Yes, Oxford.  No, not the Bullingdon Club with the pig “menu”. But close enough.


First time in our second University city since last year, music not pubs this time.

She’s Welsh

No new pubs, and nothing new in a city centre still clinging to the 1500s.


You were hoping I’d go back to the Lamb & Flag, weren’t you ?

Instead, here’s the City Arms,  an ex-It’s A Scream in the heart of Studentville.


Whatever possessed you ?” I hear you say.

Well, as Stafford Paul will confirm, Stonegate are a different beast these days.

Not just because of the Cherry Milkshake IPA that Paul swears by,


but a solid and pleasingly unexciting range.

After much deliberation he went for Doom Bar

I’m no Hobgoblin fan, but the Gold version was cool and crisp and would be a worthy addition to the GBG on that form (NBSS 3+).

Shock horror

Feeling very studenty, I went for the Michaelmas term special of Cauliflower Dhansak.

job lot of cauliflower

Again, surprisingly good and not at all ping food.

Nicely done

Plenty of older folk like our discerning Doom Bar drinker alongside the studentz, with a soundtrack of “Mirror In The Bathroom” and “Re-Rewind” to appeal to neither camp.

I even got to watch the first half of Bochum v Nurnberg in Bundeliga 2, the preferred league for Brasenose Undergraduates.

A real find that will never get in the Guide, which I can exclusively reveal puts it on a par with the tiny Brew Dog where I enjoyed a pint of Punk AF.



I’m determined to find a low/no alcohol beer worth drinking. Punk AF, which I now understand to mean Alcholf Free rather than the alternative, isn’t bad.


But it is fizzy, and I couldn’t face any of the craft in the Bullingdon.


I think Orchard Thieves was narrowly edging the battle of the blands.

View from the bar

Dull beer, decent gig, daft toilets.  How very Oxford.


9 thoughts on “THE BULLINGDON CLUB

  1. Think that’s the first time I’ve seen jam jars in front of the keg fonts. But 4 IPA’s, it’s as bad as having 4 indistinguishable pale ales, from breweries you’ve never heard of, on cask.


  2. I’m starting to get the hang of these AF beers.

    Basically, for me, it’s stay away from anything malty, and stick with the fresher, hoppier ones.

    Yes, Punk IPA AF is about the best so far if you ask me. It mixes well with a half of anything similar, but normal ale, to give a pleasant pint – if expensive – of small beer too.

    Shandy is dead.


  3. “Stafford Paul will confirm, Stonegate are a different beast these days”. Yes.
    Coincidently only yesterday I was thinking I was due another visit to Oxford. Probably not far into the new year.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There are, I read, 772 Stonegate pubs and 883 Wetherspoons (and dropping). Quite similar.

      If you sampled 100 people over 18, I suspect 80% would recognise the Spoons brand. I’d be astonished if the figure for Stonegate was above 5.


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