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“Excellent tea room”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Oak Room

Oak Room
Ranked #81 of 123 Restaurants in Dorchester
Cuisines: Cafe, British
Dining options: Lunch, Brunch, Breakfast, Highchairs Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Restaurant details
Dining options: Lunch, Brunch, Breakfast, Highchairs Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Poole, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
842 reviews
483 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 324 helpful votes
“Excellent tea room”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 July 2013

Whilst visiting Dorchester we came across this tea room in the Antelope Arcade. It is situated on the first floor and is like stepping back in time. The room has wood panelling and the waitresses reminded me of Upstairs Downstairs all dressed in their black and white traditional uniform, you will only know what I mean if you are of a certain age!

We ordered coffee and an Earl Grey Tea which came with lemon and I have to say this is the first time I have been offered lemon in a long time so I was quite impressed.

There was a proper heat pad on the table for the teapots so everything was presented properly.

The menu looked very good indeed and we were sorry that we weren't hungry. The prices were extremely reasonable

Overseas visitors would find this place absolutely charming and the history is fascinating.

Toilets are on the second floor but were clean and tidy and decorated in the same black and white theme that runs throughout the place.

A great tea room and well worth a visit. I will definitely go back

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank AngieP49
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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87 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
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    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Dorchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
10 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Very nice”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 July 2013

Good food and service. Quite a good atmosphere with the waitresses dress in old fashioned outfits. Not good for wheel chair users as it is upstairs. Better off going to The Horse with the Red Umbrella where they also serve delicious all home cooked food.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
Thank 404Linda404
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ashburton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
9 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Step back in time”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 June 2013

An amazing place tucked away in the Antelope Arcade, upstairs and into a finely paneled room with an enormous fire place.

The waitresses were a delight, competent and wearing traditional black with white aprons and little white caps, I felt that I had stepped back in time, to a more elegant age.

I only wanted a sandwich and a soft drink, at lunch time, but that was no problem, Stilton pear and bacon, very tasty.

I will make my way there next time I go to Dorchester.

In 1685, Judge Jeffreys came to Dorchester and stayed in High West Street Dorchester, It was built in the early 17th century, and is one of the few timber-framed buildings to survive Dorchester’s disastrous town fires. Here he sat in trial of the supporters of the Duke of Monmouth and their failed rebellion against King James II. The Bloody Assizes were held in the Oak Room (now a Tea Room) of the Antelope Hotel on the 5th day of September 1685 (an assize were courts originally initiated by King Henry II (1154-1189), where he would send judges all over the country to preside over local cases). Judge Jeffreys is said to have had a secret passage from his lodgings to the Oak Room. Jeffreys didn’t believe in half measures and hanged, transported, whipped and fined hundreds of the unfortunate accused.

And yet it is a very charming room.

  • Visited June 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank richardmcfadyen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cheltenham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
821 reviews
229 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 386 helpful votes
“historic & fun; - tea + cakes are excellent as well”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 April 2013

Dating from 1589 this was England's dark legal past. This is the site of Judge Jefferies courtroom and bloody assizes in 1685 following the crushing of the Monmouth Rebellion. Many died many tortured.
Happliy, this first floor teashop is far more fun, with the waitresses in 1920s "nippy" uniform and keen to show off the period gramaphone, (it will never replace the ipod though).
The room is C17th period with oak panelling , very impressive fireplace and genuine creeking , uneven floorboards.
Keen service, good range of cakes and china pots of various teas, served, when we were there, with the Charleston on the wind up gramaphone. Slightly surreal but great fun.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank cherriesfan_9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Epsom
Level Contributor
423 reviews
244 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 169 helpful votes
“Worth a visit for the history alone.”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 April 2013

The restaurant is in the alleged courtroom or Judge Jeffries. It is a beautiful oak panelled room full of character. Only spoilt by a modern drinks fridge in the corner. The waitresses are dressed in the old "nippy" style uniform from the days of Lyons Corner Shops. The service is excellent. I would have preferred patterened bone china which would have been more in keeping.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank F1roger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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