Daddy P and I have been married for 7 years. With him being back to full on work mode after our Cornish holiday and Monkey going back to school, it really got rather forgotten. So on Sunday we enjoyed a belated anniversary lunch at The Perch in Oxford.
It was going to be a real treat, enjoying lunch in one of Oxford’s oldest pubs. There’s been a pub on the site in Binsey, Oxford for over 800 years and The Perch as it stands today, dates back to the 17th century. Situated just a few minutes drive from the bustling city centre, The Perch is found on a quiet country lane close to the banks of the River Thames. Such a tranquil settling for a belated anniversary lunch at The Perch in Oxford.
As we arrived in the car park just before 12.00 on Sunday, we were rather surprised to see it already rather full. We’d obviously been oblivious to a well-kept local secret. It’s definitely worth booking ahead, as The Perch seems very popular. This all boded rather well for our meal.
Inside the pub has a charming character, with plenty of seating inside, including this lovely ‘snug’ area.
But the sun was shining, and we were eager to make the most of it, and headed into the garden. Our table was on a covered terrace, but I could see plenty of seating around the garden.
Taking our 6 year old out for lunch can sometimes be an interesting experience, and not always the most relaxing for me. But The Perch had a nice relaxed vibe, and I didn’t feel that other diners would be cursing being near to our table! There is a Childrens menu available for £7.95 which includes a main meal and dessert. On Sunday’s children can also enjoy a mini roast dinner for a £2.00 supplement. I think it would be great if there was a Starter option too, but in absence of this I ordered him a plate of Homemade Breads. Daddy P opted for the Courgette, Broad Bean and Rosary Goats Cheese Soup and I decided on the Potted Kiln Smoked Salmon with Watercress Mouse.
The homemade breads were welcomed by my son and he was most impressed that the rolls were warm. I had to try a little of Daddy P’s soup, would have been rude not to surely? It was devine and unlike any I’ve tried before. My OH is a soup champion, and if he gives it the thumbs up, you know it’s a good one. It was excellent. My starter arrived with a couple of slices of toasted Soda Bread, the combination worked really well. I’d have liked a couple more slices of bread to have been included, but my son shared a little of his. Three happy customers after the starters.
Now being Sunday, Daddy P was never going to opt for anything other than a Roast Dinner and went straight for the Roast Rump of Beef. Monkey isn’t such a fan, so he decided on the Battered Fish and Chips, served with peas (mayonnaise replaced the tartare sauce) for his main meal. He did have some considerable deliberation over whether to go for this or the Fishcake option, thankfully we had a very patient waitress. As for me, I very nearly went for the Chicken, Ham, Leek and Suet Crust Pie, but in the end the Slow Roasted Lamb Shoulder was calling out to me.
I loved the mixture of old style patterned plates and the enamel baking dishes I remember from my childhood. My son had already spotted that some of the chairs had come from an old church. Little details that just added to the appeal of the setting.
Back to the food. I was so relieved to see that my son’s plate hadn’t been piled high with chips. He’s not the biggest fan of any form of potato, and I do hate it when it’s presumed children like to eat millions of chips and not a lot else. His fish was beautifully cooked, full of flavour and went down well.
Our roast dinners came with vegetables, a side of cauliflower cheese each, horseradish sauce for the beef and mint sauce for my lamb. We both thought that the portion sizes worked well and the meat, both lamb and beef, melted in the mouth. Full of flavour, a really good, hearty, tradition Sunday lunch. Yum.
A belated anniversary lunch at The Perch in Oxford could not possibly be celebrated without a good pudd now could it. My son was always going to pick Vanilla Ice Cream as his option, Daddy P decided on the Queen of Puddings and I rather fancied the Strawberry and Elderflower Eton Mess for my dessert.
A lovely way to end an enjoyable meal. One happy 6 year old, one husband who actually tried something different for his dessert and liked it, and one me, who thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience. Good, tasty food, in a really lovely setting.
Throughout our meal we spotted people approaching the pub through the gardens, including a few fishermen. We decided we just had to explore, where were all these people coming from? There’s a pathway at the bottom of the garden with lovely fairy lights to guide you along.
Before you know it, you are enjoying Port Meadows, I cannot believe we’ve never been before. It was such a lovely way to end our meal.
It’s possible to walk from Wolvercote to Jericho on the very edge of the city centre through Port Meadows, with Binsey and the Perch in the middle. We’ll certainly be back to enjoy the food at The Perch and to walk off our excesses afterwards!
disclosure: we were given a complimentary meal in exchange for an honest review