Archive for the ‘Headington’ Tag

Starfish Fish N Chips, Bremen, Germany, Chippy Challenge #70   1 comment

Star Food Fish N Chips Bremen Germany yum


[The Chippy Challenge: to eat more fish and chips in 2014; see original post for details.]

Fish: cod
Sides: chips and slaw
Evaluation: Starfish (recently renamed Star Food but having both signs up) yielded some of the best fish and chips I’ve had this year.  They wanted to put mayo or chilli sauce on the chips and I only knew the Dutch for vinegar and eventually the lead guy ran over to a table and grabbed a bottle.  More of a kebab stand, this was truly better than I expected.
Days since last: 3 (Happy Seafood, Amsterdam)
Map link.

Star Food Fish N Chips Bremen Germany

Odd synchronicity with Headington here in Bremen…have to wonder if the 5th Bremen Musician is a shark:

shark wall bremen

Monthly consolidations/compilations: January

Last look back at 2012 Challenge   3 comments

100beer challenge squares

The previous post was better, but I wanted to showcase the screensavers pieced together by Squeezin’ (with my gratitude for these).  The pics, in order, are

Venue Where beer #
The Princess Hotel (done around 5 am New Year’s Day)  Swindon 1
The Bank House  Cheltenham 2
At the New Year’s Races in Cheltenham (watching my nag drag in)  Cheltenham 3
Midlands Hotel  Cheltenham 4
The Queen’s Tap  Swindon 5
The Four Candles  Oxford 6
The Turf Tavern (at the sign commemorating Clinton failing to inhale there)  Oxford 7
The White Horse  Oxford 8
O’Neill’s  Oxford 9
Ellington’s  Swindon 10
The Red Lion  Oxford 11
The Gloucester Arms  Oxford 12
Eurobar  Oxford 13
The Volunteer  Faringdon 14
The Red Lion  Faringdon 15
The Bell  Faringdon 16
The Lamb and Flag  Oxford 17
The Bird and Baby  Oxford 18
Far  The Madding Crowd  Oxford 19
Southbrook Inn  Swindon 20
The White Hart  Wolvercote, Oxfordshire 21
The Red Lion  Wolvercote, Oxfordshire 22
The Plough  Oxford 23
The Gardener’s Arms  Oxford 24
The Rose and Crown  Oxford 25
TP’s  Swindon 26
The De’s Cut  Oxford 27
The King and Queen  Longcot, Oxfordshire 28
The Woodman Inn  Fernham, Oxfordshire 29
The Eagle  Little Cocks Swell, Oxfordshire 30
The Wheatsheaf  Faringdon, Oxfordshire 31
Faringdon Folly  Faringdon, Oxfordshire 32
Salisbury Cathedral  Salisbury 33
The King’s Arms  Salisbury 34
The Old Castle Pub  Salisbury 35
The keep at Old Sarum  Salisbury 36
Wheatsheaf  Lower Woodford, Wiltshire 37
Bridge Inn  Upper Woodford, Wiltshire 38
Black Horse  Great Durnford, Wiltshire 39
Wilsford Cum Lake sign (heh, heh)  Wiltshire 40
Stonehenge (really a great disappointment)  Wiltshire 41
King’s Arms  Amesbury, Wiltshire 42
George Hotel  Amesbury, Wiltshire 43
New Inn  Amesbury, Wiltshire 44
The Greyhound  Amesbury, Wiltshire 45
Royal Oak  Oxford 46
The Red Lion  Marston, Oxfordshire 47
The Angel and Greyhound  Oxford 48
The University Club  Oxford 49
The GW Hotel  Swindon 50
Jude the Obscure  Oxford 51
The Victoria  Oxford 52
The Rickety Press  Oxford 53
Wahoo Sport Bar  Oxford 54
The Oxford Retreat  Oxford 55
The Grapes  Oxford 56
The Rolleston  Swindon 57
The Baker’s Arms  Swindon 58
The Dolphin  Swindon 59
Marsh Farm Hotel  Royal Wootton Bassett 60
The Cross Keys  Royal Wootton Bassett 61
The Old School  Oxford 62
