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Grapes, Oxford

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user reviews of the Grapes, Oxford

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

The Grapes is located on one of Oxford's main shopping streets. But, it is currently closed for a refurbishment. A peak through the door revealed some West Berkshire keg fonts. But, we continued and replaced the Grapes with a visit to the Teardrop "nanopub" in Oxford's Covered Market. Run by the Church Hanbrewery, I recommend this whilst the Grapes remains closed.
blue_scrumpy - 13 Apr 2019 07:42
Reopened as The Grapes after a sorry few months as Beerd. Good and no sign of Bath Ales these days which would be a shame if it were not for the addition of some good ale choices - Magg's Magnificent Mild from West Berkshire is a fixture. One of central Oxford's better pubs.
BoehmBawerk - 3 Apr 2018 09:16
Sad to see so much of BITE taken over by bots (offering knockoff shoes, etc.) and reviews taking a back place. The Grapes was a decent place, but to allow unashamed HTML ads (for a closed pub) suggests that the BITE management ought to put in an HTML filter. Suck "junk" can only put people off.
HenPen - 24 Feb 2017 09:34
Now has its own listing under the Beerd name. Shameful name change, bowing to the current trend in hipster bullsh*t.
littledrummerboy - 14 Mar 2016 15:32
Someone from Bath Ales needs to be taken outside and shot. What the hell have they done to this once fine pub? "Beerd"? Give me strength Hopefully this embarrassing and faddish incarnation will not last long.
thomashenry - 24 Sep 2015 11:29
The Grapes is closed and currently undergoing somewhat of a transformation. The Grapes will re-open as Beerd (Oxford) and open its doors on Friday 18 September at 5pm.

(Above is taken from their website)

What a shame about the name change.
TiaMariaJim - 5 Sep 2015 09:54
Dissapointing pint of SPA, a bit tired. seem to be in the way everywhere you stand at the bar. Over rated.
pwilkins - 24 Nov 2014 12:37
Lovely pub. Well kept ales. Great barstaff. The food looked amazing, we will be dining there on our next visit to Oxford.

Also worthy of note is the range of merchandise from Bath brewery which is on sale.

Well worth a visit.
vicpark - 9 Oct 2014 01:12
Well-kept Bath ales as others have praised and on my recent visit a lovely guest Seven from the Bristol Beer Factory. Probably not a pub you would want to spend all night in but certainly good for a couple of drinks and a return visit.
yellowfever - 7 Oct 2014 19:27
Pass the big chain pubs all along George Street, with their menacing bouncers and vomiting hordes to seek out this little gem. Restored Victorian tiled interior and good selection of Bath Ales make this genuine pub well worth a visit.
Mike_Oxford - 6 Nov 2013 10:57
A top quality boozer that hits the right balance between authentic pub that you can swill a few with the lads in and an upmarket stop on a night out in town with the ladyfriend. Had one of the bath ale ciders, which was excellent. Food looked grsat, and staff very friendly. Not to be missed.
TommyRogers1979 - 24 Aug 2013 18:56
Lovely little pub in a perfect position for a pre-show drink opposite the New Theatre. The Bath ales were all in good condition and the Porter that was on was particularly good. The cider was good too according to my wife. Sadly, I noticed that they had an American IPA on tap just as we were leaving for the show, so didn't get to try it. The food looked good too. Will pop in again when we're in town.
littledrummerboy - 11 Dec 2012 17:36
A recent makeover has been relatively tastefully done although London Welsh's arrival in Oxford could lead to a worrying influx of hoorays (as if the city didn't have enough already). The triumph on our visit was the ales - really quaffable and well kept and food looked no nonsense and gargantuan. Oxford's city centre pubs are a mixed bag and hampered by crowds but this looks to have elevated itself to an option amid the better of them.
BoehmBawerk - 4 Sep 2012 11:13
Popped in yesterday to see what Bath Ales have made of the place. Certainly a lot brighter than it used to be but has a standard "corporate" feel to it.

