A Gastronomic Feast!
Discover the best independent restaurants and cafes to visit on your next short break to Oxford.
City breaks are all about exploring a new city, its architecture, history and local flair. It’s all about the adventure and escaping the ‘norm’.
When it comes to cities with individuality, Oxford has a long and proud heritage of independent and unusual eateries set in iconic locations with stunning views that will leave you wondering where to begin on your Eat Oxford.
Make your next visit to Oxford a unique one and check out our list of top recommendations for a truly independent gastronomic experience.
The Plough at 38
Based in Cornmarket Street in Oxford’s centre, this historic gastro pub and restaurant first served thirsty travellers in 1656. For nearly 300 years the pub served town and gown drinkers. After a brief stint (well 100 years is not long in the history of The Plough) the building housed a tailors. In 2018, after undergoing an extensive refurbishment it was reinstated as the perfect place to relax and enjoy food and drink that has all been sourced from local vendors. Choose from the spacious restaurant upstairs to the downstairs bar or outside area, to sample the classic pub favourites, traditional real ales and craft beer.
The Ashmolean Museum Café & Restaurant
The Ashmolean is the UK’s oldest museum, founded in 1683 as the University of Oxford’s museum of art and archaeology. It’s also home to the relaxed Café and Rooftop terrace. Here you can enjoy an afternoon tea or lunch whilst being captivated by the stunning views across Oxford from up high.
We’d recommend booking in advance to make sure you can grab a spot with the best view!
The Market Cellar Door
Oxford’s smallest wine shop and bar is hidden in the historic Covered Market. Opened in 2020, The Market Cellar Door encourages its guests to bring their own food, as long as it’s sourced from the Covered Market – helping combine the produce found in the Covered Market with its wines as part of the ‘Covered Market Safari Hunt’.
With selection comes decision making – sample the Cellar Door Tasting Board for beers and wines!
Jericho Coffee Traders
Located on Oxford’s High Street (known as ‘The High’), Jericho Coffee Traders roastery and espresso bar focusses on exacting standards of espresso and filter coffees, mixed with locally made pastries and cakes.
The Grand Café
The Grand Café is said to stand in the same location as the first coffee house in England (according to Samuel Pepys’ Diary, 1650). During the day, enjoy lunch, cream teas and high teas in the marble arched, historic gold-leafed building.
You can find The Grand Café just a few minutes from the Bodleian Library.
An offer not to miss
This summer we’re launching #keblestaycations where you can create your own unique, authentically Oxford experience. Keble College is opening its historic doors this summer to offer you the chance to stay in the college, with a choice of single, double or twin room, deep cleaned and ready for the UK Staycation of 2021 AND including a delicious breakfast in the Gothic Dining Hall (said to be an inspiration for the great hall in the Harry Potter series).
Bookings are now open for August and September 2021!