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The Rose & Crown, Summertown, Oxford

14 North Parade Avenue

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Reviews (Current Rating Average: 8 of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

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Tris C left this review about The Rose & Crown

An excellent largely eclectic traditional pub in Summertown, one of Oxford's most desirable residential areas and visited for the first time as part of our PuG tour in July 2016, but since revisited several times.
Well described below, the staff are friendly and the pub has a very courteous old-school landlord now owner (Andrew), since 1983. Lavatories, which have certainly seen better days, are the outhouse variety which is traditional and there's a garden with a retractable gazebo roof, intertwined with a flourishing grape vine. On one Sunday visit, an acoustic guitar and mandolin band piped up at gone 10.30 and I've since learnt that the pub has a Sunday to Thursday 12.00 am licence with a 1.00 am licence on Fridays and Saturdays - outstanding, a pub where people are treated like adults! Note though: last entry is 11.00 pm each day.
Clients are a mix of American academics to genteel locals. Food ranges from fairly basic to slightly upmarket pub grub and homemade pork pies are sold at the bar. To the rear are one or two little rooms that warrant exploration. The front bar features an upright piano and attractive Art Deco fireplace surround; the floor's quarry tiles are in fact textured lino; the ATM machine isn't attractive though and seems a little pointless given that contactless card transactions are the norm here.
Ales: as below, but more recently Adnams Southwold, Shotover's Oxford Scholar, Hook Norton's Old Hooky and Hop Back's Citra at a very pricey £4.30 a pint (this is Summertown) and very moreish it was too.
This is a superb pub and is indeed a must-visit if in the city, especially when combined with the Gardener's Arms (Plantation Road, not the one across the road) and the Victoria. The age restriction on children and dog ban are the cherry on the cake.

On 29th August 2018 - rating: 9
[User has posted 1001 recommendations about 986 pubs]

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Thuck Phat left this review about The Rose & Crown

An interesting, original and quirky boozer which is attractive both inside and out.
It also comes complete with a peacock of a governor and friendly, easy on the eye bar staff.
The clientele felt much more gown than town on our visit and the atmosphere was learned and civilised without being too dreary.
In fact the interior, split into various small rooms, was cramped and not especially comfortable on a Wednesday evening visit. How do they cope on Friday?
Beers on were Prescott Spring Season, Old Hooky, Adnams Southwold and Shotover Oxford Scholar. A pedestrian range and all that we tried was, at best, indifferent.
An interesting place in which to drink expensive, substandard beer.

On 22nd March 2018 - rating: 6
[User has posted 670 recommendations about 669 pubs]

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Steve of N21 left this review about The Rose & Crown

Another fine pub in the Jericho area of Oxford. An enticing exterior gives way to a traditional pub interior as well described below. The small enclosed garden area outback is well worth a look, especially for the small additional room right at the end that apparently is the building where the landlords son lives and the downstairs room can be rented out for meetings, get togethers e.t.c.
Adnams Southwold Bitter,Box Steam Tunnel Vision, Shotover Scholar, and Hook Norton Old Hooky were the four beers available for our visit and the Tunnel Vission was very passable.
Another very good pub in this area.

On 10th August 2016 - rating: 8
[User has posted 1712 recommendations about 1661 pubs]

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Real Ale Ray left this review about The Rose & Crown

Another well presented pub exterior, with an equally inviting and quirky interior. The layout consisted of an entrance lobby, with church pews for seating along the right hand wall. Two rooms lead off this area, a small front room with a terracotta tiled floor and an upright piano. Behind this room was another small room with a small bar on the left of entry and an open hatch into the lobby. The rear of the pub had a small enclosed garden. There were four ales on handpump, so I went for Old Hooky, which was in good shape.

On 27th July 2016 - rating: 8
[User has posted 2976 recommendations about 2976 pubs]

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Moby Duck left this review about The Rose & Crown

Accessed down a narrow sidestreet, once past the eye catching exterior you find yourself inside a low ceilinged traditional pub with a passageway leading to two seperate rooms with a small but delightful enclosed garden to the rear.Four beers were available, these being, Box Steam Tunnel Vision, Shotover Scholar,Adnams Southwold Bitter and Hook Norton Old Hooky, I found the Scholar to be a servicable beer.
This really is a cracking pub and the only criticism I could level at it is the fact that the beers were rather middle of the road. That said this is a must visit pub in my book.

