Food in Oxford

Oxford is a fascinating place to visit with many historic university spires and buildings, and lovely walks (and punting) along the River Thames. You’re bound to need food whilst you are exploring the city, so we hope you’ll find a pub that you fancy from this selection of the best ones:

The Perch

© The Perch

There has been a pub on the site of The Perch for over 800 years, and it is said to be one of the oldest pubs in Oxford.

It is in a gorgeous setting right by the Thames,  with a lovely pub garden that everyone can enjoy. The Perch say that they are a refuge for everyone, and they always welcome families with muddy boots, children and dogs!

The pub is famous around the world, as it was one of the pubs shown in the Inspector Morse TV series. 

© The Perch

The menu at the Perch has a traditional British Farmhouse theme, with seasonal variations to show off the best of their fresh, quality ingredients.

They serve great British classics like pies, casseroles, home-made bread, pickles and preserves, hedgreow desserts and a delicious ploughman’s lunch.

On Sunday the menu features traditional roasts such as British Grass-fed Topside of Beef, Slow Roasted Belly of Pork with apple sauce, and Nut and Lentil Roast with beetroot and horseradish relish.  All roasts are served with Yorkshire pudding, roast potatoes, vegetables and gravy.

© The Perch

There’s also a special Children’s Menu featuring child-friendly favourites such as Chicken Breast and Chips, or Fish and Chips,  and a Vegan Menu featuring dishes such as Chargrilled Artichoke and Nut and Lentil Roast.



The Punter

© The Punter

As its name implies, The Punter is set on the banks of the River Thames, with a beautiful garden where you can enjoy your meal. It serves vegetarian and vegan food, making excellent use of seasonal and local ingredients.

The menu features starters such as Grilled Tomato Gazpacho, Tomato and Basil Bruschetta with Avocado and Parmesan, and Chargrilled English Asparagus with Jersey Royal Cream and Herb Salad.

© The Punter

For your main course, you can choose from dishes such as Mushroom and Lentil Burger with Beef Tomato, Thai Green Vegetable Broth, or Crispy Polenta with Ratatouille.

All of the fruit and vegetables that The Punter Kitchen uses are sourced locally, and you can buy them for yourself from Pickle and Lime on the Botley Road in Oxford.



The Jericho Tavern

© Jericho Tavern

The Jericho Tavern is a classic local pub with contemporary features, tasty food, and an amazing atmosphere. It has a stylish, modern bar and a spacious beer garden where you can enjoy the excellent food and drink on the menu.

© Jericho Tavern

The food is traditional tasty pub grub - burgers, southern fried chicken, fish and chips. There is a vegetarian menu, and of course, they have deliciously indulgent desserts!

There is something for everyone at the bar - a seasonal range of craft beers, cask ales, ciders, perfectly poured cocktails,  wine, gin and more!

© Jericho Tavern

The Jericho Tavern is known for its appearance in the Inspector Morse TV series - Morse is seen disappearing into the Tavern at the end of “The Silent World of Nicholas Quinn” episode.



The Old Tom

© Old Tom

The Old Tom is a great fusion of the traditional English pub with delicious authentic Thai food. 

The pub is situated right in the heart of Oxford - just near the Carfax Tower, which is at the centre of the city. 

© Old Tom

There has been a pub at the Old Tom site since the end of the 17th Century so it is one of the oldest pubs in Oxford. That means the pub has been serving town and gown for over three centuries!

The food served at The Old Tom is the very best of traditional Thai food, cooked using the finest quality Thai spices and ingredients:- tempura batter, seafood, noodle bowls, roast duck, green curry, jasmine rice, spring rolls and much more.



Big Society

© The Big Society

Big Society are best known for their cheeseburgers and fried chicken, as well as their hot dogs and philly cheesesteaks.

The menu has a selection of burgers, lots of different types of fries (chilli, cheese, sweet potato, buffalo), chicken pieces, nachos and hot dogs. If you fancy something sweet there are waffles, vegan brownies and ice cream shakes. 

© The Big Society

If you’re at Big Society between 12 and 3 you can choose from their brunch selection of sausage and egg, BLT or egg ‘n’ avocado.

