Crazy décor includes man in bath. They offer drinks of all kinds and snack foods including pizza.
Opening hours: 10am - 11pm . Free range eggs in their breakfasts. Wheelchair friendly.
Free Range products Free range eggs in their breakfasts.
Gluten Free available. Cuisine: American, Fish & Italian / Pizza.
Children welcome, Food served & Cocktails
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Latest venue reviews
Good terrace but they don't have soya milk which means that as a vegan I cannot have my usual coffee there. Not very good for vegan diet generally speaking.
popetinolate (Unverified), 03/08/12
Decent quality, but they rush you away quickly (take your cup away almost from your mouth) and won't substitute items. If you don't want e.g. goats cheese on your pizza but would prefer mushrooms, you have to pay for mushrooms on top of the regular price, also paying for the goats cheese you did not have!
On Friday night I visited Cafe Coco on the Cowley Road. First time I'd eaten out since being diagnosed as a coeliac. I took my dietitian's advice - and called first.
Top marks to Cafe Coco: they knew about Gluten Free (GF) diets, advised on menu items that were GF and (despite it not being policy on a Friday night) reserved us a table for four people.
It was just as good when we arrived: a table waiting, more menu items highlighted and a lack of fuss and worry (which meant I didn't feel like a troublemaker).
At least one in a hundred people is a coeliac and many more are now avoiding gluten for health reasons. If you're planning on a visit: suitable items include Greek salad, salmon salad, garlic potatoes and prawns.
JoVanessa (DI User), 27/11/11
I love Coco's. I've been many, many times. Excellent atmosphere, excellent service and excellent food. Pizzas and salads are both interesting and tasty- not your normal 'American Hot' and 'Salad Nicoise' here... far more interesting options. Altogether excellent. Recommended.
Steve B (Unverified), 07/11/10
Beware of the misleading sign advertising a full-English for £4.95 on weekends - even though the special runs m - f, it's not clearly labelled and they insist on dragging out the chalkboard on weekends to lure people in. When I complained about being charged £6.95, the waitress explained politely and patiently - although it seemed very much as though I was not the first person to have been misled and irritated by the bill.
The breakfast itself was so-so - worth a fiver for sure, but certainly not what we paid. The black pudding was dry and crumbly, the mountain of bacon was extremely salty, the cumberland sausage was devoid of flavour, and the winter tomato was so mealy and pale that it probably wasn't worth serving. On a more positive note, the portions were pretty massive - except for our tea. Rather than a pot of assam, we were given tiny glass teacups with individual bags for £1.75 a pop.
I thought this place was nice, trendy, good service etc. It's not cheap if that's what some people expected, but I am prepared to pay to enjoy the ambience & food in there... simple.
naz (DI User), 13/03/10
Have eaten here twice and with mixed results. The first time was a quiet mid-week night, party of four. Good service and very tasty food with the garlic bread, mozzarella, chorizo & chillies being a new delight and the pumpkin & gorgonzola pasta extremely good. Assorted pizzas very nice although the merguez pizza was a little disappointing as the meat was barely spicy at all - on the whole though a very good dinner.
Last night (party of 8 on a Saturday) was a little poor. The garlic bread was like cardboard. Someone had shown it the garlic but little else flavour wise and a dollop of taatziki couldn't revive it - how can anywhere screw up garlic bread?! The kedgeree was heavy going and may well have been cooked fresh but tasted like they had a vat of the stuff that my portion was simply ladled out of. Haddock was in evidence but in a tiny amount and overwhelmed by other flavours. In all fariness the pizzas were very good, as were desserts but for some of the group it was a mixed bag - service was OK though.
One to keep an eye on. Hope this was just an off experience but if I have another one it'll be placed on the banned list
Ben (Unverified), 24/01/10
Coco's rocks - it was and remains my favourite place to eat in Oxford. Never mind eat, just to sit around and drink beer. Pizzas are cheap, service is great (massive influxes of customers notwithstanding). Come along, relax and take your time.
Al (Unverified), 04/09/09
Cocos is a quirky bar/restaurant and it's great ! You relax as soon as you enter the door. I recomend it 100% !
Rose (Unverified), 28/06/09
We arrived on a busy Saturday night, having already found other places full, and were grateful to be shown to a table at once. The reason why Coco is seldom my first choice is, simply, the noise. The bright young things do get awfully vocal in there, and I hate having to shout across the table. But on this occasion, curiously, the volume dropped almost as soon as we arrived, which was splendid.