Service was prompt and efficient (why do all Bath Ales staff wear aprons?) from the standard Bath Ales range. Prices are pretty high though for a pub owned by a small (ish) brewery - around 30p a pint more than the same beer in one of their pubs in Bath the previous day. Quality was fine though.

Food menu looked interesting but it wasn't sampled. Was pretty busy for a lunchtime.

There are better (and cheaper!) pubs in Oxford though.
cheshirecat - 2 Jun 2012 09:45
a bath ales house, truely a superb pub, food seemed to be doing well,as they were busy, selection of ale superb. go in.
tc_imbiber - 9 May 2012 22:24
This was for me at least never a 'must' during a pub-facing visit to Oxford, as it was a pleasant and traditional boozer but part of the average Greene King estate. I hadn't been in for at least 3 years but having spotted a sign which read "Bath Ales presents The Grapes" outside I felt it would be worthwhile giving it another chance, as Bath Ales are well-known to me and rarely am I disappointed by their beer or pubs. Happily this decision paid off, for the Grapes has undergone quite a identity shift.

Whilst the outward appearance remains more-or-less unaltered, and even the interior shell of the place is essentially the same, the rather dark and arguably oppressive bar area has been given a considerable makeover in typical light and airy Bath Ales style. The upper shelving has been removed entirely and the lower bar has been refitted in pine, now boasting 4 handpumps offering a range of BA cask products, alongside some more unusual offerings from the both brewery and elsewhere on tap. The Summer Hare at 3.9% was my first pint of the day and it went down swimmingly, despite it feeling like a cold day in March and being muffled up in an overcoat! The ale was in top condition and very refreshing; i didn't get a chance to sample the rest but I'd hazard a guess that they're in similar form.

The food looked decent enough although I was not in need of any victuallage so left that for another occasion. Service was swift and courteous on my visit - the bar manager was a very convivial and jolly chap who did his best to make people feel welcome as they approached the bar. The crowd was faily typically Oxfordian - i.e. a mix of genders and nationalties, with a leaning towards the younger, student-ish and business-like types, whose tables were just as likely to be occupied by laptops and books as well as glassware and plates. Still, a pleasant hubbub pervaded the civilised drinking and eating area, and all seemed to be well with the world.

Certainly this one has been ratcheted up the priority list for future drop-ins, and the rating advanced in accordance with the improvements Bath have undoubtedly made.
TWG - 9 May 2012 13:41
Sorry, that should be 2012 not 2010!
thomashenry - 23 Apr 2012 17:44
Taken over by Bath Ales as of April 2010. The interior has been given a makeover, and is now more upmarket (and in my opinion, more generic). The choice of beer is less good - only Bath Ales brews now. The prices are steep as well - £3.60 for a 4.5% bitter.

I can't help but feel a little disappointed that a genuine boozer has now become a fairly standard Gastro-type pub, but it's still not a bad place. Down from 8 to 6.
thomashenry - 23 Apr 2012 17:38
New Bath Ales pub, very much in their house style, which is a good thing. They've exposed some fine Victorian tilework which adds interest to the fairly minimalist decor. Full range of their own beers of course
Go on boys; allow a few guest beers here and there!
curioushistory - 27 Mar 2012 13:58
Only used lunchtime but seemed fine. Wood floor and fittings.
Food good. Thank goodness for the guest beers so that you can get away from the usual Greene King suspects.
rpf1955 - 27 Mar 2012 12:54
Fab little Pub, with 4 great Cask Ale's on at the time of my visit.
bitterboy1970 - 2 Nov 2010 08:38
One of the few "proper" pubs left in Oxford!
Dribbler - 13 Sep 2010 16:35
The Grapes has always been an interesting pub to visit for the ambiance, but has been missed out since the G.K takeover of Morrells due to the dullness of beer choice. But now the new Landlord has given his customers a decent choice of guest beers it becomes a real possibility for the Pub crawler. Lovely old pub in the theatre area with a decor that reflects this. Pleasingly comfortable.
imdownthepub - 28 Feb 2010 13:02
Was very busy when I visited on Friday evening. Friendly bar staff and a great range of guest beers. Well worth a visit!
Mothroy - 6 Dec 2009 19:44
The Grapes has always been a very solid city centre pub. It's long and thin, with a fairly traditional red hue, and a ceiling adorned with posters of past shows from the theatre opposite. For whatever reason, it is totally off the tourist trail (despite being as central as it's possible to be), and therefore is rarely uncomfortably full of tourists or students.