This pub, with an American theme and cool atmosphere, is right next to the Ultimate Picture Palace, so it’s handy for a bite to eat before catching a film.



The Magdalen Arms

Magdalen Arms
Magdalen Arms © Patricia Niven

The Magdalen Arms is in an elegant building on the Iffley Road - just down the road from the famous Magdalen Bridge. 

It is open from Tuesday evening to Sunday evening each week - they serve a lunch and a la carte menu each day (no lunch on Tuesday) and a special dinner menu on Sunday.

The menu is traditional hearty food, such as Gloucester Old Spot Schnitzel, stuffed whole globe artichoke, a Spanish sharing plate or saddle of lamb. There is a special Sunday roast menu each weekend.

Magdalen Arms
Magdalen Arms © Patricia Niven

The Magdalen Arms puddings are a delight, with logan and elderberry tart, muscat creme caramel and chocolate nemesis cake on the menu. 

There is an innovative ‘heat at home’ shop in the pub where you can pop in and ask to take any dish from the menu to heat and eat at home (depending on availability of course). 



The Abingdon Arms

© Abingdon Arms

It’s worth the trip from Oxford to the pretty rural village of Beckley for a meal at The Abingdon Arms. This quaint village pub is situated in the centre of a nature reserve, so there are lots of beautiful walks in the area for a post-Sunday lunch ramble.

Alex, head chef at the Abingdon Arms, prides himself on creating hearty home-cooked meals using local, fresh produce.

The A La Carte menu has starters such as Organic baked brie in filo pastry with honey and walnuts, in-house smoked duck breast, and Long sliced Wye Valley Smoked salmon, served with radishes, capers, lemon and toasted bread.

© Abingdon Arms

The mains dishes include classics such as Cornish Haddock in Beer Batter with chips, Slow Cooked Port Belly with mashed potatoes and vegetables, and Rosemary and Lemon Roasted Half Chicken.

Don’t forget the puddings - you can choose from delicious treats such as Plum, Mango and Cherry Crumble with vanilla ice cream, Chocolate Brownie with Cherry Garnish, and the magnificent Plum and Poached Rhubarb Clafoutis with raspberry pavlova ice cream (it’s recommended you share this one!)

There are loads of tables outside so you can soak up the wonderful Oxfordshire countryside whilst you eat.



The White House by Tap Social

© The Whitehouse by Tap Social

The White House is a community Cafe Bar and Kitchen in the centre of Oxford. It’s in a grade 2 listed building just a 2-minute walk away from Folly Bridge on the River Thames.

It serves delicious food made from seasonal local produce, serves coffee which is locally roasted, and stocks Oxford-brewed craft beer.

So if you’re looking for somewhere in Oxford for a coffee,  meal or drinks with your friends or family, The White House is the perfect place. There are cosy log-burning stoves to gather around in the winter, and a great beer garden for the summer.

The Whitehouse
The Whitehouse © Ian Wallman

The delicious food menu has plenty of choice,  with classic pub food such as burgers, lemon and lime battered cod and chips, and chicken wellington, with vegetarian options too.

On Sundays, you can choose from delicious roasts such as beef sirloin, pork belly with crackling, and herb-crusted cod. 



Jude The Obscure

© Jude The Obscure

Within easy reach of the city centre, Jude the Obscure is a traditional British sports pub with an award-winning kitchen right in the heart of Jericho.

There are TVs throughout the pub so you can watch all the best live sport action, and they have a regular pub quiz, which is said to be the best pub quiz in Oxford!

Jude The Obscure’s menu has traditional pub food, with small plates, sharers, sandwiches and toasties, fish and chips, pies, and classics such as steak and chips, or ham egg and chips. 

© Jude The Obscure

You will, of course, find your favourite delicious desserts on the menu - warm chocolate fudge cake, cheesecake and apple pie.

It has a great heated beer garden (where you can take your dog and children) which also has TVs so you can enjoy the sports action outside too.

Food is served every day from 11am to 9pm at Jude The Obscure.


I hope this selection of the best pubs has given you food for thought when you’re looking for a pub to eat in whilst visiting Oxford!

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