While festive plans remain somewhat up in the air, Oxford's fabulous restaurants are doing everything in their power to give us something mouthwatering to look forward to in December. Book ahead to help these local businesses to plan during what has been a difficult year - in some cases, there's the added incentive of an early bird discount!
The combination of 16th-century architecture and 21st-century cuisine makes the experience at the White Hart rather special. Bookings are already filling up fast for their Christmas parties and spectacular 5-course Christmas Day blow out so don't delay! Book online.
The home of some of the best roasts in the county is a natural choice if you're after some perfectly cooked traditional turkey, elevated with some gourmet sides. With the Victorian venue decked out, you'll feel like you're in A Christmas Carol! Book online or call 01491 836068
Brasserie Blanc and the Black Horse in Thame.
Dreaming of a Blanc Christmas? Oxfordshire-based French chef Raymond Blanc's lovely venues promise a wonderful combination of classic British and French cuisine - which the Daily Info team have tried and tested, and we can say with confidence you'll be in good hands for a memorable celebration. At both Brasserie Blanc and The Black Horse, there's a special offer for early birds: if you book a table for 4-6 people for festive dining before 15th November, each guest will get a free glass of Prosecco! Don't forget to enter our giveaway competition to be in with a chance of getting £50 off your meal at the Black Horse...
The rich, cosy decor at foodie haven No1 Ship Street is bound to infuse you with festive spirit, and their Christmas offer is enough to make Scrooge smile. A whopping 5 courses are available in 3-hour long sittings, from £38.50 per person with the option to add extras like port and a champagne reception. To book, email [email protected] or call 01865806637
St Aldate's Tavern have a fun take with the option of a canapé course (breaded brie bites with cranberry sauce, anyone?!) and some creative veggie options alongside the traditional turkey-with-all-the-trimmings. They recommend booking an early table so you're not eating in a rush, due to the anticipated return of the 10pm curfew. Book online, phone 01865 241 185 or email [email protected]
If you've already overdone it on the traditional fare, why not go for something a bit different? Keeper's Kitchen offers a twist, with a festive afternoon tea in their seventeenth-century restaurant. Starting at £18, it includes a selection of mini sandwiches and desserts. Call 01865 248 332 or email [email protected] to book.
There's a surprising amount of space hidden inside this traditional inn, so that those following what the pub are calling the 'Yule of 6' can feel extra safe. Their festive offering will appeal to those who want to get in the party spirit but don't necessarily want a roast: they have lots of traditionally Christmassy flavours, mainly available in pizza form! Pigs in blankets on pizza sounds like a dream combination to us... Book online or call 01235 525 362
Can't wait 'til December?
While venues are only allowed to open for takeaways and deliveries, a number of restaurants have got creative, producing DIY kits so you can enjoy something a bit closer to the restaurant experience. Dodo Pubs are offering Pizza In The Post - vacuum packed versions of their signature dish, ready for you to pop in the oven. Daily Info favourite The Magdalen Arms haven't mentioned the C word yet, but the pub has transformed into a deli shop where you can stock up on their quality ingredients, as well as some ready meal versions of some of their most popular dishes, for you to finish off at home (both in the cooking and the eating!).
And Dirty Bones (which we recently visited, and loved!) have tapped into the appetite for remote fun: you can order their DIY Burger Kits for your own or multiple households. If you order for more than 10, you can even have a Zoom cook-off, where DB's head chef will talk you through some of his culinary secrets.