The King’s Arms  Oxford 63
The Swan and Castle  Oxford 64
The Victoria Arms  Marston, Oxfordshire 65
The Black Swan  Abingdon, Oxfordshire 66
The Blue Boar  Abingdon, Oxfordshire 67
The Bowyer Arms  Radley, Oxfordshire 68
Zen Bar  Swindon 69
Sir Daniel Arms  Swindon 70
White Hart  Lyneham, Wiltshire 71
Sodom  Wiltshire 72
The Angel  Royal Wootton Bassett, Wiltshire 73
Cape of Good Hope  Oxford 74
Rudi’s  Swindon 75
Burn’s Day Lunch (Haggis, Neeps, Tatties, Whisky, and 2 beers)  Oxford 76
Swindon Wildcats 3, Sheffield Steeldogs 4 (SO)  Swindon 77
The Longwall  Oxford 78
The Royal George  Purton, Wiltshire 79
Riff’s Bar  Greatfield, Wiltshire 80
Magic Roundabout  Swindon 81
The Three Tuns  Wroughton 82
The Havana  Swindon 83
The Lydiard  Swindon 84
The Savoy  Swindon 85
The Brewer’s Arms  Cirencester 86
The White Horse  Woolstone 87
The College Farm  Watchfield 88
The Horse and Jockey  Ashton Keynes, Gloucestershire 89
The Vale Hotel  Cricklade 90
Goldfinger Tavern  Highworth, Wiltshire 91
The Red Lion  Northmoor, Oxfordshire 92
The Bell Inn  Standlake, Oxfordshire 93
The Maybush  Newbridge, Oxfordshire 94
The Beehive (this is about 100 yards from the house we are moving to)  Swindon 95
Baker Street  Swindon 96
Steam Railway Company Pub  Swindon 97
The Pig on the Hill  Swindon 98
Long’s Bar  Swindon 99
near Parliament, with a Cuban cigar and a bunch of dirty looks (and after 5 pub stops)  London Marathon 100
The Bear  Oxford 101
The Old Tom  Oxford 102
The Crown  Oxford 103
The Beehive  Carterton, Oxfordshire 104
The Crown Inn  Faringdon, Oxfordshire 105
Romany Inn  Bampton, Oxfordshire 106
Talbot Hotel  Bampton, Oxfordshire 107
The George Inn  Sandy Lane, Wiltshire 108
The White Hart  Calne, Wiltshire 109
The now defunct King George  Calne, Wiltshire 110
Barrington Arms  Shrivenham, Oxfordshire 111
Groves Company Inn  Swindon 112
Revolution  Swindon 113
The Plough  Sutton Courtenay, Oxfordshire 114
The George and Dragon  Sutton Courtenay, Oxfordshire 115
The Fish  Sutton Courtenay, Oxfordshire 116
Great Western Railway Staff Association  Didcot, Oxfordshire 117
The Prince of Wales  Didcot, Oxfordshire 118
Tap and Barrel (good read goes along with this pic)  Swindon 119
Old Town Festival  Swindon Town Gardens 120
Cock Inn  Combe, Oxfordshire 121
Three Horseshoes  Long Hanborough, Oxfordshire 122
Swindon Pride 2012  Swindon (duh) 123
Wernham Hogg’s  Slough, Berkshire 124
The Myrtle Grove  Risca, Gwent, Wales 125
The Sirhowy  Blackwood, Gwent, Wales 126
Railway Tavern  Sirhowy, Blaenau Gwent, Wales 127
The Castle  Bryn Serth, Blaenau Gwent, Wales 128
The Coach and Horses  Ashvale, Blaenau Gwent, Wales 129
Ye Olde Red Lion Hotel  Tredegar, Blaenau Gwent, Wales 130
The Tumble Inn  Pontypridd, Wales 131
The Maltster’s Arms  Pontypridd, Wales 132
Wyvern Theatre  Swindon 133
Byron’s Bar  Swindon 134
The Bear Hotel  Wantage, Oxfordshire 135
Source ot the River Thames  Kemble, Gloucestershire 136
Carpenter’s Arms  Lacock, Wiltshire 137
Mill House  Chippenham, Wiltshire 138
Sunny’s Pool Bar  Swindon 139
The Royal Oak  Marlborough, Wiltshire 140
The Lamb Inn  Marlborough, Wiltshire 141
The Crown  Marlborough, Wiltshire 142
IMS/TOF Mass Spectrometer  Oxford University 143
New Year’s Eve on Ferndale Road  Swindon 144