We skipped starters and shared a couple of mains, Merguez, and Red Pesto Penne. The pasta was hot in its dish, reasonably generous and creamy and tasty without being exceptional. The Merguez, served with cous cous, salad and a cooling dollop of Tzatziki, were really rather good. Spicy without being overly hot, an impressive density counteracting their apparent smallness, and properly complemented by their accompaniments. Nice.
For dessert we chose Waffles and Pecan Pie, and were fully satisfied on both counts. Waffles had all the right things on them, and the pie was not too sweet and came with ice cream that was good in its own right. Nothing out of this world again, but no complaints at all.
With a cocktail, a peppermint tea, and a thoroughly decent bottle of red, the total was £48 for two. Which would be a wee bit above the mark, were it not for the excellent service. Our waitress was faultless, coping with a degree of initial indecision, contradictory messages from the kitchen about what was still available, and frankly appalling dithering about cocktails on our part, while remaining patient and cheerful in a way that wasn’t at all artificial.
Such a busy place can never please everyone all the time, but you can be pretty confident that it will be friendly and never below a certain general standard, which, I think, explains why Coco’s remains so popular.
Su Jordan (DI Staff), 10/10/08
I'm surprised that some people have had a bad time at Coco's: I've been eating and drinking there since it first opened and have never had a bad meal or duff bottle of wine and only one poor waiting experience in all that time, which covers literally dozens of visits.
In my experience, their pizzas are good value and other things vary - some are a bit pricey, some not. I don't think of it as an expensive meal out, though - I guess it depends where you tend to eat. I also like that it seems like good food with fresh, healthy ingredients.
Different expectations, perhaps?
Hazel (Unverified), 29/05/08
I'm afraid I totally disagree with the review directly below. I found Coco's to be horrifically overpriced for what I consider to be not only a lame effort in taste (bland, bland, bland) but also in terms of presentation (shoddy), atmosphere (dull) and service (rude). How can you get a pizza so wrong, and then charge the earth for it is beyond me. A little lesson in professionalism and providing value and quality of food and service is much needed here.
rinsed (Unverified), 06/02/08
I'm sorry to say that I (and my family) found the food mediocre, unadventurous (i.e. boring), made someone with a heavy-hand on portion control and utterly overpriced.
I ordered a ciabatta with roasted vegetables and it was tiny. The "roasted vegetables" were almost all onions.
I might even say...outrageous.
disgusted (Unverified), 23/01/08
I have been going as an individual, had the first meal with my now wife and regularly eat there with my wife and 5y old daughter. It is the only place in Oxford that we regularly return to for the last 10 years. Family friendly and good value.
In that time CoCo has served about 4 duff meals. Each time they have been poilte and courteous and compensated us more than fairly.
It is always great value, the staff are friendly and it is our pop-in place of choice.
Warning - it changes after about 8pm into a groovy, noisy & trendy drinking establishment. Not good for a quiet night out then!
Dom (Unverified), 14/08/07
Three of us ventured into Cafe Coco for the first occasion yesterday lunchtime. Having heard very mixed reports from a variety of people, i wasn't sure what to expect, but was pleasantly surprised. For £40 we had 3 pizzas, 2 salads, 3 puddings and 3 soft drinks. Very good value. The pizzas were a reasonable size and had a sensible amount of good quality interesting toppings on them - prawns, feta, tsatzaki, egg (at least 2/pizza), spicy meats, sesame seeds are among the more unusual fare. All the pizzas are £6, which i think is very reasonable. The salads we had were also someone different from the norm, including rocket, tasty tomato (not the standard palid pinkish lumps), chickpeas, peppers and a decent homemade dressing.
We didn't sample any of the starters or other main meals, but looking around it seemed that the burgers were a popular choice and seemed well recieved, but I would say most of the "light bites" and starters are probably not worth it.
Pudding wise, there is a choice of about 6 options, of which we had 1 pineapple "surprize" +ice cream, lemon torte and a waffle with ice cream and maple syrup. All were homemade, good quality and utterly delicious. I would highly recommend any of them.
Overall we were very pleased with our experience at Cafe coco, the only negative aspect being the very odd "clowns" sitting a bath that seem to be the main decorative feature of the bar. We thought they were rather disturbing and not really at one with the family friendly atmosphere.
