Oxford
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421 listings
Living In Oxford
Email
assistant@theiogroup.net
Phone
01865 742211
Website
http://www.livinginoxford.com

Listings

Justice League

12:00 am, 17th November 2017 until 12:00 am, 17th December 2017

Only The Brave

12:00 am, 10th November 2017 until 12:00 am, 10th December 2017

A Bad Mom’s Christmas

12:00 am, 3rd November 2017 until 12:00 am, 3rd December 2017

The Wind in the Willows

12:00 am, 2nd December 2017 until 12:00 am, 30th December 2017

Villiers Quartet

7:30 pm, 24th November 2017 until 8:45 pm, 24th November 2017

I Fagiolini: The English Cornett & Sackbut Ensemble

7:30 pm, 17th November 2017 until 8:45 pm, 17th November 2017

Christmas at Blenheim

12:00 am, 24th November 2017 until 12:00 am, 1st January 2018

Mozart at the Manor

12:00 am, 24th November 2017 until 12:00 am, 24th November 2017

Oxford’s Christmas Light Festival

12:00 am, 17th November 2017 until 12:00 am, 19th November 2017

OUP Philosophy Festival

12:00 am, 16th November 2017 until 12:00 am, 19th November 2017

OXFORD TROBADORS with NADAU and PEIRAGUDA

7:30 pm, 20th November 2017 until 9:30 pm, 20th November 2017

Happy Death Day

12:00 am, 20th October 2017 until 12:00 am, 20th November 2017

Vue

GAF

YHA

Reviews

  • The Lady Nuffield Home

    The Lady Nuffield Home is a small residential home for elderly men and women and aims to provide a high standard of care, based on the individual needs of the resident whilst enabling them to remain as independent as possible. The Lady Nuffield Home is situated in Summertown with easy access to Oxford and with good transport links to nearby towns. A range of local amenities are within walking distance, including shops, restaurants and doctors’ surgeries. The Home is Victorian in origin with modern purpose built extensions added over recent years giving an air of light, spacious accommodation. Rooms are comfortable and furnished to a high standard. Communal areas have a warm welcoming feel generating a sense that an older person wishing to live at the Home would be in an environment where they feel safe and well cared for. We provide care for 30 older people, and we place the rights, wellbeing and health of our residents at the forefront of our philosophy of care, treating each resident as a valued individual. We are supported in doing so by the local GP Practices and District Nursing Team. Social interaction is encouraged through a full and varied programme of activities to enable residents to realise their full potential and enhance their quality of life in older age. A typical week of activities may consist of exercise, art, craft, poetry, crossword and entertainers. A regular church service is taken by the local clergy twice a month. Trips and outings are arranged according to residents’ preferences. We consider every resident’s life history, interests, likes and dislikes when planning an activity programme. It is important to us that wellbeing is maintained through an active and healthy lifestyle. Person-centered care through activities in a dignified manner is part of the Home’s ethos. Our Activity Coordinator creates a suitable activity plan for each resident. We encourage our residents to maintain their independence, whilst experienced care assistants provide assistance with daily living activities in accordance with their needs. Rated 9.6/10 by CareHome.co.uk
    Read full review here
    Reviewed on
    2017-11-02 12:53:23
  • Bear & Ragged Staff

    The first French Revolution started in 1789, by which time The Bear had already been going for over 200 years. Fast forward another 200 years or so, and a second French Revolution is just about to get underway, although fortunately the chopping here is of a culinary rather than a bodily nature! The Head Chef, Flavien, arrived at The Bear & Ragged Staff in August 2017. Flavien was previously the Pastry Sous-Chef at Hartwell House, and prior to that, worked as Sous Chef at The Feathers in Woodstock and at Silky Oaks Lodge in Australia . Flavien’s new menu, launched in late September, is his first attempt to bring his style of cooking and personality to this part of Oxfordshire. First things first though, a visit to The Bear & Ragged Staff wouldn’t be complete without an initial detour to the bar to take in the atmosphere (and a couple of drinks); the crooked beams and sloping floors date back to the early 1600’s when it served as a pub and provide a real sense of occasion for any evening out. The restaurant annexe is rather more recent; a modern wing stretching out from the bar, seamlessly transitioning linking the old and the new. Talking of ‘new’, we kicked off with Cornish Scallops and a Rabbit, Orange & Green Peppercorn Terrine. Both were fresh and inventive - I particularly liked the little pot of homemade chutney on the side for dipping alongside the cream cheese scone, both combining attractively on the black slate plates. All the food here is locally-sourced wherever possible; well, the seafood is obviously from slightly further afield, but the duck comes from Aylesbury, the pork hails from Witney, and...you get the picture, right?! Ah, the duck, the duck! After debating at length whether we should sample different mains for ‘review purposes’, we couldn’t decide who would retain ‘ownership’ of the duck…so we both had it. Good job too, as it was mouth-wateringly delicious and definitely not for sharing; two large pink tranches flanked by a central stack of sweet potatoes dauphinoise, surrounded by a rich meaty jus. Flavien informed us afterwards that the dauphinoise was a particular speciality from the restaurant in Girona he had worked in, whilst the jus was inspired from the kitchens of Joel Robuchon. Dessert (not usually taken, but again for ‘review purposes’ only!) revealed the delightful ‘deconstructed lemon meringue’, whereby the component parts were taken apart and re-layered in an ice cream cone – an absolute winner! The menus are set to change here every 10 weeks, so if you do want to sample any of these dishes, best get along here quickly before the Dec/Jan menu comes into force... wow, Christmas isn’t all that far away after all!
    Read full review here
    Reviewed on
    2017-11-02 12:51:55
  • The House

    Two is usually company, and three might occasionally be considered a crowd, but four is definitely the ideal number for cocktails! So it was that we turned up at The House on a busy Friday evening, all prepped and ready to go. We were a diverse group - a writer, a business coach, an entrepreneur and a designer - so we thought, for a bit of fun, we’d choose each other’s cocktails, to match our respective moods and personalities. ‘The House’ does actually feel like home, only a cooler, more designer-clad variation. Cosy banquettes and small mood-lit tables line the long room which leads through to a black granite-topped altar (I mean bar!) - impressive but not overly obtrusive. It feels like a chef’s counter, where you can sit and watch the bartenders knock up one of the 50 or so cocktails from the menu (staff receive up to 4 weeks of training and have to prove to the managers that they know any cocktail off by heart) whilst nibbling on bar snacks such as nachos or hummus. The drinks are definitely the main event here though. Being four-strong, we were able to mix and match from across the menu which is helpfully broken down into categories: ‘Sparkling’ (all the fizzy cocktails, such as the Bellini), ‘Long’ (Raspado), ‘Short ‘(Bloody Mary), ‘Straight up’ (Cosmpolitan), and ‘Non-Alcoholic’ (Beach House). There is also a category named ‘Top Shelf’, containing classics such as the Mojito, Martini and Margharita (no, not just the cocktails beginning with ‘M’!) which unfortunately do not receive the ‘Happy Hour’ treatment but, rest assured, there’s still plenty to choose from! We started off outside. It was a chill October evening, but the heat lamps burned brightly on the attractively canopied terrace, attracting us like thirsty fire-flies. What better than a spot of people watching along the busy Blue Boar Passage whilst enjoying table cocktail service? Alan (the oh-so-helpful Spanish manager) came out to talk us through the list and advised us of his favourites (a Manhattan…ah yes, that was in the ‘Top Shelf’ category as well come to think of it!). Over the course of the evening, and much deliberation, we narrowed down our favourites - the Breakfast Martini (Gin, triple sec and Oxford marmalade), the Gran Bretagna (a special apricot liquor-based cocktail from the board behind the bar) and the Strawberry Colada for the non-drinkers amongst us (Strawberry, coconut and lime). Happy hour runs up until 9pm Sunday-Thursday (8pm on Friday and Saturday), and there is an upstairs room which can hold 70 people, complete with pool table and fantastic views, all available for a reasonable minimum spend. However, if you’re a student it’s even better news - cocktails are discounted all evening Sunday-Thursday.....it’s almost worth going back to studying again!
    Read full review here
    Reviewed on
    2017-11-02 12:49:03
  • Duke of Cambridge

