When did ' normal ' eating out get so shit ?

#1
I dont eat out much , but i have two mates coming down next weekend so decided to actually check out whats on offer inmy local big city [Oxford ] .

As above , when did it get so limited and shit ? Its not a big place but i have found most pubs withing 5 minutes of the centre which are nice/cool places only serve bloody wood fired pizza and burgers and thats it .
Chain or at least big chain places are unappealing to me because i know in most you are going to be rushed out to flip the table and have to put up with something wrong , surely service and bloody expensive overpriced drink [ Bills , something like £4.50 for a 300ml own brand piss beer ] .

Other places i have seen , a Onglet steak for £17 , ok thats a fair bit but i would pay it , but .,...oh whats that , its another £3.50 for some fries with it !
 
L

lumpy2

Guest
#2
I don't know what you class as " normal eating out" but pub food has come on in leaps and bounds over the last couple of decades. Prior to that it would be a little glass cabinet with a stale cheese roll and some pickled eggs!

Your best bet, value wise, would be to find a decent Indian or Chinese.
 
#4
I dont eat out much , but i have two mates coming down next weekend so decided to actually check out whats on offer inmy local big city [Oxford ] .

As above , when did it get so limited and shit ? Its not a big place but i have found most pubs withing 5 minutes of the centre which are nice/cool places only serve bloody wood fired pizza and burgers and thats it .
Chain or at least big chain places are unappealing to me because i know in most you are going to be rushed out to flip the table and have to put up with something wrong , surely service and bloody expensive overpriced drink [ Bills , something like £4.50 for a 300ml own brand piss beer ] .

Other places i have seen , a Onglet steak for £17 , ok thats a fair bit but i would pay it , but .,...oh whats that , its another £3.50 for some fries with it !
Behave yourself. If you can't think beyond Harvesters for something to eat, then of course it's going to be shite. As @lumpy2 says, though, that scene's got a lot better ... but even so....
 
#5
Things got quite a lot better until about 2-3 years ago when rising prices meant smaller portions and cheaper mass produced food.

In work we occasionally pop out for a Friday pub meal at a local Brewers Fayre. A couple of years ago the food was really good for the price and the portions were pretty big. We went a couple of weeks ago to find that the portions are only about 2/3 of what they were for the same price.

Now we normally have a "light meal" there, but last time I left feeling still hungry!

This is now common amongst the chains and if you want a decent meal you really have to look around.

I was working down in Duxford a few weeks ago and went to the John Barleycorn. Massive piece of fish and a pile of chips. Coould not even look at a pudding. But the same at a Premier Inn type hostelry is much smaller (and not as good).

Basically you are being milked by the chains who just want you in and out and buy a pudding for another £4.95 on top of the £7.95 you just paid for the meal.
 
#6
I dont eat out much , but i have two mates coming down next weekend so decided to actually check out whats on offer inmy local big city [Oxford ] .

As above , when did it get so limited and shit ? Its not a big place but i have found most pubs withing 5 minutes of the centre which are nice/cool places only serve bloody wood fired pizza and burgers and thats it .
Chain or at least big chain places are unappealing to me because i know in most you are going to be rushed out to flip the table and have to put up with something wrong , surely service and bloody expensive overpriced drink [ Bills , something like £4.50 for a 300ml own brand piss beer ] .

Other places i have seen , a Onglet steak for £17 , ok thats a fair bit but i would pay it , but .,...oh whats that , its another £3.50 for some fries with it !
FFS - there are fecking loads of decent eats around Oxford - what area you in? Some of the smaller less well advertised places are better - do you have to start in the centre? Go for outside Oxford first and drink your way in after that.

Let me know what sort of scran yer after and where you are and I'll guide you in! ;-)
 
#8
Years ago, my Mum and Dad used to go to the same hotel for Sunday lunch, which had a good menu and a good chef. A couple of years after Dad died, the chef left and the place changed hands - it's now quite poor - good for Christmas, but the rest of the year, you get the impression that they really don't care, as they've got into the 'conference trade'.

So we started going to pubs, and the offerings from Table Table and Ember Inns (the two local ones) are pretty good. In neither have we been rushed, even with a little old lady who insists on taking her time over everything. Does help if you book, though, as you then get a guarantee of a table - just turning up can be difficult, especially on Mother's Day, etc. Personally, I don't rate Harvester, but that's from my experiences in the one at The Lowry, I don't know if others are better. Have a look at the Ember Inns ones in particular
 
#10
I dont eat out much , but i have two mates coming down next weekend so decided to actually check out whats on offer inmy local big city [Oxford ] .

As above , when did it get so limited and shit ? Its not a big place but i have found most pubs withing 5 minutes of the centre which are nice/cool places only serve bloody wood fired pizza and burgers and thats it .
Chain or at least big chain places are unappealing to me because i know in most you are going to be rushed out to flip the table and have to put up with something wrong , surely service and bloody expensive overpriced drink [ Bills , something like £4.50 for a 300ml own brand piss beer ] .

