Living in Alcester (a pretty small town, by the way!) we have no less than 11 pubs, 2 members' clubs, 3 dine-in indian restaurants, 3 indian takeaways, 2 chinese takeaways, 2 fish and chip shops, a tapas and wine bar, our favourite Essence restaurant (see my separate review!) and a new tea room seems to pop up every other week! We're certainly spoilt for choice for drinking and eating options! Given this, it's perhaps not surprising that even though we live a stone's throw from Alcester's High Street, we ate at the Royal Oak for the first time just a week or so ago, during the inaugural Alcester Beer and Cider Trail on the August Bank holiday Sunday.
We'd heard that there was a new chef at the Oak, one who used to work at another of Alcester's brilliant pubs, so we decided to try out the food to help absorb some of the aforementioned beer and cider...! Given the price of the food (very reasonable indeed), I must admit I wasn't expecting it to be a great meal, but I was very pleasantly surprised when my steak arrived - huge and cooked to perfection with a mound of chips and salad on the side - yum! My partner and one of our friends both had a burger, which again was enormous and reportedly very good indeed.
The only thing that stops the Oak from getting a 5 star review from me was the fact that the menu, although very good, was rather limited, and had only one vegetarian option on the day we visited. The fourth member of our party is a pescetarian, and the chef was more than happy to serve her the prawn starter with chips as a main course, but a few more veggie options would have been nice. Still, considering the Oak isn't really known as a 'foodie' pub, the fact that it does simple pub grub very well and at a great price is a plus point indeed. Just makes it even harder to choose where to go for food in Alcester!
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