    The Duke of Cambridge, in my eyes, is a real hidden gem within the heart of Oxford. It’s situated down one of the side streets off of St Giles so we hadn’t even realised it was there, but having spoken to friends about it since, they all had great things to say about it from their past experiences. As you walk in, you are greeted with the feeling of a relaxed, classy yet fun atmosphere with a nice mix of clientele; the smartly uniformed staff had their cocktail shakers going, preparing someone’s martini and really giving it that authentic feel. It is exactly what you want and expect of an authentic cocktail establishment. When we sat down to peruse the drinks list, we had a choice of 61 different cocktails, so you are definitely spoilt for choice; with long drinks, short drinks; sharers and even something non-alcoholic but still exciting for the designated drivers, there is something for everyone. We started with a couple of new drinks as we both wanted to try something different; the first was called a ‘Stimulant’ which had that coffee shot to wake us up after a long day in the office, and a ‘Dublin Sling’ which appealed as it has an interesting mix of ingredients. Next, we went for a ‘Rue Bourbon’ as I was intrigued having never had egg white in a drink before, and a classic ‘Apple and Elderflower Martini’: the attention to detail was excellent, with an intricate sliced apple decoration on the side that definitely became a real talking point as it appeared to be balanced on air! We decided to order a snack to share, to keep the cravings at bay, and settled on the tortilla chips with guacamole and salsa dips. I expected a small bowl for the price of £4.95, but was surprisingly impressed when a large bowl was delivered to our table with a good helping of both dips. The staff were very attentive, which certainly added to the experience; when we finished a drink they were there to clear our glasses and prepare our next choice. They had excellent knowledge, even taking the time to talk about what you like in a drink and offer suggestions to help make the right choice just for you. All in all it’s definitely a place to go for an enjoyable evening and somewhere I will certainly go again when out in Oxford either with my wife or to meet friends.
    Read full review here
    Reviewed on
    2017-11-02 12:45:25
  • The Rose

    Although not difficult to find an OK breakfast to start the day in Oxford, it is hard to find an excellent one. Most places in Oxford seem to either be hugely overpriced or with a poor selection and not always the greatest quality of food. To me, the team at The Rose on Oxford’s High Street seem to be aware of this and they work hard to be different, and it shows! I’ve been to The Rose many times before, having first visited for a photoshoot for this very magazine many years ago, and one thing I’ve always appreciated with The Rose is its consistency. It hasn’t faltered once in all the years I’ve visited. This visit was no exception. It was raining pretty heavily at the time so I was glad to get inside, it was lovely and warm and didn’t take me long to make my way to a table. I ordered the House Tea with a Rose Light breakfast, probably my favourite option on the menu. As always the tea came with everything you’d need and was a great way to warm up. It wasn’t long until my breakfast arrived and I personally think it’s the best English Breakfast you can get in the city. The quality of the produce is unmatched and it’s what clearly helps The Rose stand out from all the disguised Greasy Spoons in the area. So I highly recommend The Rose, excellent food, friendly service and a warm hospitable atmosphere.
    Read full review here
    Reviewed on
    2017-11-02 12:36:43
  • The Ben Jonson

    Our recent visit to the Ben Jonson at Weston on the Green, just 5 mins from Bicester Village and close to Oxford, was on a dark and misty October evening. Our table was booked for 7:30pm and we arrived a little early, on arrival we were greeted to a warm and friendly welcome by the bar staff. We were provided with a comprehensive list of beers, wines and soft drinks and opted for a large glass of pinot grigio and pint of Morretti. We had been offered to sit in the bar which was full of ambience and charm with a roaring log burner at one end of the bar and an open fire at the other, we decided to make our way to the dining area which we shown to by our lovely waiter Mugu. We were provided with our menus (which were clearly marked with all the potential allergen ingredients) and Mugu proceeded to explain the menu and the available soup and pie of the day options. We decided to opt for the soup of the day (mushroom with truffle oil) and the Black Pudding Scotched Hens Egg, the soup came with warm ciabatta and the Black Pudding with a salad garnish and house chutney. The starters were fresh and full of flavour, the portion sizes were more than ample for even the hungrier pallet. For the main course we had the Homemade chicken Kiev with potato mash, creamy mushroom sauce and side of seasonal vegetables, and the Homemade Pie of the day (Chicken, mushroom with a white wine sauce) with potato mash, seasonal vegetables and a rich and smooth gravy. As per the starters the main courses were delicious, the portions are plentiful so we opted to share a desert which was the exquisite Lemon Posset with pink peppercorn shortbread. Looking out the window from the dining room we saw an extensive garden area with a number of tables spread across a patio through to a lawned area, ideal for the summer or for anyone that would be brave enough for October alfresco dining! I cannot fault the Ben Jonson the current owners have invested a lot of time and money refurbishing the premises and the money has been well spent. We had a super meal with great service and value. We recommend you visit soon you will not be disappointed.
    Read full review here
    Reviewed on
    2017-11-02 12:19:33
  • Rigoletto

    There is an English saying: “All Shell and No Substance” – The opposite couldn’t be more true for this little Italian gem. Not far from Oxford and on the edge of the beautiful and quaint village of Middleton Stoney you will find Rigoletto – A slice of old fashioned Italy. We received the warmest of welcomes from Proprietor Giorgio Delli-Compagni who showed us to our table and served us for the entire evening. Oh my is the food good...! I was advised that the bresaola with a home made fig syrup was the starter to choose, and it was well advised! Sticky sweet fig syrup was poured with a flourish liberally over the tender slices of mozzarella and bresaola. Not to be outdone, my husband Marcus chose the grilled sardines, simple, honest food – You can’t go wrong. For mains, Marcus went for the veal in a lemon butter as a main course, a controversial choice for many but he said it really was sumptuous. My choice of slow cooked pork wrapped in spec ham with a Morello cherry sauce was equally worthy of good comments. Again, simple ingredients but used expertly and too many to befuddle and confuse the palate; just a “lick the plate clean” course and a hope that you have enough room for the dessert trolley… Yes, trolley! A vast array of beautifully heart-clogging, deliciously blood-clotting, and magnificently weight-gaining deserts to choose from. I went for a passion fruit panna cotta with delicate slices of oranges in syrup and it was truly mouth watering. It melted in your mouth and was hands down the most delicious panna cotta I have ever tried. I told this to Giorgio and he wasn’t surprised… He made it, you see! Giorgio wanted to show me that he could also make the best zabaglione right here at the table, but unfortunately I’ll have to wait for that show until the next time I venture into this little slice of Italy... Perhaps after I’ve dieted for a few days beforehand!
    Read full review here
    Reviewed on
    2017-11-02 12:10:08
  • Aston Pottery Country Cafe

    There was good reason for the Café at Aston Pottery to win the coveted award of Best Café at the Oxfordshire Restaurant Awards for two years in a row. Anna Gregory the Café Manager is proud to say that they offer a wide selection of homemade fare from local suppliers – and that is exactly what they do! We tasted seasonally filled Poacher’s Roll, with sausage meat, cranberry, rosemary and stilton at £6.95 and the delicious Leek and Stilton Quiche £8.95 followed by Chocolate Cake (£2.75) and Cranberry & Pistachio Cake (£3.00) all made for comforting autumnal food, preparing us for the coming season of cold and damp. However the view from the Café should also inspire the most reticent of gardeners as the displays in the gardens were so fantastic that we just had to take a turn amongst the high coloured borders in order to salve our conscience for having finished our lunch with a tasting from the array of cakes of offer. Obviously a winning formula which Jane and Stephen Baughan are justifiably proud of even as they continue to develop the business, expand the offering and find new passions and interests to add to the package.
    Read full review here
    Reviewed on
    2017-11-02 12:08:12
  • Ashmolean Dining Room

    JAZZ-MOLEAN “The Ashmolean is the University of Oxford’s museum of art and archaeology, founded in 1683.” Fast forward over 300 years, and it’s somewhat fitting that art is still being practised here, live every Thursday, in the form of The Ashmolean’s jazz evenings. Coming in off St.Giles, you take the lift to the Rooftop Terrace Restaurant, and instantly, Oxford is laid out before you, like a jewelled carpet gently glowing against the nightime sky. By day, this is a bustling venue full of museum-goers, but by night, it takes on a cooler, more intimate vibe, as the bright lights are turned down and the mood lighting is turned up.  It’s so easy to get carried away by the music and the venue, but the food is arguably the main event here. In keeping with the atmosphere, I’d categorise the food as ’sophisticated yet understated’ - everything is done exceptionally well, but with a minimum of fuss and none of that ‘blowing your own trumpet’ stuff (if you’ll forgive the jazz pun). After filling ourselves with the most delicious of foods, the jazz drew to a close around 9pm and the restaurant slowly started to empty. We lingered a while over our carafe of white wine, gazing out of the rooftop windows. The words of the poet Phillip Larkin came to mind, a music aficionado himself, who wrote about jazz….”On me your voice falls as they say love should, Like an enormous yes”. It seemed somehow appropriate.
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    Reviewed on
    2017-11-02 12:05:47
  • Oxford Castle Unlocked

