However, the emphasis is still in many ways on breakfast. The café is so far only open for dinner Thursday through Saturday, but for breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea every day of the week. The chips have gone completely and been replaced by fruit-based items such as homemade granola and blueberry pancakes. My companion and I went for brunch and ordered one small portion of the Oxford English breakfast and one kedgeree to share, with a caffetière of coffee and a small pot of the house tea respectively.The waitress was very friendly and helpful; the service was not slow but not remarkably quick or entirely flawless either. Both dishes were very tasty and nicely presented. The Oxford sausage was a particular high point of the traditional breakfast, but this reviewer would have preferred the fried egg slightly more delicate and soft. The haddock of the kedgeree was beautifully cooked and fitted in well with the creamy texture and mild curry taste of the dish.
The tea had noticably more character than standard brands, as did the coffee which was plentiful for the price. The portions of food were similarly generous, and we left the place feeling suitably full after a robust and wholesome meal.While some might worry about the demise of the classic greasy spoon, we found that the place had actually acquired a more distinctive character than before. Though new, it appears timeless. This small and charming café gives a great first impression that lasts. The lovely ambiance, along with carefully picked ingredients, friendly service and reasonable prices, are the main reasons why we are sure we’ll be coming back to try out the rest of their menu. The new St Giles’ Café has the potential of becoming a genuine Oxford institution in its own right.