A recent change of tennancy has resulted in the beer policy changing - previously the beer was all GK (always well kept), but now up to three of the handpumps are guest beers, and some decent imaginitive stuff seems to be getting put on. This takes a solid 6/7 pub up to a 7/8. Well worth a visit.
thomashenry - 13 Nov 2009 15:09
Proper city centre pub , good choice of ale , i had a decent Exmoor Gold , and full of characters , barmaids friendly and efficient . Not one of Oxfords more well known pubs (no annoying yanks) but it should be .
trenchlad - 15 Oct 2009 15:17
The only real pub left in central Oxford, lovely welcome and cracking barmaids I love real ale and this place had the best selection in the area this is my new local, have not tried the food yet but it smells fantastic
mrfish - 10 Aug 2009 01:26
Seemed to slot in nicely en route to other, perhaps more renowned Oxfordian hosteleria. We found it to be the sort of pub that isn't exceptional by any measure and will never be as obvious a destination as some nearby competitors, but that is probably its charm. The Grapes is always worth a quick look in, especially as part of a larger crawl. Reliable GK beers including the slightly more interesting seasonal offering (Bonkers Conkers during September), equally friendly reception from the barman, and generally a solid local unaffected by city centre pretense. Keep on steering a steady course folks, and the punters should keep rolling in.
TWG - 8 Oct 2008 18:15
Proper city center boozer , good beer , friendly and varied locals , food looked ok [didnt eat] if i lived in oxford this would be one of my regulars .
oggwyn - 3 Oct 2008 21:41
Good well kept real beer and genuine home made grub
alewhale - 10 Apr 2007 10:05
I popped in for a quick pint but ended up staying for a few more as I really liked this pub. Like most good pubs there were various characters drinking here, from the Oxford professor to the toothless West Country labourer that I had some banter with.

The booze was great and the staff were professional. Whilst I was in there a group of 50 students came in for one of their pub crawl stop-offs and I was rueing the fact that I had not bought a drink before. Thankfully the barmaid had spotted that I had been in the pub for a while and was not part of the group and was served almost immediately, well done that girl!!

When Iím back in Oxford I will definitely make a point of revisiting this place again.

Strongers - 20 Feb 2007 17:27
Went here b4 going to a concert across the road so was naturally "wedged".Nice ale though.7/10
fat_beer_badger - 22 Dec 2006 20:22
Glad everyone on here seems to like this pub as much as I do. Thought it might go down the nick after Roly left but not a bit of it. Mark, Claire and Beth run a really great boozer. The varied clientele creates a great atmosphere, the beer is always superb, the food excellent and the service by the really friendly staff is also excellent. Looking forward to returning in February. I'm a fussy old sod when it comes to pubs but I'm giving it 10 out of 10.
annhalf - 27 Nov 2006 14:48
I lobve this pub and there is a great barmaid there called Beth who is a quality waitress! Great food too
anonymous - 7 Aug 2006 11:41
Old mans pub. Nice. Smoky. Long and thin. Last time I was there I spent the evening drinking Courvoisier with Amanda Barrie (formally of Coronation St.), it's often full of people from New Theatre just across the way. Great place. Big fan.
edb543 - 22 May 2006 11:01
The grapes is a fine place. haven't been there for a while now (my leaving do from Oxford started there), but some extremely fond memories.
quite a few americans, far too clever for their own good.
duncan - 17 Feb 2006 15:53
It's not just Oxford thesps who call this pub their own - was in there last Saturday and there was a good old crowd in there.

Beer was extremely drinkable, service was ok. One or two pissed punters but nothing out the ordinary.

I'd go back there for a pint.
brodie_bruce - 17 Feb 2006 15:31
This is the pub Oxford student thesps like to call their own.
anonymous - 6 Feb 2006 11:23

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