    Normally for us, Sundays are a day of homework and chores, but last Sunday for a change, we had a family ticket for the Oxford Castle Unlocked. So, my husband and I, and our 10 year old daughter and her friend Isabella all traipsed off and spent a fascinating hour or so in Oxford Castle. It was great travelling through Oxford on the top of the Park and Ride bus seeing sights I don’t normally see when I’m commuting in on the same buses for work, as I never go upstairs. But children are fascinated by the bus top floor, so up we went. It gave me an opportunity to see Oxford as I don’t very often see it, on a lovely sunny Sunday morning. And also to see the runners and volunteers for the Oxford Half Marathon which was taking place that day. We were booked on the 12.20 pm tour of the Castle, and when we were arrived it was confirmed the tour would start at 12.30. Not a problem, as it gave us the opportunity to look around the museum shop. At 12.30 prompt, the locked iron door to St George’s Tower was opened by ‘Roland Jenks’, our guide, and a group of about 20 were ushered into the base of the tower to start our tour. Roland was a prisoner in Oxford Castle during the reign of Elizabeth I, who proceeded to tell us that he had been imprisoned for is allegiances to the Pope, and that he had a “foul and saucy mouth” and was sentenced to lose his ears! We climbed the 101 stone steps to the top of the tower and admired the wonderful views from the top. Coming back down, we entered St George’s Crypt, and the girls commented that it smelt. Roland heard them and commented with a laugh that it “smells of history”! He’s right of course. We heard about, and saw the history right through from medieval days until 1996, when the prison was decommissioned. We heard about Mary Blandy, the Black Panther, and all sorts of gruesome history. Roland was a brilliant guide, injecting just the right amount of information and humour. We all thoroughly enjoyed our visit, and would have stayed longer, to climb the Castle Mound, but due to commitments couldn’t. We did manage to grab some lovely fresh sandwiches from the Castleyard Café however. All in all, well worth a visit, and definitely not just for tourists! Cost of a family ticket £35 Adult £10.95 Child £7.75 Senior citizens £9.25 Student £9.25
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    Reviewed on
    2017-11-02 11:49:38
  • BOBBI BROWN COSMETICS

    Bobbi Brown Cosmetics unveils NEW Studio in Oxford Bobbi Brown Cosmetics are offering an immersive and personalised shopping experience for consumers at the heart of Oxford’s new retail centre, Westgate. Built with brides-to-be in mind, the store is taking its bridal services to the next level and brings experience to life with this new opening. The new opening will offer the perfect way to discover a wide range of colour cosmetics, brushes, skincare, and expert services. Customers will be able to encounter a range of knowledge and experiences, be it through the exchange of tips and ideas at the artistry table, informative videos of seasonal inspirations and how-to’s, or from the expansive specialist services. Specific to the Oxford store, customers will be provided with the chance to discover their best-suited foundation with an area dedicated to all foundation offerings in varying textures, finishes and shades. “We are excited to open Bobbi Brown Cosmetics in the new Westgate Oxford, which is set to become the town’s shopping destination. Oxford is a town filled with dynamic women and students, who we know will fall in love with the Bobbi Brown range of high-quality, cult beauty products,” said Quita Davis, VP & General Manager, Bobbi Brown Cosmetics. The Design Bobbi Brown Cosmetics’ clean and modern aesthetic is reflected in architectural details like industrial steel cabinetry and Carrara marble, while an abundance of natural light make for the perfect beauty ambiance. At the heart and center of the space is a communal artistry table, which creates a warm and welcoming environment to try products at their own leisure, or if preferred, with the help of a makeup artist. Private Makeup Area Part makeup studio, part learning centre. This space is ideal for customers who want a more intimate setting for their one-on-one makeup lessons or bridal makeup trial. It can also be used for small events and private makeup parties. Complete with a Brow Chair, the Makeup Room is perfect for anyone wanting to experience the recently launched Brow Service in private. The service incorporates all you need to create your ideal brow shape, with products that cater for a multitude of brow finishes. The Brow Shape service can be booked for RRP: £17.00, redeemable against products on the day of the service. The Services Bobbi Brown Cosmetics offers personalised and complimentary makeup services designed to empower women with the tools, knowledge and confidence they need to become their own makeup artists and skincare experts. Bridal makeup services will also be available.
    Read full review here
    Reviewed on
    2017-11-02 11:46:32
  • Smashbox Cosmetics

    Smashbox Cosmetics opens its doors in Westgate! Launching in all its glory on Tuesday 24th October, Smashbox Cosmetics will be offering customers the opportunity to immerse themselves in the world of Smashbox Cosmetics with a new stand-alone UK store in Westgate, Oxford. The brand will be bringing to life the full photographic heritage and L.A. vibe that inspires the studio and product line every day from its spiritual home, California. With eventing at the centre of the Store, Smashbox Cosmetics will have all the tips and tricks for camera ready looks in a snap, including a comprehensive menu of exclusive events and masterclasses. A ring-flash selfie booth will help to capture the perfect light on your phone for the ultimate Smashbox selfie to showcase your latest look on social media and with friends. Led by dedicated Smashbox Crew, complimentary Studio Services on offer every day include: FLAWLESS IN A FLASH (15 MIN, FREE) Get a complimentary touch-up & expert help choosing products that take your look to the next level. FOR YOUR EYES ONLY (30 MIN, £20*) Choose the eye makeup look you want to master. We’ll apply & teach you the secrets for your eye shape. CAMERA-READY SKIN (30 MIN, £20*) Get matched to your ideal primer, foundation shade, concealer & powder, all applied by a pro. Includes contour & highlighting for you face shape. GOING OUT TONIGHT (30 MIN, £20*) Treat yourself! Our pros will get you ready fast and enhance you favourite features including eyes, lips and cheeks. GOING ALL OUT TONIGHT (60 MIN, £30*) Get high-drama makeup application including fierce eyes, defined lips, contoured cheeks & more. *All service payments are redeemable against product. As well as these bookable services, the brand will be hosting pop-up events and activities including guest artists on site, spotlight events, studio masterclasses and special appearances from brand friends, ongoing.
    Read full review here
    Reviewed on
    2017-10-23 12:00:34
  • The Anchor

    It was my first visit to the Anchor and was surprised to find this charming gastropub nestled within the leafy Jericho suburb away from hustle and bustle of Walton St. There was even parking - unheard of! A light-filled spacious interior with contemporary, clean design. Local village pub meets modern dining. Whether you fancy a pint and a snack after a walk along the Oxford canal or a hearty meal with family or friends, The Anchor is a lovely little spot to try. With a charming patio terrace for al fresco dining in Summer or an indoor open-fire for all the cosiness in Winter - there are even 2 private dining rooms if you’re looking for a more intimate gathering.   After receiving complimentary bread and butter and placed an order for our drinks with the attentive staff, we took in the fabulously varied seasonal menu and specials board. They was a wide choice and I’ve no doubt Vegetarians will be pleased that they also have a good quantity of options. I opted for a bar snack starter of the warm haggis scotch egg (£6) which had a lovely crunchy coating and depth of flavour. My partner chose the lovely light crispy squid with a rich chilli jam (£6). For mains I opted for the fish pie with tenderstem broccoli and chard (£11) from the specials board and my partner the lamb rump with couscous, broccoli, aubergine and mint yoghurt (£18). The fish pie was wholesome and hearty, with generous chunks of fish and perfectly seasoned veg. The lamb course was perfectly balanced with good, honest portion sizes all round. We shared some deliciously crispy sweet courgette fritters which complemented the tangy fennel yoghurt dip (£4).. The highlight for us were the desserts. My partner chose the delectably rich chocolate delice, which came with popcorn, salted caramel and simply the best homemade banana ice cream (£7). I was really happy with my choice of set lemon custard, raspberries and honeycomb (£6) a lovely balance of sweet & sour flavours and beautifully plated - an artwork of autumnal colours!
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    Reviewed on
    2017-09-26 13:16:37
  • Turtle Bay

    With mellow reggae music playing in the background and 2-for-1 happy hour cocktails distinctly to the foreground as the drinkers chattered happily around a central beach-style cabana bar, it was hard not to be instantly transported to a sunny Caribbean shore. Which was lucky as we were off on holiday to Ireland the next day, so our sunshine drinks could start early! Over a potent Long Island Iced Tea, the barmaid admitted that Turtle Bay wasn’t the easiest place to find, tucked down Friars Passage, a narrow little side street. But what a little gem once you do know where it is; bang in the centre of Oxford, a stone’s throw from the Ashmolean! You can grab a menu from the hooks around the bar and start perusing the extensive list early. With a bit of advice as to the staff favourites, we sorted ourselves out quickly; fishy starters - fiery garlic & chilli pit prawns and panko-coated whitebait - were followed by meaty mains - jerk rump of lamb and one pot curry - and delectable desserts - rum & raisin bread & butter pudding and caramelised pineapple. But let’s finish where we started, with the drinks, anytime you enter a restaurant which has its very own beer – ‘Turtle Bay Jamaican Pale ale, brewed for Island Life’ - you know you’re onto a winner. At last - Island Life comes to Oxford City Centre!
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    Reviewed on
    2017-09-26 13:01:20
  • Angels

