February 23, 2012 in Reviews
Oxford Drinking have, purely for your benefit, sampled the delights of the St Clements boozer
Oxford is a city teeming with history and heritage. Prime Ministers and poets alike have resided here over the centuries, and tourists flock to the centre – as we all know – in a constant stream during the summer months to take in the dreaming spires.
The Angel & Greyhound, however, prefers to be a stark contrast to Oxford’s heritage. On the approach to the pub you are greeted by old-school chalk boards detailing, among other things, how it must be the only pub in Oxford which the likes of Tolkien, C.S. Lewis and even Inspector Morse HAVEN’T been for a drink in.
And the first question you think of is: why not?
Be you in need of a sunny spot in the summer, or a cosy spot by the fire in the winter, the A&G will cater for your every need. It boasts an open fireplace and an array of chairs and tables of all different shapes and sizes, meaning there’s a cosy, homely feel to the pub. It can get pretty busy on Fridays and Saturdays, so get there early at weekends, but it always retains a chilled atmosphere, even when full.
You can indulge in bar billiards or one of the many board games on display (Connect 4 is always a good choice when drinking), take advantage of their free wifi, or try and fight off the temptation to purchase one of the tantalising pork pies on display at the end of the bar.
Run by Young’s brewery, you’ll usually find three or four draught ales at the A&G to suit your mood. Young’s Bitter (3.7% ABV) is a golden session ale. Slightly hoppy and aromatic, but not overpowering; it’s all too easy to sink three or four of these without any problems. Until you try standing up, that is.
Angel & Greyhound Gold (4.5% ABV) is a lighter, fruitier version of the bitter, which would suit a summer’s day on their terrace, not a chilly February evening, which is when your esteemed writer sampled it.
The final draught bitter is Young’s Special (4.5% ABV) which is amber coloured with possibly a ruby tinge to it, and has a strong fruity flavour where you get a good balance between the malt and the hops. May cause hangovers if drunk in plentiful amounts, however.
If you’re feeling more adventurous, you can try the Double Chocolate Stout (5.2% ABV) which has a silky texture but isn’t overly sweet; in fact there are bitter chocolate and coffee tones to it. General consensus, however, was that more than a pint would be hard work.
For the cider lovers the A&G offers Addlestones Cloudy Cider (5% ABV) which gives a great apple hit without burning the throat, or you could go for Thatcher’s Gold (4.8% ABV).
The A&G also boasts a decent selection of bottled ales, including the delightfully summery Waggledance (5.0% ABV) which has a wonderful honey aroma to it. Definitely another one to enjoy out in the sun.
You’ll never be short of a laugh with the amusing quotes on the chalk boards outside the A&G. Lewis, Tolkien and Morse obviously never made it past the plain when sampling the pubs of Oxford, which is a shame. Although it does mean more beer for us.