“Desirable food below Chiltern beech woods” - AA Inspector
The wooded hills of the Chilterns, criss-crossed by bridleways and footpaths, form a constant horizon drifting above the rural location of this attractive old building. Just a stone’s throw away is the remarkable Maharaja’s Well at nearby Stoke Row, a bracing circular ramble from the inn. Bare brick and beams predominate in the airy interior, interspersed by alcoves and warmed by log-burning stoves in this much updated 16th-century inn, where contented regulars sup beers supplied from the nearby Loddon brewery. The menu is eclectic and strong on locally sourced raw materials. The speciality here is pies; chicken and mushroom bacon pie or game pie may tempt as a follow-up to a starter of crispy calamari with lime, chilli and coriander. Alternatively a bracing walk is well-rewarded with grilled sea bass, brown shrimps, market vegetables and saffron potatoes and herb butter, whilst the steaks are from the Royal Windsor Estate. A peaceful rear garden and suntrap terrace aid laid-back summer drinking.
- Children welcome
- Children's portions
- Free Wifi
- Closed: 2
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About the area
Located at the heart of England, Oxfordshire enjoys a rich heritage and surprisingly varied scenery. Its landscape encompasses open chalk downland and glorious beechwoods, picturesque rivers and attractive villages set in peaceful farmland. The countryside in the northwest of Oxfordshire seems isolated by comparison, more redolent of the north of England, with its broad views, undulating landscape and dry-stone walls. The sleepy backwaters of Abingdon, Wallingford, Wantage, Watlington and Witney reveal how Oxfordshire’s old towns evolved over the centuries, while Oxford’s imposing streets reflect the beauty and elegance of ‘that sweet city with her dreaming spires.’ Fans of the fictional sleuth Inspector Morse will recognise many Oxford landmarks described in the books and used in the television series.
The county demonstrates how the strong influence of humans has shaped this part of England over the centuries. The Romans built villas in the pretty river valleys that thread their way through Oxfordshire, the Saxons constructed royal palaces here, and the Normans left an impressive legacy of castles and churches. The philanthropic wool merchants made their mark too, and many of their fine buildings serve as a long-lasting testimony to what they did for the good of the local community.
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