    Angels is a little gem, a perfect - and angelic - haven to while away the hours in style on a cold, wet evening. This cosy retreat has flickering candles on the bar, black and white prints of Hollywood legends on the walls and smooth music playing, creating the kind of ambience that makes you want to linger. The extensive and innovative cocktail menu at Angels, which features stories behind each concoction as well as its ingredients, includes classics such as margaritas and mojitos as well as elegant vintage cocktails inspired by favourites of the 19th and 20th centuries, such as the Vesper, the original James Bond ‘shaken, not stirred’ martini, of which James himself said, ‘Once you’ve tasted it, it’s all you want to drink’. Also on offer unique cocktails created by the expert bartenders at Angels that are not available anywhere else – I recommend the Passionate Champagne (a signature Angels favourite), featuring fresh passion fruit and Chambord liqueur topped up with fizz. On the appropriately-named ‘Heavenly’ list is the Grasshopper, an indulgent cocktail with crème de menthe, crème de cacao and cream. If you’re not drinking alcohol, that’s no problem either – there are some fantastic mocktails too. What’s more, if there’s something else you’d like, or you’d like some inspiration for a bespoke cocktail, just ask the lovely Dominika, who can concoct anything you like – and it will always be spectacular. The cocktails look as good as they taste too: Instagram-worthy, they are garnished with fruit, cream, chocolate and even toasted marshmallows. They are also very reasonably priced – just £4.95 at ‘Heavenly Hour’ between 4.30pm and 9pm – and you can overindulge as must as you like, as Angels can even organise your taxi home. I’ll definitely be back.
    Read full review here
    Reviewed on
    2017-09-26 12:51:18
  • The Baskerville

    I love a Sunday lunch, and the Sunday lunch at The Baskerville, in Shiplake, between Henley and Reading, is no exception. We had a really warm welcome from all of the staff at this family run and family friendly restaurant / gastro pub. The Sunday lunch menu had something for all palates, from soup to scallops to start, and from traditional roasts and fish and chips to swordfish for main courses as well as delicious desserts (all made from scratch in house). I had scallops to start, which were served with pancetta, black pudding, pea shoots and pea puree. They were done beautifully. My husband chose the caprese salad, which he polished off in the blink of an eye. Isobel, our daughter, also plumped for scallops and loved every bite. I am a big fan of pink beef and my roast dinner was done to perfection! If you prefer your meat cooked more thoroughly, or even less so, the brilliant chefs at The Baskerville will get it spot on for you. The roast dinner in its entirety was fantastic, with juicy vegetables, magnificent Yorkshire puddings and rich gravy. John went for fish and chips, served with crushed minted peas and homemade tartare sauce, and the chips were triple-cooked making them light and crispy. Isobel went for the smoked loin of pork, an interesting play on the standard roast dinner and it worked marvellously. The mains were huge hits all around. For dessert I had a fine peach tart which was light and delicious and John had a basil and rosemary parfait. The parfait was subtle and unique, and thoroughly enjoyed. The small person went for a large portion of New York cheesecake and was far, far from disappointed. We really enjoyed our lunch time visit, and will come back soon to try the other great options on the menu!
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    Reviewed on
    2017-09-26 12:45:39
  • Cherwell Boathouse

    I’ve not been to The Cherwell Boathouse for a couple of years, so was really looking forward to my visit this time. The menu was still the ‘late summer menu’, and our visit on a cold, drab, rainy Sunday evening was still delightful. The welcome we had from Brice was very warm and welcoming, and he clearly knew his menu and wine list thoroughly. The restaurant was reasonably busy for a Sunday evening, and we had a lovely table by the window to the terrace, where we could watch some intrepid punters in the rain, as well as a family of swans swimming up and down the Cherwell. Idyllic! To start I had pan fried quail breast served with bubble and squeak and caramelised baby onions. It was delicious. My husband had ham terrine and our 10 year old seafood lover chose pan seared scallops served with puy lentils, smoked bacon and butternut squash puree, which went down an absolute treat! I tasted all 3 dishes, and can confirm they were all lovely. For main course, I realised in hindsight I chose something fairly similar to my starter, but nonetheless it was a good choice; roasted guinea fowl with dauphinoise potatoes. It was cooked beautifully. John fancied trying the nut roast, and the seafood loving 10 year old went for pan fried trout fillet with white bean and mussels chowder. Again both dishes were polished off, and Isobel’s fish dish was voted the favourite by all three of us. In the French manner, Brice asked if we wanted cheese before desert. As the only cheese eater, I asked for a taster, and was presented with some beautifully kept Lincolnshire poacher and Cherwell goats cheese. The small person tried both but her love of seafood doesn’t extend to any cheese other than cheddar. But her loss was my gain. For dessert, I went for strawberry mille-feuille with champagne sorbet. It was very light and fresh and a lovely end to an autumnal meal. John, who has the sweetest tooth, went for peanut and pistachio salted caramel ice cream which he thoroughly enjoyed. Isobel chose Breton Shortbread, which was not at all what we were expecting, but was a delicious shortbread cake filled with raspberry sorbet. There was certainly no dessert left! We had a lovely evening and can heartily recommend the Cherwell Boathouse.
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    2017-09-26 12:42:13
  • The Oxford Kitchen

    Oxford has never been over-endowed with ‘fine dining‘ restaurants. The saying goes that people spend their money in Oxford on education and houses but less so on high-end eating and retail. However, tucked into the south end of Summertown, The Oxford Kitchen is striding out with its own modern take on fine dining and letting its food do the talking. Based on our experience it certainly has the wind in its sails. We were quickly relaxed by the kind of attention you imagine the Queen gets on foreign state visits - charming, punctual, friendly. We made the joke that we were getting ‘American service’ (the waiter was American, you can see how sharp we are) and by that we mean a superior level of restaurant service that you find in the US. The menu is progressive and complex with ingredients we had not heard of (yuzus anyone?). Each dish comes with a variety of flavours, for example the burrata (buffalo mozzarella) was delicious, topped with razor thin shavings of black truffle, small pieces of artichoke and a subtle lemon puree. The Cornish crab salad was so good that my wife ate it in under a minute. Dressed with a lemon verbena mayonnaise, the crab was the best thing we tasted all night. Bravo. For mains we had the lamb and the beef, which means a few small but perfectly formed cuts of meat surrounded by care, love and the intricate presentation of the supporting elements. The steak was indeed that ‘melt in the mouth’ experience you read (dream?) about. You can tell from the menu that flair and creativity lives here. It seems to work - The restaurant did 60 covers and the chef said wisely, ‘It’s been a busy old evening’. And a very good one too.
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    2017-09-26 12:35:23
  • Daba

    Whenever I’m asked to do a review for the magazine I always ask myself ‘why’ I’d visit. What makes this place special? Well I was about to find out as I walked into Daba to meet the owner, Raj. Raj is an incredibly welcoming and warm person, something his team clearly mirrors. The menu is well rounded, definitely something for everyone with a number of dishes only found at Daba and a few of the expected staples of an indian restaurant. The restaurant was warm, very comfortable with a number of diners already enjoying the meal. It wasn’t long for my starters, Paneer Tikka, to be delivered to my table. An excellent way to start a meal, firm and delicious indian cheese, something I’d highly recommend. Next up were my mains, DaBa Daal, DaBa Special Chicken Sizzler, Amritsari Machli, Pilau rice and a Plain Naan. Every dish was incredible, not a disappointing bite to be found. The Amritsari Machli was packed full of flavour, addictively so. I usually have a Tarka Dhal to go along with my typical indian meal. But this is Daba, a true upgrade to what I’ve had before the Daba Daal. Again, packed full of flavour and amazing alongside the my Chicken Sizzler. I came to learn the reason I’d return is for Daba’s commitment to deliver true, authentic flavours and dishes. This is something I’ve yet to find in Oxfordshire. Don’t get me wrong, Indian restaurants in Oxford are fantastic. But Daba is the only restaurant I’ve visited that has introduced me to something new, refreshing and definitely worthy of many repeated visits.
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    2017-09-26 12:18:11
  • The Crown

