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“Trying Hard but Missing the Mark”

Portabello Restaurant Bar & Grill
Ranked #92 of 627 Restaurants in Oxford
Price range: $8 - $51
Cuisines: European, British, Grill, Contemporary
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups, Local cuisine, Special occasions, Business meetings, Families with children, Bar scene, Romantic
Dining options: Lunch, Brunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Late Night, Free Wifi, Full Bar, Highchairs Available, Outdoor Seating, Private Dining, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Description: A chic, cosmopolitan British restaurant bar and grill open from 9:30am all day every day serving great steak, fish dishes, classic burgers and more. Our menus change regularly with the season with our fixed price lunch menu changing weekly. We serve freshly prepared food with great British flavours in casual and relaxed surroundings. You'll find us in South Parade, a gorgeous little side road in Summertown, amongst trendy boutiques, galleries, wine bars and the North Wall Theatre. Come along for 'the best breakfast in town' from 9:30am 7 days a week and on Sundays come and enjoy a great selection of traditional roasts and superb sharing plates. Join us for Happy hour every week daily from 5:00pm to 7pm when all cocktails and champagne are £5! Let us treat you to a great fixed price menu available lunchtimes Monday to Friday - just £10.95 For two courses and £13.95 For three courses. Our children's menu is available every day and we have child friendly facilities. We can cater for parties of up to 100 guests with menus to suit. An impressive upstairs private dining area is available for all of your special occasions. Guests also benefit from our restaurant car park. Feel free to drop in for a glass of wine, coffee or a sweet treat at the bar or on the terrace. Reservations are welcome for anytime.
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
88 reviews
57 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
“Trying Hard but Missing the Mark”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 21, 2013

Went for dinner last week with a friend from Oxford. We arrived around 6:45 and the restaurant was pretty empty, although it did get busier later during the evening. The menu is fairly similar to most bar / bistros with not a lot of surprises. Food & service was average .... not bad but neither particularly great ..... so we suggest arriving with clear expectations. If looking for a special night out there must be better alternatives in Oxford.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Roger R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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389 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Witney, Oxon
Level Contributor
62 reviews
49 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Lovely Sunday lunch”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 20, 2013

We entered Portabello on a very wet Sunday lunchtime to the warmest of welcomes and a truly delightful lunch in store. Although it was extremely busy, nothing was too much trouble for the friendly,efficient staff. The food was delicious - our pork and beef roast dishes from the specials menu were worth every penny. Beautifully cooked and presented. the meat was succulent - the crackling with the pork was perfect (no mean feat!) and the vegetables looked and tasted exactly as they should without being overcooked. Our 6 year old granddaughters were made to feel welcome and they too ate every mouthful of their choices from the children's menu. An added bonus was the complimentary warm home-made bread.
The restaurant itself has a relaxed ambience despite obviously being very popular but everyone we observed appeared to be as happy with their meals as we were. Despite the fact there were several large parties of diners everyone was treated with same friendly courtesy by the hard-working staff. We would wholeheartedly recommend eating here to anyone for any occasion and look forward to returning.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank stephbWitney_Oxon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cold Norton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
23 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Lovely Evening”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 4, 2013

Excellent food, terrific service and wonderful atmosphere. Try a cocktail before dinner too - they are very good.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
Thank snevetska
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brighton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Great food with a few good veggie options, though a little pricey.”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 26, 2013

The finest thing about Portabello was its food. The ingredients were excellently sourced and prepared and the dishes were well presented. We ordered an entirely vegetarian menu, which we found to be imaginative and tasty, so we were very happy. However, some dishes were slightly verging on the edge of bland – e.g. the pine nut cakes or the globe artichoke salad and could have benefited from a chilli sauce or lemony dressing. Other dishes, namely the chicory tart and classic blue cheese and fig combination easily made up for these deficits.
The desserts were really worth trying – we had the pavlova and warm gingerbread with coconut ice cream. Both were wonderful. The former was huge but I still managed to eat it! The dairy used in each of them was really excellent and we felt that these were high quality in-house desserts.
The drinks menu is quite extensive, if a little pricey (as were the olives). I enjoyed an elderflower with mint and soda while my partner had a merlot. We also had water throughout the meal.
The only down side (and some people wouldn’t consider it a negative) was that the staff didn’t ask us if everything was ok. This was unusual for this type of restaurant, but as we had no complaints it didn’t really matter. The staff were largely friendly and they were also very helpful when we were choosing where to sit and again when working our way through the menu.
In terms of location, it’s well situated and the restaurant itself is very comfortable and clean (the bathrooms are lovely despite a cobweb I noticed on the ceiling). All in all, we had a wonderful evening meal and hope to return.

  • Visited September 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank MarthaAppleCity
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Huddersfield, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
64 reviews
40 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“Reliable restaurant.”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 24, 2013 via mobile

Always a good meal and the atmosphere is buzzing but not usually too noisy. Specials board worth a look and great fish dishes. Can eat anything from posh burger, great fish and chips ( although I personally hate it served on a wooden board- plates please) or delicate seafood. Price what you would expect in Summertown/Oxford. Took 2 guests here two weeks running and they were both impressed.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
Thank Janet D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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