On 25th July 2016 - rating: 8
[User has posted 1357 recommendations about 1343 pubs]

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Quinno _ left this review about The Rose & Crown

Quick revisit found a fairly disappointing Shotover Scholar at £1.95 half. Hopefully a one-off, as I didn’t recognise any of the staff from previous.

August 2014
Popped in again the other day. Four ales on and my Shotover Scholars was in good shape, washed down with a small home-made pork pie for £1.50. A roaring trade inside and it’s easy to see why it’s so popular. Probably Oxford’s best right now, in my opinion. Rated 9

December 2013
Shocking pink exterior gives way to a very traditional multi-roomed pub within. Enter to an entrance lobby, room off to the left and a further room containing the bar further on down the lobby. A converted lean-to (is it in fact an awning?) creates extra seating space in what was the garden area. The interior rooms are very traditional with low ceilings, wood panelling etc. Four ales; Shotover Scholars Adnams Bitter, Old Hooky and a White Horse Xmas beer. Started off on the White Horse after the Shotover spluttered and died and it was in very good shape. A CAMRA discount (20p a pint, 10p a half) available Sun-Thurs to the Adnams, Hooky and Shotover ales. A decent wine list on a wall-mounted chalk board to the right of the bar. Food offered and a steady stream of roasts emerged from upstairs via what I think was a dumb waiter at the bar. A quiet pub, no TV, machines or music that I could ascertain. The fire in the room I was sat was, sadly, an imitation. There was a person who I assumed to be the owner holding court in the lobby who was very good at doing the meet and greet in an upper-middle class way. Indeed on my way out I passed him some copies of my local CAMRA branch magazine which he enthusiastically received and insisted he buy me a half. So how could I refuse? Very nice it was too. This one’s a bit of a hidden gem and well worth the walk from town. In combination with the Gardeners Arms on the same street, a good couple of hours pubbing can be had for the sake of a 10 minute stroll from the City centre. Rated 9

On 18th September 2015 - rating: 8
[User has posted 4042 recommendations about 4030 pubs]

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Bucking Fastard left this review about The Rose & Crown

A very charming interior to this unspoiled terraced pub situated along a narrow street illumnated by fairy lights at night and including several small ethnic restaurants .You enter into a corridor with a long bench running along one wall with a serving hatch opposite.There are two rooms off the corridor,a quarry tiled front room really quite small and snug and a rear tap room ,a bit larger but with only room enough for a couple of tables and bench seating.Full of atmosphere,and no muzak ,machines or flatscreen to spoil matters,although a front alcove does house a cash machine.There is a popular covered terrace outside with just enough openings to allow legal smoking and there are space heaters here so you can sit here all night if you want.There is a garden room at the far end ,marked as private and housing a large round table and a good number of drinkers,is this a regulars only ?
It's in the 2015 GBG ,which was an additional pull for me.The four handpumps has regulars Adnams Southwold Bitter,Old Hooky and Shotover Scholar which I found in good condition but a disappointing malty beer difficult to down.Hardly an exciting line up ,so you are relying on the guest which on my visit was North Cotswold Shagweaver.
Worth a visit to see the terrific interior,I was a bit underwhelmed by the ale line up but relative to other real ale options in Oxford it's decent enough.

On 24th January 2015 - rating: 8
[User has posted 2090 recommendations about 2090 pubs]

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Danny O'Revey left this review about The Rose & Crown

On a small traditional Victorian Street between 2 busy main roads, north of Oxford centre, the street appears to be trying its hardest to promote eating and drinking like you could be in Oxford central.

Its a delightful, very small old drinking tavern. Corridor bar seating with a small 'snug' its all quaint and Oxfordy, though not comfortable. Odd pictures/tables around and dried hops above the bar. Half covered outdoor area to the rear adds space.

Its a shame the emphasis is on food and its very expensive (£3.70 a pint) and not really welcoming, its slightly 'up itself', otherwise it could be a good find.

5 real ales, rather warm.

On 7th June 2011 - rating: 7
[User has posted 1281 recommendations about 1258 pubs]