    Woodstock. The name conjures up various images depending upon your age, nationality, and musical tastes. However, for this particular honey-stoned corner of Oxfordshire, think of an eclectic mix of traditional British meaty fare with a Spanish seafood twist. Oh, and the cocktails...don’t forget the cocktails! In the Summer, the courtyard terrace is packed with aficionados of the shaken drink, but as it was distinctly Autumnal we stayed within the calming pea-blue painted restaurant and sampled The Crown’s most popular cocktail - a Raging Bison (vodka & vanilla schnapps). We kicked off with Spanish seafood - crispy squid and wood-roasted gambas, which were both delicious. My dinner companion, Big Dave, who pronounces himself a fan of the ‘hot stuff’, then plumped for the fiery pizza special for his main course. The Crown boasts a traditional Italian clay pizza oven, wood-fired as demanded by the purists (harder to cook on than gas but more flexible in skilled hands). One carafe of water later, Big Dave pronounced himself well satisfied. The Spanish theme continued through dessert - Mallorcan almond cake and crema catelana both followed, the latter being the stand-out dish - a cinnamon-infused more delicate version of a crème brûlée. Should you wish to truly indulge in the Mediterranean delights of The Crown, there is a Spanish-themed evening every Thursday, with live music, tapas, and (I’m informed) a huge paella cooked in the conservatory. Hasta la vista....I’ll be back! The Crown isn’t just a wonderful restaurant however, they can also boast being a grade 2 listed 18th century boutique hotel B&B with 5 en-suite bedrooms with free wi-fi, bose sound docks, and luxury toiletries. If you’re visiting Woodstock, don’t miss a trip to or a stay at The Crown!
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    2017-09-26 11:56:19
  • Woodstock Opticians

    Woodstock Opticians has a lovely welcoming feel, the décor is a combination of tradition and contemporary and made me feel at ease immediately. On entering the Practice, I was warmly welcomed by Kate and introduced to Optometrist and Company Director Karen Davies. Karen and her team have decades of experience between them and have recently open a second Practice Stow Opticians in Stow on the Wold. Karen showed me into the consulting room and discussed my general health and wellbeing together with my work and leisure activities before starting my eye examination. The first part of my eye examination was the refraction test where Karen checked distance vision for driving and TV and my near vision for reading and computer work. Karen then tested my oculomotor balance and pupil reflexes which checked that my eye muscles work together and that the correct amount of light was reaching the retina at the back of my eye. The intraocular pressure test came next which tests the pressure inside your eyes. I was delighted that this didn’t involve a ‘puff of air’ into my eyes. Woodstock Opticians have invested in state of the art technology to ensure their customers have more enhanced examinations and pleasant experience. Karen moved on to test my all-round vision which may detect glaucoma and other neurological visual field defects. A light was then shone into through my pupils into my eyes which enabled Karen to see my lens, retina and optic nerve clearly. She took a digital image of the central retina as well as an ultra-wide digital image using the new Optomap technology. When my eye examination was over Karen discussed her findings, which revealed that my prescription had changed slightly. As I wear a combination of glasses and contact lenses Karen made me fully aware of my options including multifocal contact lenses and glasses versus standard contact lenses and glasses. My experience at Woodstock Opticians was fantastic, the care and level of service was second to none. I’m looking forward to returning next week to see Helen Buick one of the Dispensing Opticians at the Practice who will assist me in choosing my frames and to ensure the correct lenses for me.
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    2017-09-26 11:43:10
  • Hampers Food and Wine Cafe

    One of the main things I love about Hampers is that when passing, it always looks like a pleasant place to eat; so when I walked in I couldn’t help but browse over what the extensive and varied delicatessen counter had to offer. I was welcomed with a friendly smile by Elizabeth, who was more than happy to help. Although spoilt for choice after looking through the extensive menu, I turned to the specials boards for further inspiration. After much deliberation I opted for the healthier Caesar salad option, accompanied by an Americano coffee. My salad arrived quickly, delivered by a very helpful and friendly waitress called Karen. I normally steer away from salads but this definitely caught my attention: safe to say I was very happy with my choice, even the anchovies - which I can be fussy about - I loved. Then the choice of delicious looking desserts was just too much to decline. I went for a firm favourite; the Chocolate Brownie. The crumbly top and warm gooey middle hit the spot for that naughty treat I needed to get me through the rest of the day. Hampers is a wonderful place that compliments all that Woodstock has to offer and is ideal for that special something from the deli, a quick baguette or to have a relaxing lunch with family and friends.
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    2017-09-26 11:28:51
  • Qumins

    We were invited in to a relaxing atmosphere by professional, cheery staff. After taking our seats we were presented with poppadoms and a delightful pickle tray. With menus in hand and drinks on order we found that Qumins sported some excellent additions to a typical Indian menu. We both decided on Onion Bhajis and, after being recommended by restaurant owner Ali Azam, a Koliji Puri to start. For main we ordered a Chicken Korma, Lamb Bhuna, Special Rice, Pilau Rice, Tadka Dahl and a Peshwari Naan. Our starters arrived promptly which was excellent as we hadn’t eaten all day. The Koliji Puri is something special and I can see why it’s one of Qumins most popular dishes; truly incredible. By this point my friend and I were thoroughly impressed, and we hadn’t even ventured onto our main course. Each dish was cooked to perfection, presented incredibly and tasted so fresh and full of flavour. The Peshwari Naan was nice and light and the Lamb was impeccable. It’s really not often that I’m blown away by a meal out, but Qumins definitely succeeded.
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    Reviewed on
    2017-08-21 13:22:25
  • Pierre Victoire

    Escaping the rainy streets of Oxford into the cosy interior of Pierre Victoire, my dining partner and I were suddenly transported into a quaint Parisian bistro - assisted by the lyrical French accents from the staff. Warmly welcomed by Alicja, we were shown to our candlelit table where we soaked up the intimate atmosphere and rustic furnishings. Despite it being relatively early on a Monday evening the place was buzzing - a great indicator that we were in the right spot for dinner. We were swiftly furnished with menus and some sliced baguette with butter. My dining partner and I were determined to do the menu justice, so passed up the fantastically affordable fixed price dinner option (3 courses for £25) and instead perused the a la carte offering. A great selection with beautiful ingredients made for a tough decision! But we couldn’t pass up on PV’s signature dishes, Moules Marinières à la Crème (£6.90) and Escargots (£7.90) - an intrepid French first for both of us! Our caution was unwarranted however as this delicacy was delicious, generously dressed in garlic, parsley and Pernod butter. The mussels were quite simply the best I’ve ever eaten. So velvety rich and a really generous portion - we both enjoyed mopping up the remaining sauce with our leftover bread. For mains my partner went for the superb Filet de Boeuf (£23 .90) cooked to a pink perfection, served with parmentier potatoes char-grilled tomatoes, sautéed mushrooms and Béarnaise sauce. I chose the Queue de Lotte au Risotto de Crabe (£15.50) lovely, meaty yet delicate monkfish tail baked in salty jambon de Bayonne and served on a creamy crab risotto. Our waiter Gabi encouraged us to try a side dish too so we went for the Wild Rocket, Watercress & Parmesan salad which had a delicious balsamic dressing (£2.95) and enjoyed a bottle of the house red between us (£15.50.) Despite feeling fully satisfied we deduced it would be improper not to finish our perfect meal without a dessert - so we chose two favourites, a Vanilla Crème Brûlée and easily the star of the show, the Tarte Tatin (both £5.75.) Satiated and fit to burst, we left with huge smiles on our faces and promises to return. 5 Things We Liked: ✓ The quality of the cooking ✓ The Mussels! ✓ The menu selection - everything sounded delicious! ✓ The friendliness of the staff ✓ The atmosphere
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    2017-08-21 13:14:04
  • Excel Dry Cleaners

    We’ve been using Excel for years. Previous owner, John Warburton, was always engaging and courteous, providing a service second to none. And now Rachel Boyes, who took over the business eight years ago has taken over from where John left off having joined the business in Summertown twenty two years ago. Rachel is a hard worker in a physically demanding business. The end product may well be perfectly ironed shirts, reinvigorated curtains or a revitalised dress, but the truth is that the process is as it has always been…..hard work in very hot conditions. Rachel is someone who, from personal experience, clearly cares about the service she provides her clients. She’s a hard worker, artisan like, demanding the best of herself and her dedicated team. “It’s a physically demanding job and it’s not for everyone. My team are wonderful and I simply couldn’t do it without them. All of the team have been trained on the job and I have even been asked before to go in and train other staff at client premises where they installed some new laundry equipment and they wanted me to go and do the training for them. I’m more than happy to go out and train housekeepers and clients with requirements that I can help with. With clients ranging from students to young professionals, local hotels to uniforms for some of the leading businesses in the county, it’s not difficult to see why so many people put their trust in Excel. “I sometimes wonder where they all come from. We have people bringing in 16 shirts at a time, curtains, suits, wedding dresses, you name it we clean it! “We’ve built up an excellent reputation as we have been here so long. There are lots of familiar faces coming in to the shop every day and it’s really nice to see so many loyal customers coming back, time and again.” Excel has attracted some fabulous corporate clients, including the likes of Blenheim Palace and leading Oxfordshire hotels, adds Rachel. “It’s great to pick up some excellent accounts and certainly helps the business to grow.”
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    2017-08-21 12:30:56
  • Cockadoo