Becky (Unverified), 24/06/07
I found Cafe Coco to be quite over-rated as the meal I had there with a couple of friends was really nothing special for the price we paid and I found our waitress a bit surly. Cocktails were more expensive than average. It was packed with fellow diners even though we weren't eating until 9-ish, at least I think it was as the lamps re-defined soft mood lighting. May take torch if I go back!
Joe B (Unverified), 14/03/07
Situated at the bottom of the Cowley Road, Café Coco’s chocolate box exterior immediately makes it stand out. The intriguing décor doesn’t stop there, and as you enter this small, cosy and yet still ‘cool’ restaurant-cum-bar you are confronted by the notorious bathing clown, amongst other oddities. But the fascinating and alluring designs of Café Coco are only some of a very long list of reasons for visiting; the food is some of the best Oxford has to offer, with a choice ranging from Mediterranean inspired dishes to pizzas with a twist; even the usual ‘cheese and tomato’ is made with feta cheese and REAL tomatoes! There’s also the option of creating your own combination if you can’t find anything to suit you- an unlikely situation, Café Coco providing a huge variety of foods for all tastes. To compliment all this, the venue sports one of the best drinks menus of Oxford’s restaurants, including many legendary cocktails- well worth trying, despite the £5 price tag.
Unfortunately it’s not the cheapest evening out; the price of a main course ranges from about £7-£15, with dessert adding an extra £4-£5 onto the bill. This said, the quality of the food here is well worth paying for, and the undeniable popularity of both the restaurant and bar only goes to prove that many others agree.
So if you fancy some gorgeous and ‘different’ food in fun, friendly, relaxed surroundings, whether it’s with a group of friends or a more intimate occasion, then a trip to Café Coco is definitely worth it.
Amy (Unverified), 12/12/05
I've passed by Café Coco on Cowley Road many times, hungry, but not in the mood for boring café fare such as soups and sandwiches. What a mistake! Café Coco is full of surprises, the most exciting of which is that it's not just a café. Beyond coffee and tea, it also features some unusual (and unusually good!) food, and an amazing list of drinks.
Strolling in late Thursday night, I was surprised that the place was buzzing with an equal number of diners and drinkers. The posh bar takes up the centre of the room, and I was tempted to head there for a Mai Tai – I'm from Hawaii, and they're hard to find in Oxford! Cocktails are about 5 pounds, which is a bit steep, but you get more than a drink at Coco – you're also paying for the warm, romantic and yet edgily artistic scene. Your beer, for example, will be quite cold, since it comes from a large sculpture of a mannequin sitting in a bathtub filled with ice.
Since I was with my mom, I promised the bar a visit next time. The dining tables are set up against the walls or front windows and are attractively intimate. Coco is a great place for dates: it's pretty warm when full of people, and dark. Except, of course, for the soft, golden candlelight that gently illuminates each table.
The menu boasts sophisticated pizzas, Greek-inspired starters and salads, and a few other random but fascinating meals. To start, we tried the dolmas, which are spicy brown rice rolls in pickled-tasting vine leaves, served with very smooth tzatziki. At £4.50 for four small pieces, it's a bit pricey, but the taste is worth it. We also shared an English Breakfast Pizza, because it doesn't have cheese and my mom is lactose-intolerant. The waitress was kind enough to tell us that the "black pudding" normally included on the pizza is "nasty," and so we declined the scary, mushy mix of cow insides. Besides, the pizza, decked out with bacon, sausages, free-range egg, mushrooms and tomatoes, was perfect for two ladies to share. Most pizzas are 8 pounds, and far surpass the ennui-inducing pizzas from other, plebeian institutions. Where else could you get Prawn Saganaki pizza with king prawns and feta?! The menu is astonishingly innovative. I was tempted to try the Wasabi Roasted Salmon just because it sounded cool.
For students on a budget and a bizarre schedule, Coco's late afternoon/early dinner offer sounds great. Between 3:30 and 6:30 pm Monday – Friday, and 9:30 to 11 pm on Sunday, you can get two pizzas for the price of one!
I can't think of any real drawback to Coco Café, except for that you might feel it's a bit too cool for the likes of you. So dress smart and maybe even venture to ask someone cute along. It's definitely
worth the risk.
Lindsay Oishi (Unverified), 19/08/04
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