On Sunday we headed out for lunch to try the Autumn/Winter menu at Beefeater Ock Mill Abingdon. It’s the first time I can remember eating at a Beefeater eatery and it was to be Monkey’s first trip to Abingdon. The Ock Mill is a lovely old building on the north of the town and within easy reach of the A34. There’s ample free car parking on site and it’s also attached to a Premier Inn.
We’d booked at table for 12 o’clock so we were amongst the first guests to be seated. Our drinks order was taken before we’d sat down and we had a look through the menus. A retired couple sitting next to us started chatting away, they were regulars and happily talked us through their recommendations.
The kids menu is Mr and Little Miss themed which went down really well with Monkey. He loved the activity booklet and was more than happy colouring in and completing the tasks whilst waiting for his food.
The kids menu has a few deals based on a 1, 2 or 3 course meal. All come with free squash. I wish we’d been made aware of this when we placed our drinks order as by the time I realised myself Monkey was already enjoying a Fruit Shoot. For £5.99 a child can order a starter, main, pudding and a squash from the kids menu. Monkey opted for the Fun Veggie Sticks ( we asked for Mayonnaise rather than a Sour Cream and Chive Dip), Pizza (you can add 2 toppings but Monkey likes his plain) and you can include 2 side dishes (Monkey opted for double portions of Garlic Bread) and a Funny Face Ice Cream with Cone.
Monkey enjoyed his meal, although we were both a little underwhelmed with his starter – no carrot sticks and the thinnest slices of cucumber possible. It did feel as if it had been chucked on the plate. But carrots and presentation aside, he enjoyed himself.
Daddy P opted for Crispy Garlic & Herb Breaded Mushrooms, Roast Chicken and Apple & Caramel Crumble.
Whilst I tried the Loaded Potato Dippers, 8oz Sirloin Steak with Mushroom Sauce and Onion Rings, and as there was no Sticky Toffee Pudding, I also opted for the Apple & Caramel Crumble (there’s also an Apple & Cherry Crumble option if you prefer Cherries).
Daddy P enjoyed his meal although we were both a bit surprised that the Apple & Caramel Crumble seemed more like a cake, and was cold. It was nice, just not what we were expecting. The waiter suggested added bacon bites to my starter and in hindsight I don’t think it needed them, as the bacon was quite salty. Otherwise it was something different and quite nice. The steak was cooked medium rare as I like it and the mushroom sauce was nice.
Our orders were taken promptly and the food was served quickly throughout our stay, which is always welcome, especially when eating out with hungry children.
We were left a little underwhelmed though, and I think some of that comes down to the waiting staff. We clearly hadn’t been to the restaurant before, but no-one made us aware of the loyalty card scheme that Beefeater offer. I wouldn’t have known if I hadn’t spotted an application form when we were waiting to be seated. A balloon was produced for my son, but we were all still eating our desserts. Eating a pudding whilst making sure you don’t lose a helium balloon doesn’t lend itself to a few relaxed moments.
I should have looked more closely at the bill too – just realised we were over charged for Monkey’s 3 course meal, £6.47 instead of £5.99 and obviously we’d paid for a Fruit Shoot because we weren’t made aware of the kids drinks deal by the member of staff who took us to our table.The free squash wasn’t offered at any point during the meal either.
The food was fine for the price, our meal cost us just over £53. The Beefeater Ock Mill Abingdon is clean, and was full of happy eaters when we left. It’s also ideally placed for the town centre, being only a 5-10 minute stroll away from the heart of Abingdon.
disclaimer: we were give vouchers to cover most of our meal in exchange for an honest review