    This was our first visit to Cockadoo, but it won’t be our last. There is an immense menu, covering all the usual favourites from Chinese, Thai, Japanese and Mongolian cuisines. My husband and I were with our 10 year old daughter, and we all found plenty to appeal to our taste buds. I went for a lamb Massaman curry and jasmine rice for my main, which was beautifully subtle and creamy. John had Grilled Ostrich in Japanese BBQ Soya sauce, and Isobel went for Sirloin Beef with fresh mango and mango sauce. The beef, cooked pink, was beautifully tender and tasted amazing. We were pleasantly surprised to see a wonderful selection of Movenpick ice creams and sorbets and other light desserts on the menu. We tried the brownies (lovely and gooey) and the mango and cream ice cream, which finished off the meal perfectly. Cockadoo also do regular themed nights with tribute acts as diverse as Lionel Ritchie and Wham to Elvis and Abba coming up on their programme, and having eaten there and sampled the plush decor, I really fancy one of those!
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    2017-08-17 11:19:17
  • The Maytime Inn

    The Maytime Inn is a charming, traditional 17th century Cotswold pub, restaurant and hotel, sympathetically modernised, with clean, cool colours in its welcoming bar. The restaurant is composed of several interlinking areas leading off the bar, with a room where larger parties could be seated. There is an attractive garden and outdoor seating area, and dogs are welcomed. The menu is modern British, seasonal and locally sourced, with a delicious variety of choices, including the Sharing Fish Platter, which makes a great starter for two, or a tasty light lunch. Vegetarians are also well catered-for, and the presentation of all the dishes is exceptional. There is a wide range of good wines at reasonable prices, with an astonishing choice of gins to choose from, more than 100! A warm welcome is received from Andrew and Dominic, and the ambiance is relaxed and enjoyable. Locals still use the bar ensuring a pleasant mix of diners and drinkers. There is a large car park, and the location is in Asthall, only five minutes from the A40.
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    2017-08-17 11:11:45
  • The White Horse, Kings Sutton

    A warm and friendly welcome awaits you at this traditional stone village pub. The pub, which has been refurbished over the last 4 years by Julie and Hendrik has a great atmosphere, welcoming locals and visitors alike, along with a jar of dog biscuits for any four legged friends that might pop in! The décor is modern and stylish but still retains the cosy, relaxed feel of a village pub. The front of house staff were very attentive without being intrusive. The meal itself was superb, starting with a complimentary appetizer of whitebait and dip, alongside white and brown bread. We plumped for the White Horse version of a Waldorf salad, with the most divine Oxford Blue Cheese and a wild mushroom omelette served in its own cast iron pan which meant it stayed nice and hot. The pork dish was immense, consisting of pork fillet, belly pork, a pork cheek hash brown and crackling. Every mouthful was delicious and was complimented by a side dish of hispi cabbage (recommended by our waitress). The beef fillet melted in the mouth and the beef dripping chips were the stuff of dreams, fluffy on the inside, crispy on the outside. Moving onto desserts, we sampled the Banana Sticky Toffee Pudding and the Chocolate Tart with Salted Caramel Ice Cream. An excellent sticky toffee pudding and enough toffee sauce to satisfy even the sweetest of tooth! The salted caramel ice cream was smooth and creamy with just the right amount of salted caramel not to be overpowering. We finished off our evening where we started, back in the garden overlooking the village square and church enjoying a coffee and a scrumptious Strawberry Caipirinha from the cocktail list. This is definitely one for a return visit and we’ve already recommended it to many of our friends!
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    2017-08-17 11:05:35
  • The Vaults & Garden Café

    Walking into The Vaults you know you’ve discovered something special with it’s beautiful architecture in the very heart of Oxford. I chose the full Oxford English Breakfast while my friend went for scrambled eggs on toast. We both ordered tea and decided, as it was a beautiful day, to sit outside in the shade of the Radcliffe Camera. The scrambled eggs were incredible, sat on delicious sourdough toast. My Oxford English Breakfast really hit the spot with some excellent sausages. Everything we ate was organic and cooked to perfection. The Vaults is a must visit place for tourists and locals. Excellent food and drink from helpful, friendly and experienced staff.
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    2017-08-17 10:57:43
  • The Oxford Artisan Distillery (TOAD)

    Oxford’s first and only distillery is now open for business – offering visitor tours and sales of its spirits at Old Depot, South Parks, Oxford. The Oxford Artisan Distillery (TOAD) is one of very few distilleries in the UK to produce a range of spirits from grain to glass, making it a very rare, true craft distiller with the highest standards in total provenance. Its main ingredients are unique populations of ancient heritage grain - all grown and harvested in fields close to Oxford. Not just organic, they are grown with sustainable farming methods, once common in medieval England, which replenish the soil and support wildlife. Worldwide, these populations of grain are only found in Oxfordshire – and are grown exclusively for TOAD. Some of TOAD’s botanicals are hand-picked from The University of Oxford’s Botanic Garden – the oldest garden of its kind in the country and the inspiration behind many of the distiller’s recipes. The magnificent copper stills, Nautilus and Nemo, were designed by TOAD and hand-built by the engineers at South Devon Railways, the team who re-built the famous steam engine, The Flying Scotsman. Visitor Tours Visitors are now able to book tours of the distillery either directly or through Experience Oxfordshire’s Visitor Information Centre in Broad St or online at http://www.experienceoxfordshire.org/venue/oxford-artisan-distillery/ Standard tours cost £20 and last about 45 minutes. Visitors can arrange to be picked up in TOAD’s own shuttle bus from the centre of Oxford – and returned after sampling its spirits and learning what makes TOAD a true craft distiller. Spirits for Sale TOAD’s first products are Oxford Dry Gin (46% abv, £39.50 per 70cl bottle) and Oxford Rye Vodka (40% abv, £34.95 per 70 cl bottle), both available to buy at the distillery or online at https://www.spiritoftoad.com/spirits. The first gin ever to have been produced in Oxford, TOAD’s Oxford Dry Gin is described as a classic, juniper and citrus gin, true to the authentic gins of old. The City’s first vodka, TOAD’s Oxford Rye Vodka is a pure, smooth spirit with a clean aftertaste of spice – the result of its pure rye grain spirit, distilled on site. The distillery is open to purchase spirits 11.00-15.00 Monday to Saturday and 14.00-16.00 on Sundays.
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    2017-08-17 10:47:33
  • The Manor Country House Hotel

    On arrival to The Manor with my friend Annette (a seasoned foodie) I was taken aback by this beautiful 11th century building, it was breath taking. Set in 12 acres of stunning countryside it really is one of Oxfordshire’s Best Kept Secrets. We chose to dine in the Barons Hall, the room was amazing and the Tudor oak-panelling lended itself perfectly to our special evening. With a 2AA Rosette status we knew we were in a for a gastronomic treat and certainly wasn’t disappointed. Annette chose the Raw Sweet Potato Noodles as her starter, I couldn’t resist the Tuna Caraccio, it was delicious and presented beautifully... For the main course I relished the Pan Seared Sea Trout served with courgette, vanilla mash, peach and broad beans, it was utterly delicious and the vegetables cooked to perfection. Annette chose the Saffron Poached Lemon sole and declared it was the best she’d ever had. Our delightful waitress Joan gave us time before presenting the desert menu. She recommended the Raw Cocoa Torte which arrived with a raspberry, coconut, peach and vanilla sorbet. It was incredible and a fabulous way to end our meal. I certainly won’t be a stranger to The Manor and am looking forward to popping in for lunch very soon.
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    2017-08-17 10:39:08
  • Christ Church Picture Gallery

    Christ Church is unique among the Oxford and Cambridge colleges in possessing an important collection of Old Master paintings and drawings. In 1765 General John Guise, a soldier and art collector, bequeathed his collection of over 200 paintings and almost 2000 drawings to his former college. This extraordinary gift enabled Christ Church to introduce art into Oxford education without the necessity to travel to Italy or to gain access to stately homes (which held the majority of art collections in the country). At that time the Christ Church Picture Gallery collection was unequalled by any other Oxford institution. The Bodleian ‘Picture Gallery’ housed mainly portraits and the Ashmolean Museum, the oldest museum in Britain, had a large and interesting collection of artifacts and objects, but few paintings. The collection is strongest in Italian art from the 14th to the 18th century. Later works include paintings by highly-acclaimed artists such as Filippino Lippi, Tintoretto, Veronese, Annibale Carracci, and Salvator Rosa. There are also some remarkable works by northern painters such as Anthony van Dyck, Frans Hals, and Hugo van der Goes. The internationally renowned drawings collection is regarded as one of the most important private collections of Old Master drawings in the country and includes work by Leonardo, Michelangelo, Dürer, Raphael and Rubens. For reasons of conservation the entire collection cannot be permanently on show but a selection of drawings is always on view. These small in-house exhibitions are changed about every three months to enable the public to see a varied selection from this part of the collection. Currently on view is Scraps of Laughter (31 May – 11 September 2017) offering a glimpse into the beginning of caricature and satire in Italy and how it was taken up and thrived in Britain. In late 2017 we will feature Drawing in Rome (16 September – 22 December 2017) and Art and the Reformation (11 October – 22 December 2017). Please see our website for events and exhibition information, and do stop by and visit soon!
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    2017-08-12 14:45:34
  • University of Oxford Shop

