If you didn’t know by now, I am an Oxford girl born and bred. I am also a bit of a brunch fanatic. Saying ‘brunch?’ to me is a bit like saying ‘walkies?’ to your dog. I’ll be there scratching at the door before you can finish your sentence. And in my nearly 21 years of living here, I have definitely ate through my fair share of brunches in the city of dreaming spires. But when looking through google searches, there’s not much in the way of guides to good food spots in Oxford. Or many guides to Oxford at all for that matter. So of course, I thought I’d share the best places to grab brunch in Oxford. From the eye of a local.
This is a mix of both independent places in Oxford, to give you that true authentic feel. But also a few chain places, most of which are located in the Westgate shopping centre and are a little more convenient and still very yummy!
Just a side note: I would highly recommend downloading the Dealer app. It gives you loads of discounts and offers for restaurants in Oxford and can be super handy to save you a few pennies! For 10 bonus points when signing up, use my code EMILYM37 when you first check in. Not an ad, just helping y’all out.
Right, onto the brunches!
Dirty Bones is an NYC inspired restaurant serving a selection of comfort food and signature cocktails. It has a comfy, 70’s vibe with a retro-modern styled interior. It was like I was inside my Pinterest board for my future home, I was obsessed. And ever since I heard it had come to Oxford I wanted to visit, and I was not disappointed.
A well as the whole atmosphere being great and the staff being super lovely, the food was, quite like they describe, true comfort food. I went with the butter milk pancakes and Zeb went with the Salmon crumpets accompanied by a few cocktails. And it was just what we both needed that Sunday. I will write a separate guide to cocktail bars soon, which I’ll add more about their drinks then. However I will say they were very unique flavours and, for a boozy brunch. Worked perfectly. Highly recommend the Mutts Nutts cocktail.
This is definitely one for celebration brunches or getting lots of people together for. You can just get a regular brunch (ours came to £17 excluding the drinks). Or book yourselves in for a 1.5 hour slot and have a bottomless cocktail brunch for £22pp. Pick your poison and tuck in!
GEORGE STREET SOCIAL
As you step into George Street Social, you’re welcomed by a quirky interior and some very impressive literary stairs. Inspired by the spines of books, but with an alcoholic twist. Tequila Mockingbird, a classic. As well as being one of my favourite places to grab coffee and crack on with some work if I have a spare few hours in Oxford. It’s definitely one of the top places for brunch. I would highly recommend the smashed avocado (which is only £5.50 – whatta bargain). They also do a bottomless prosecco brunch which, we can just say left me feeling a little on the fragile side after. However I would definitely recommend if you like a bit of bubbly!
THE HANDLEBAR CAFE
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The cutest little cafe situated above a bike shop on St. Michaels street. And a favourite across a lot of Oxford locals. With it’s beautiful spacious interior it’s definitely the spot to tuck yourself away for an hour or two to crack on with some work. They also have some really good veggie and vegan options on the menu (coconut pancakes are the one). But there are still all the classic brunch options like avo toast, a full English or porridge. And prices range from about £4-£9 which is super good, this spot pops up a lot on the Dealer app too so definitely check there for some discounts!
THE BREAKFAST CLUB
I was very excited to give The Breakfast Club a try, as I’ve heard such great things about the one in London. And if you’re looking for some hearty, hangover curing food and a fun atmosphere, this is the place. I’ve been here a few times now, and both times I’ve had the pancakes and berries with a big mug of tea to wash it down. It came to around £12, which makes The Breakfast Club a little more expensive however if you take a look at these portion sizes you definitely get a lot for your money. I was very much defeated by those pancakes both times. However for some good grub on a weekend morning with your pals, I would definitely recommend heading to this little slice of the 80’s.
TURL STREET KITCHEN
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This a definitely a fave amongst the students and locals of Oxford. It’s a good spot for healthy, veggie and vegan options and it serves some of the best coffee around. Their mushroom and red pepper breakfast bun or their fruit bowl with coconut yoghurt are a must if you’re looking for a healthy, tasty and filling brekkie or brunch. And prices start at £4.50 so you can’t go wrong! They do also offer a prosecco brunch for anyone looking for somewhere to celebrate, or just to go for a boozy brunch.
VAULTS & GARDEN
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Being sat right next to the Radcliffe Camera, this is definitely a good spot for visitors who want a brunch with a view. It’s be a great spot for Spring and Summer as they have seating outside. They serve a lot of standard bits – scrambled eggs on toast, a full English and a slightly fancy cheese on toast. They also have a few veggie and vegan options!
So this post is making me very hungry. And I could go on about this lovely city and the fab brunch spots it has to offer. But I think these 6 will do it justice. I’m hoping to carry these guides on and do a few more in the coming months so keep an eye out!