Other places i have seen , a Onglet steak for £17 , ok thats a fair bit but i would pay it , but .,...oh whats that , its another £3.50 for some fries with it !
Get yourself down the Cowley Road for a ruby, Aziz is usually pretty decent. Or Qu'min in St. Clement's. Hi-Lo can be good fun for some ok Jamaican scoff. There are loads more down there. Or Browns on the Woodstock Rd for a brasserie-type eaterie. Gee's on the Banbury Rd is a bit posher and both of those are near the touristy pubs in St. Giles , the Eagle & Child where the Inklings - Tolkein and CS Lewis's gang- went on the piss and the Lamb & Flag opposite. Not too far from the Turf Tavern and the King's Arms.
 

skid2

On ROPS
On ROPs
Book Reviewer
#11
If it's food. Forget Nicholsons pubs, like the bird and the baby in Oxford. The foods centrally distributed. And really poor.
 
#12
...but i have found most pubs withing 5 minutes of the centre which are nice/cool places only serve bloody wood fired pizza and burgers and thats it .
Same in Manchester for the last couple of years. The 'street food/dirty food' scene was imported to Manchester from London, and it's all over the place. Some indies have even got a chain going. Average price for a burger is £8.
 
#13
Same in Manchester for the last couple of years. The 'street food/dirty food' scene was imported to Manchester from London, and it's all over the place. Some indies have even got a chain going. Average price for a burger is £8.
You mean literally street food out of the tents? I've had some of that - it's all right.
If you mean in restaurants, then it's a city centre. You're not short of people who'll sell shite to the unwary, but there's plenty great places in town.
 
#14
Get yourself down the Cowley Road for a ruby, Aziz is usually pretty decent. Or Qu'min in St. Clement's. Hi-Lo can be good fun for some ok Jamaican scoff. There are loads more down there. Or Browns on the Woodstock Rd for a brasserie-type eaterie. Gee's on the Banbury Rd is a bit posher and both of those are near the touristy pubs in St. Giles , the Eagle & Child where the Inklings - Tolkein and CS Lewis's gang- went on the piss and the Lamb & Flag opposite. Not too far from the Turf Tavern and the King's Arms.
Yes , i know it well down there . I suppose im looking for somewhere 3 people can have something decent to eat , get pissed for a few hours and not be hoofed out after 75 minutes . Central Oxford is a no no for that really , unless i go somewhere like Quod . Browns completely went over my head i might give that a go .
 
#15
OP - here. Took me 5 minutes to find somewhere I'd like to try.

Gee's Restaurant & Bar Menus, Oxford, Book a table
£13 for 2 courses, £16 for 3.

Oxford has plenty of cash washing about and plenty students, so should be plenty diversity.

Lazy ass.
Just had a look at their menu - it's making me hungry and I only ate a couple of hours ago!

There are good little restaurants tucked away in odd places - I'm lucky that there's a great one about a mile away from me, and three minutes (one stop) on the train if I'm feeling particularly lazy. They have a great reputation and atmosphere and not too pricey, either - anyone in the Manchester area shold give them a whirl. No - I'm not on commission, but the owner's related to the landlady of my local (it's a Local Local for Local people)
SMITHS  RESTAURANT 1
Plus, any restaurant that welcomes little children and then puts "Pepper Pig" on the menu gets my vote!
 
#16
You mean literally street food out of the tents? I've had some of that - it's all right.
If you mean in restaurants, then it's a city centre. You're not short of people who'll sell shite to the unwary, but there's plenty great places in town.
Some the newly re-furbished Corn Exchange is slowly opening into an indoor high-end street food venue. TBH, it looks fantastic, but it's overpriced.
 
#17
Same in Manchester for the last couple of years. The 'street food/dirty food' scene was imported to Manchester from London, and it's all over the place. Some indies have even got a chain going. Average price for a burger is £8.
The chavvy main drinking street , George street in Oxford actaully had alovely old victorian pub called the Grapes there , where all the luvvies from the theatre went after shows . I looked up restaurants on Trip advisor and its been hipsterrized , still claiming to be the oldest pub there but they gutted it . It only serves a 10 beers or so , 4 or 5 burgers and 6or 7 seven pizzas or so !
 
#18
OP - here. Took me 5 minutes to find somewhere I'd like to try.

Gee's Restaurant & Bar Menus, Oxford, Book a table
£13 for 2 courses, £16 for 3.

Oxford has plenty of cash washing about and plenty students, so should be plenty diversity.

Lazy ass.
I know Gee's and its not the place three chaps can sit and get sozzled really , very nice but quite serene so not the right place for a big meal then bottle after bottle . My ex missus used to work there as well a few years back .
 
#20
Just had a look at their menu - it's making me hungry and I only ate a couple of hours ago!

There are good little restaurants tucked away in odd places - I'm lucky that there's a great one about a mile away from me, and three minutes (one stop) on the train if I'm feeling particularly lazy. They have a great reputation and atmosphere and not too pricey, either - anyone in the Manchester area shold give them a whirl. No - I'm not on commission, but the owner's related to the landlady of my local (it's a Local Local for Local people)
SMITHS RESTAURANT 1
Plus, any restaurant that welcomes little children and then puts "Pepper Pig" on the menu gets my vote!
Looks good. Shame the site's not mobile friendly. The Northern Quarter has some real hidden gems. A bit further afield in rammy, I've said before, there's about ten cracking food joints within a mile. Food's definitely on the up in UK.
 

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