    The University of Oxford Shop is ideally located on the High Street, in the heart of the Dreaming Spires of Oxford. Established in 1990, the shop is the University’s official retail store, specialising in a wide range of clothing and gifts featuring the University of Oxford crest. Situated opposite Brasenose College and St Mary’s Church on the High Street, the double fronted façade of the University of Oxford shop showcases colourful window displays, which entice you inside. The welcoming shop interior is wood panelled similar to that found in many colleges. The helpful staff are always on hand to give product advice or find the right size. The front of the shop features the popular University and College gift ranges including stationery and tableware, enamel cufflinks and lapel pins; the latter making perfect gifts for those who have a favourite college and wish to show their allegiance or connection to it. The clothing section situated down the steps at the rear of the shop has a wide variety of ethically sourced clothing to suit all ages and tastes, including the traditional Oxford college scarves. Official Clothing Range From T-shirts and hoodies to polo shirts, rugby shirts and sweatshirts, the official clothing range is regularly updated in terms of styles and designs. For instance, pink is a key fashion colour for summer 2017 and on-trend exclusives to the shop include a pink and blue striped rugby shirt, ‘heritage’ sweatshirt and double pocket ‘kangaroo’ hoodie. Summer Promotions Look out for the following seasonal themes and offers showcased in the windows and in-store: - Hello Summer! Get ready for hot sunny days, picnics in the park and summer sports. Our best-selling cricket jumpers are now back in stock along with sports-inspired, vintage-style graphic T-shirts. - 3 FOR 2. Buy three items and get the cheapest free. This offer is available on a selection of popular items from the University crest range including stationery, logo T-shirts, mugs and teddies. In all, the shop is a treasure trove of beautiful and quality products, and unlike all other souvenir shops in Oxford, all profits are returned to and benefit the University. Once visited, if you wish you’d bought more, don’t despair, as the vast majority of items are also available online at www.oushop.com.
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    Reviewed on
    2017-07-28 09:34:29
  • Pint Shop

    A busy evening on George Street and we are off to The Pint Shop. Discovering it is far more than just a place for a drink, possibly one of the best dining and drinking experiences in the city. Ale drinkers (like me), will love the 14 ales on offer. Including ‘Eternal Mango’ by Nene Valley, a sour Gose ale and ‘Us and Them’, a collaboration ale between The Pint Shop and De Mollen brewery, which is a scary 11.8%! I plumped for a Milk Stout from the Bristol Beer Factory, leaving my second choice with General Manager Ross, who picked a fantastic ‘Hepcat’ Session IPA from Gipsy Hill Brewery. There is literally a beer for everyone, including Gluten Free beer from Nene Valley, and Moor Breweries Gluten free, Vegan ale. Gin fans are spoilt with over 100 to choose from! My partner Sara, a Yorkshire lass, was drawn to ‘Masons Yorkshire Dry Gin’, with hints of fennel and liquorice. Sara followed with ‘Japanese Gin’, with aromas of sesame, cucumber and shiso leaf, both distinct and flavoursome. Ross followed this with the most bizarre drink of the evening, ‘Anty Gin’; a gin actually made from distilled ants! If quirky drinks take your fancy, then drop by. Yes, if you didn’t know, The Pint Shop also has a spacious, intimately lit restaurant downstairs, catering for couples and large parties alike. For a more intimate experience try ‘The Carriages’ room, which feels like sitting in a train carriage, or ‘The Party’ room, available for meetings and private events. The Pint Shop’s menu is compact and robust, changing 6 times a year, bolstered by a changing specials board, so no one visit will ever be the same. Share, you won't regret it. Sara’s starter was air dried pork collar, cider salami, pork ends, with pickled red onions, piccalilli and sea salt crackers (oh those crackers!). I opted for southern fried chicken with saffron aioli. Our appreciative noises made it clear the food was delicious. The chicken was fresh and crispy, the aioli complimenting it perfectly. The meat platter was a carnivorous treat. My main was a wood grilled curry of South Indian stone bass, slow-cooked in a house sauce, with toasted coconut and red onion, served with a charred naan, rice and coriander and peanut chutney. Sara chose the overnight pork belly with braised courgettes and lemon from the specials board, with a potato side. I am a convert to curried fish, it was moist, zinging with fresh spice and flavour. Sara was in heaven with the moreish crackling and tender meat on her pork belly. The potatoes, buttery and cooked to perfection, with a hint of smokey griddling. Our server Rihanna had a hand in the creation of Sara’s special showing the passion and involvement of The Pint Shop team. Bubbly Rihanna clearly enjoys her job, joking freely about donning her whites again! Desserts consisted of The Pint Shop fancies; a blondie, rough brandy snap and sesame brittle, light and perfect for a sweet tooth. Hafod, Brunswick & Riseley cheeses, served with sea salt crackers; the cheeses creamy and packed with flavour and aroma. Sharing coffee and desserts was a perfect finale to a delicious feast. Our evening left us in no doubt that we would be back to The Pint Shop. It offers something quirky, artisan and homely, making it a mecca for ale lovers, gin lovers and gastronomes alike. 5 Things we liked: 1. Choice of Ales and Gins 2. Friendly professionalism of The Pint Shop team 3. Relaxed atmosphere 4. Flavour and presentation of food 5. Again, the crazy choice of Ales and Gins
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    Reviewed on
    2017-07-07 11:00:17
  • Aidan Meller Gallery

    Aidan Meller gallery on Turl Street offer private collectors access to the best examples of original work by the world's masters from John Constable to Millais, Picasso and Warhol. The gallery, exceptional outside London for the quality of work exhibited, is located in the heart of Oxford’s city centre. Exclusively featuring rare original work from internationally acclaimed artists, Aidan Meller has earned a reputation as one of the foremost galleries in the UK. Amongst the most popular exhibitions launched in 2016 were The Bloomsbury Set, Calder and Miro, School of Paris, and Old Masters. Other shows featured work from artists including John Constable, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Andy Warhol. Only a few paces from the Bodleian, the gallery is open to all seven days a week. For clients living further afield, the gallery email newsletter and blog provide a virtual resource to keep up to date with the gallery and to discover more about the works on show. Available both via the website and from inside the gallery by private appointment, Meller's consultancy service and ‘Spotlight Talks’ is the perfect complement to the specialist work exhibited. Private appointments at the Director's private home provide clients with a unique opportunity to receive one-to-one advice from the Director. Whether the client wants to discuss starting a collection, sourcing something specific, or talking through art as an investment, catering for the interests of the individual collector is the guiding principle of this service. Meller’s Elizabethan manor, a treasure trove of historical and artistic merit, is the perfect setting for viewing ancient and modern masters alike. For select clients wishing to develop their knowledge of art history as they sew the seeds of a private collection, Aidan Meller also offers tours of the Ashmolean collection, or famous local art- historical landmarks. In addition to private appointments, Aidan Meller gallery regularly holds large scale Private Views and events, to illuminate an exhibition, to introduce a particular department, or to discuss building an art portfolio over a glass of prosecco. The gallery’s programme of events is engineered not only to benefit individual clients but also to contribute to the artistic life of the local community. Recently, Meller has presented art history talks at local primary and secondary schools, bringing original artworks by famous artists to inspire students to get involved in art.
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    Reviewed on
    2017-06-15 12:04:50
  • COSMO

    Cosmo is a really exciting addition to Oxford’s restaurant scene, especially for those who can never decide what they want on a menu – here you can simply have everything. This world kitchen offers a dazzling buffet of over 150 dishes from around the globe, and there are also several live cooking stations that rustle up tasty plates to order (we loved the noodle bar). Whether you’re a fan of British, Indian, Chinese, Italian or Japanese cuisine, they’re all here, and more. All the dishes are cooked in small batches and are constantly replenished, ensuring they’re always fresh, and each type of cuisine comes with its own accompaniments – the exquisite sushi comes with ear-popping wasabi, the hearty curries come with fluffy naan bread and crisp poppadoms, the wide variety of stir-fries come with egg-fried rice and perfect spring rolls, and the roast beef comes with traditional English roast potatoes and Yorkshire pudding. Also on offer is a range of salads, pizza, burgers, pasta… the list goes on. You can return to the buffet as many times as you like, and fill your plate with whatever takes your fancy (there are no rules) – but don’t forget to leave space for the mouth-watering dessert section, featuring beautiful cakes, brownies, cheesecakes, mousses, make-your-own ice-cream cones, fresh fruit and an irresistible Belgian chocolate fountain (complete with marshmallows for dipping). There really is something for everyone here – it would be hard for even the fussiest of eaters not to find something they liked at Cosmo. It is exceptional value, and the service is friendly and efficient, enabling you to concentrate on eating your way around the world. This isn’t so much a restaurant as a foodie fantasy come to life. Just make sure you arrive with an empty stomach so you can make the most of it!
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    Reviewed on
    2017-04-15 12:22:23
  • Pierre Victoire

