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Magdalen Arms, Oxford

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user reviews of the Magdalen Arms, Oxford

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

Most of the pub's given over to eating, but the part nearest the door's still a pub in character. The interior is strikingly large, more so than you'd expect from the exterior.

It's quite dimly lit, and the dining in some ways is akin to Dickensian ideas of feasting, with some dishes featuring large amounts of quality meat.

The food was superb, and the ale kept well. It's in a typical large period Oxford building.
eddybeer - 7 Feb 2015 19:26
Re-reviewing this and surprised to see that my previous comments are still the most recent ones. I was unfair and several trips back have revealed this to be superb - the food is nothing short of sensational and sets very high standards in the world of gastropubdom. Sunday lunchtime is an especially enjoyable time to visit and a venison shank with spicy pear and celeriac mash was sublime. Ales are good and the garden provides an opportunity to wile away a summer evening. Topnotch.
BoehmBawerk - 22 Dec 2012 21:08
What they do, they do pretty well - good ales and food that looked well worth ordering - it's just all a bit safe - focus groups have obviously been all over it like a rash and although care has gone into it all, the result is a bit clinical. They must be raking it in.
BoehmBawerk - 25 Dec 2011 08:55
This place is brilliant. It is unashamedly a gastropub; just drinking here is a waste. They do real ale, and you can have three 1/3 pint tasters for 3.10 GBP which is not bad. The food however is exceptional. For the first time ever I envy people who live in Oxford. Service is friendly, the chef is amazing, the clientele are happy. Seems odd reviewing this place here though. I wouldn't really go for a beer in the evening if you know what I mean.
dry_riser_inlet - 1 May 2011 14:01
Out with the dodgy coves in tracksuits and in with fine dining and fine ales. The atmosphere was relaxed and friendly on a Sunday lunchtime visit with he friendly staff happy to advise on the menu. One minor complaint was that two of us ordered the same dish, roast pigeon, and one came overdone with the other a little too rare for my friend's liking. The bar billiards table is ideal entertainment as you digest.
cheesyal - 9 Apr 2010 00:12
Was looking forward to eating here after hearing good things about it. Sadly it was shut last night (Sunday 3rd).
thomashenry - 4 Jan 2010 15:06
I recently had dinner here and the food atmosphere and service were fantastic. I had the Venison (14) with duck fat potato cake and red cabbage and my wife had the fish Stew (6). Both were beautifully cooked by chef Tony Abarno and were easily the best dishes i have eaten in an Oxford restaurant.

It's a fantastic place to go either for dinner or just a drink as i did the following night!

I am overjoyed Oxford does at last have a 'great restaurant!!' I have no doubt that the Magdalen Arms will soon gain the deserved reputation as Oxford's best restaurant.

adamrufus - 29 Oct 2009 12:05
The Magdalen has just been taken over by new management, completely refurbished and is now marketing itself as a gastro-pub specialism in locally source produce. We tried it out last night after reading an article about it in the Oxford Mail.
There was Theaktons Best & XB on draught, of which I enjoyed a couple of pints of the Best - a favourite of mine that I don't see around Oxford too much. There seemed to be a decent choice of soft drinks too.
We also had some food there which was really good and not too badly priced.
Overall the pub is a million miles away from what the Magdalen was previously so is well worth a visit.
BotleyBen - 24 Oct 2009 09:59

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