100beer challenge 16x9s

The Crown and Thistle, Headington, Oxfordshire   2 comments

I’ve tried to hit the Crown and Thistle for a lunch beer occasionally as it is 4 miles from the lab and mostly uphill to get to (thus a mostly downhill return, so just about the perfect size and shape lunch run), but during the work week it opens late in the afternoon.  However, having topped Shotover Hill on my return from post-workweek lubrication at the Cricketer’s I was greeted with open doors (they open at noon on Friday, a point that has eluded me in the past).

This is a rather remote section of Headington, with the Old Road narrowing on its way to a virtual dead end at the top of the Hill, and things get a bit quieter out this way.  According to the Headington History website I find useful from time-to-time, this building has been here as a pub since the early Victorian era and there has been some sort of Inn or Ale House here since the 17th century or so when the Old Road was the only way to London.  What you actually find there is some grating disco music piped in a bit loudly but otherwise a very friendly management team.

Two, count 'em, two Aunt Sally pits

My first impressions were not so generous, but I am spoilt by the quality of the Southbrook and the Dolphin in my own crap neighbourhood.  I soon came around, though, when I spotted another pair wary customers.  They were there with what I assume was his daughter and her sister, obviously a regular client; she was trying to show off the place a bit (“see…bouncy castle!  The kids love it, they’ll inflate that later!”) but the old dude seemed dubious (twelve security cameras trained on you might do that).  As the afternoon passed, though, I began to see them relax and settle in to the venue.

The Ampleforth Arms, Headington, Oxfordshire   Leave a comment

I’m at a loss…no smarmy comments, no funny stories, just a very copacetic pint at a fine example of a pre-war pub.  The Ampleforth Arms is a fantastic house and it is all down to the people.  Okay, I’m judging just by the landlady but as it was just the two of us in there we had time to talk a bit; a good publican alone counts for about 90% of a bar’s success in my book but she raved about the community spirit of the estate, knew lot’s of details of the pub’s history (built in the 30’s, one of C.S. Lewis’ haunts, etc), and was simply a genuinely friendly and interesting (and interested, I might add) character.  If I set a trail for the Oxford hash this autumn, it will be out of this house.

It is a Punch Tavern but the tie to Punch leaves the publican with a few more choices than a lot of other services. The ales on choice today were Brakspears and Bombardier (which, I’m informed, is a favourite of the punters); the Brakspear pump changes frequently but there is an extra one so it seems there is always the possibility of a third way.  Just off the London Road…go have a beer and see for yourself how fine it is.

The Royal Standard, Headington, Oxfordshire   1 comment

It was pissing down rain all of a sudden but had been doing so off-and-on since the night before and it was blind optimism that a run might be completed during a break in the weather.  The Royal Standard seemed a good choice for a hideout to me, as it did to about a dozen builders who appeared to have been staying dry here all afternoon.

There were a couple of ales on offer but I was in a lager mood and got a Carlsberg which turned out to be fairly cheap, as well. The boisterous crowd kept to themselves which was fine; one guy was giving me the stare, y’know, like “I’d kick your arse if I could get up off this chair, y’poof,” but overall they seemed harmless. The bartenders, a black man about my age (couldn’t make the accent so I think he might have grown up here) and a pretty young woman who also, surprisingly, appeared to be English, were cool and friendly.  The fairly familiar food menu doesn’t really warrant another visit; there are drinks specials on little stand up adverts on the tables that imply crowds of amateur drinkers arrive in the evening.

Posted 2011/08/05 by Drunken Bunny in pubs, running

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The Fairview Inn, Headington, Oxfordshire   Leave a comment

The run to the Crown and Thistle was fine except the Crown and Thistle doesn’t open till 3 Monday thru Thursday.  My options were to go over Shotover Hill (in which case I would need to catch the bus back to work) or to explore the neighbourhoods a bit and hope for the best.  I decided to give it until 45 minutes into the run then head back to the office; at 44 minutes I spotted the Fairview Inn up a small hill and dashed up to see if it was open.

The barkeeper had a sour personality but that is not to say he was unfriendly, just generally grumpy.  In chatting about the decline of pubs I got the distinct feeling that he blamed it all on immigrants (not me or my kind, but, you know, those sort with weird religions that don’t allow them to drink).  This dilution of the culture is the real problem with the decline in pubs and although I don’t agree with the not-so-subtle racist undertones I do find this a more compelling argument than, say, “the smoking ban done it.”

As I prepared to leave he gave me fairly good directions for a traffic free run back to the labs, too.  It’s fairly quiet in the pub midday during the week and he has well kept real ales on the pumps…you should drop by and say howdy.  I had a delicious ETB (Extreme Thirst Buster) ale that was 4%, dark, slightly flavoured like chocolate and oak, and very refreshing for only £2.

Posted 2011/08/03 by Drunken Bunny in pubs, running

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The Butcher’s Arms, Headington, Oxfordshire   3 comments

Motto: "God gives us all things"

A lot of folks are away on holiday and many of the others think it is too hot to be outside (which is to say, it is 28C/82F, sunny, about 40% humidity…essentially a mild spring day).  With the streets likely to be abandoned, the running opportunity was irresistible and a trot up to Headington and around the rolling hills near the old quarries was planned.  Noting the time and that the few pubs I have never visited in this area were close to closing for the afternoon, I dashed to the Butchers Arms only to arrive 5 minutes before closing.  Shit…but nothing ventured nothing gained, eh? I went in and asked if there was time for a quick one.

I’m not a big fan of blondes in general but the landlady was awesome and set me up with a pint and some cheerful conversation about the pub while she polished the brass.  Had I been a very young man I could easily have gotten the smell of Brasso confused with quite a bit more erotic goings on; as it happened, though, my mind is quite filthy enough, thank you, and I tried desperately to focus on genteel chat but somehow or other kept wandering off to strange areas like Chess Boxing and the like.  She’s quite nice, keeps the place as much like a proper local as you could hope, and keeps your ale pump shiny (five ales to choose from).

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