    Pierre Victoire bistrot, located on Little Clarendon Street in the heart of Oxford’s Jericho district, has been delighting customers since 1996. If you’re looking for traditional French food which is presented well and doesn’t cost a fortune, then get yourself over to Pierre Victoire. As we walk into the Bistrot on a busy Saturday Lunchtime, French classical music is playing and someone is waiting to show us to our table. French prints are seen hanging on the walls as we sit down, the atmosphere is very friendly and the staff are eager to please with their quick service and happy manner. There is a selection of both a la carte and set menus. Lunch is from £8.50 and you can enjoy a three course prix fixe dinner for £24.50 I loved the food and my friends were very complimentary about what they had too. For my starter I chose the smoked Salmon paté with dill crème fraiche and warm brioche. The portion size was just right. I very much enjoyed the contrast between the sweet brioche and the creamy salmon. My friend selected the Salade Canard Fumé - which she found very tasty, saying the walnuts in the mayo were a brilliant touch! While we were waiting for our main courses to arrive, we admired the low lighting and the single rose which adorned all the tables in the room. When the food arrived, it all looked very pleasing and we couldn’t wait to start eating. My friend had a child’s portion of moules. The cream was flavoured with thyme and garlic which I thought made the dish more delightful. My other friend had the Roasted Cauliflower and Parmesan Risotto. She thought that it was lovely, with a hint of cumin on the toasted almonds which added a slight Asian flavour to the main. Finally, I chose the Confit Duck which was plentiful and the Seville orange sauce which surrounded the potato and onion rösti like a moat was delicious and it definitely added a new taste to the already ‘full of flavour dish’. I also really enjoyed the creamy spinach accompanying the work of art I had to eat. Clean plates all around. Now to dessert, a truly wonderful ending to a very high standard meal. I had the Crème Caramel, as I am a lover of the golden sauce which floods the plate. There was Sticky Toffee Pudding. The light sponge combined with the delicious toffee sauce and double cream made for a scrumptious delight. My friend went for the Chocolate Crepe and she discovered that heaven on a plate was sitting right in front of her. Her pancake was well cooked and the presentation topped the dessert off. Each of our three desserts came with a garnish of mint which added colour and maturity to the dishes. So if a reasonably priced delicious lunch or dinner in a rustic, authentic French restaurant is what you’re after then look no further than Pierre Victoire.
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    Reviewed on
    2017-03-31 12:35:05
  • Tara Tripp Hearing

    Tara Tripp Hearing Care is a leading family run independent hearing practice. The practice has built an excellent reputation in Oxfordshire and the surrounding areas for providing a complete hearing healthcare service. From the provision of the latest digital hearing aids to effective micro-suction wax removal, Tara Tripp Hearing ensures each client receives the care, attention and expertise to solve or manage their hearing impairment. Diagnosing Hearing Loss Hearing tests at Tara Tripp Hearing Care utilises state of the art equipment and result in a comprehensive and detailed report on the clients hearing and a full analysis of options. Tara Tripp Hearing Care do not only check what pitch of beeps you can hear, but give a full diagnostic assessment. Hearing assessments include; > Ear examinations using a fibre optic camera meaning the client sees exactly what is happening in their canal. The health of the ears is checked and any wax or debris is removed using micro-suction. > Measuring whether the mechanical function of the ear drum and middle ear cavity are working normally. > Assessing the acoustic reflex of the middle ear. > Determining the amount of air flowing through the Eustachian tube into the middle ear. > Assessing the softest sounds that can be heard. > Measuring how effectively each individual can understand speech in noisy and quiet environments. As an independent practice Tara Tripp Hearing Care are able to supply hearing aids from all manufacturers as they are not tied into any agreements from laboratories. Any recommendations made are based on each individuals hearing requirements. If hearing aids are required, Tara Tripp Hearing Care provide a free 45 day trial on every hearing system recommended. This time enables the wearer to determine benefit in their everyday environment nor is there any commitment to purchase. Training Nurses In addition to providing hearing systems and removing ear wax among other hearing related solutions, Tara Tripp Hearing Care pioneered the ear wax management course for primary care nurses in the Oxfordshire area. Three Oxford Aural Care Study Days are held each year at the practice, providing training for Practice and District Nurses, Health Care Assistants and GP’s. Recognising Excellence Tara Tripp Hearing Care is an AIHHP (Association of Independent Hearing Healthcare Professionals) Centre of Excellence. AIHHP Centres of Excellence must meet strict criteria in terms of equipment and service levels. These criteria are under constant review to each centre represents the highest standards of “best practice” in the Profession. More recently, Tara Tripp Hearing Care was awarded ‘Oxfordshire’s Favourite for Health and Beauty’ in the 2016 Living In Oxford Awards. To find out more on how Tara Tripp Hearing Care can help your hearing needs, get in contact today.
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    Reviewed on
    2017-03-15 12:42:45
  • Chiltern Railways

    NEW RAIL LINE TO LONDON MARYLEBONE NOW OPEN Chiltern Railways and Network Rail’s new rail link connecting central Oxford with the capital is now open, following a unique £320m investment by the franchise operator and the infrastructure manager. The completion of the new rail link to London – the first from a major British city in more than 100 years – sees central Oxford connected to Marylebone via successful new stations Oxford Parkway and Bicester Village. It has been just 16 months since the line opened from Oxford Parkway in October 2015. The first year has seen over 1.5 million passengers using the line; this is expected to grow with the extension into the city. Oxford residents now have an alternative way of getting into London. The new service will offer two new trains per hour throughout the day between Oxford and London Marylebone with journey times to the capital from just over an hour. A close collaborative partnership between Chiltern Railways and Network Rail has delivered high levels of performance and Chiltern is consistently one of the top rated franchise operators for customer satisfaction in the National Rail Passenger Survey. Dave Penney, Managing Director of Chiltern Railways said: “This is a significant milestone in the history of Chiltern Railways. The new line delivers meaningful benefits for those living and working in the region and will be economically advantageous for the regional economy.” It creates direct competition in the rail market between Oxford and London giving customers a real choice and flexibility, as well as delivering the first new service between a major British city and London for over 100 years.”
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    Reviewed on
    2017-03-15 12:36:43
  • Headington Carriers

    When you have lived somewhere for 37 years, moving is not something you can enter into without a good deal of planning, thought and careful consideration as to which removal company you use. On top of this, moving from over 7,000 square feet of accommodation to somewhere a little over 2,000 square feet certainly brings to mind ’fitting a quart into a pint pot’! Given that we were initially moving into rented accommodation whilst obtaining planning permission for our new home gave us some flexibility, there were still three different destinations for our furniture. The move was basically carried out over two weeks from the 23rd November to the 6th December. We first met Daniel Barrett, the manager of Headington Carriers, on the 27th September and immediately felt we were in safe hands. My worries about moving the snooker table (with 6 x 70 kg slates) from our basement, moving cumbersome gym equipment, large Bay trees planted in huge terracotta pots and a great deal of office equipment, were all put to rest. We accepted their quote which I thought was very reasonable and decided to look no further. This company has a depth of resources, with men and vehicles in good supply. No wonder they are first choice for Thames Valley Police and the local NHS. As arranged, they dismantled the snooker table and packed all that was needed prior to the 24th and when the actual move happened on that day, everything went to plan. Of course I should have realised ‘that was the easy bit’! We cherry picked the furniture we needed for the rental and my wife soon made it look just like home! Getting everything out of a very large house is some task. On that final day the 6th December there were 4 large Headington Carrier Vehicles in our drive and it was bedlam. Two full skips were to be collected and there was a team of cleaners making sure everything was as neat and tidy as possible. It didn’t help that it was a filthy day and didn’t stop raining. The Bay tree pots had absorbed a lot of rain and now weighed something like 100 kg each. There was the usual delay with completion but we were out by 2.30pm. Some furniture is now in store at Headington Carriers and some of the garden furniture is in the stables at our new site. I know moving is not something I have done for a while but we chose the right company and I have no hesitation in recommending Headington Carriers, lead by Peter Barrett, Managing Director and his son Daniel.
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    Reviewed on
    2017-02-15 12:48:47