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“Best night out in 2017”

Branca Restaurant and Bar
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Ranked #71 of 712 Restaurants in Oxford
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$ 10 - US$ 26
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special Occasion Dining, Groups
Dining options: Breakfast, Lunch, After-hours, Dinner, Delivery, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: Observatory Street
Transit: Oxford railway and coach stations 5-10 min walk.
Description: After opening over 15 years ago in the heart of cosmopolitan Jericho, Branca has firmly established itself as a bustling, vibrant bar & restaurant with an extensive modern European menu, a destination deli next door and beautiful garden terrace for al fresco summer dining.
Reviewed 4 June 2017 via mobile

Since relocating to Oxford, me and my wife have been hard pressed to find that special restaurant that local hangout that covers all the bases...... WE HAVE NOW!!!!!!!!
We started our Saturday just looking for a quick snack in the sun with the kids and we heard from a work colleague that Branca has a beautiful garden in the rear of the restaurant, so we head off down beautiful trendy Walton street .

When we arrived we were greeted by the manager Rob ( host/salesman/down right gentleman). We weren't looking for for the full lunch experience just some snacks and a drink. Rob recommended we do the deli platter - selection of deli classics Parma ham, mini chorizo, buffalo mozzarella and pickled veg, small roast vegetable and goats cheese salad and a half and half pizza. During the ordering I blinked and suddenly ice cold bottles of water and focaccia bread arrived..... who trains the staff David Blaine, Magic.

The food was amazing, the staff friendly and chatty..... all 5 stars.

Being a Saturday, we had a feeling that the restaurant might be fully booked, so we corned Rob on the way out, for a booking in the evening , minus the kids. Booked in for 8pm.

I have always been a bit hesitant about returning to a restaurant, in the same day especially after a first great meal. Let's say the bar was raised ten fold because the night was just as great.

We arrived just before 8pm for a drink at the and the restaurant was packed, Rob still tirelessly working his magic, got us a couple of glasses of prosecco on him, whilst we waited for our table. Once seated, I blinked again and cold bottle of water and focaccia, we weren't doing a starter, so we recommended the tuna and the small trout risotto both dishes were superb, fresh ingredients that are well delivered.

So I wanted to see if we could stretch our stomachs just a few more inches and opted for the pudding taster. CHOCOLATE NEMESIS...... we where told told you wouldn't want chocolate again for a week after that....... so good.

The two trips were both amazing, you feel like VIPS...........ps we booked again for next Friday night.

1  Thank Oxondiners
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (649)
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92 - 96 of 649 reviews

Reviewed 3 June 2017 via mobile

We never got to eat here due to the level of service we received. We were left for over 15 minutes before we walked out. What hit the nail on the head was seeing a table who has just walked in besides us get serviced within seconds still leaving us. You should be appalled! This was my rare night off as a waitress and branca spoilt it!

2  Thank Roxy Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 June 2017 via mobile

What looked like a charming Italian restaurant, we were greeted by a barman who didn't want to work tonight.
Once we approached the head of house for our table we were ignored for a further 20 mins from a table centre of the room.
We left before even being asked what we would like . 25 mins of pure frustration

2  Thank DanSPURSjackson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 June 2017 via mobile

I cannot rave enough about the inside of this restaurant. It is very stylish, light and open with a huge tree in the middle. My partner and I love it here. The portions are quite small but the quality of the food is incredible. There wasn't too much choice when it came to gluten free- you pretty much need to like meat or fish. They did have one gluten free pasta dish which is more than some places! I had sea bass with new potatoes and it was really tasty. I would definitely recommend for a date night.

3  Thank Marianne T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 May 2017

We booked a table at Branca on the recommendation of a friend, and boy, are we glad we did. We were greeted by Rob with a smile a mile wide and an easy, friendly manner and immediately lead to our table where the perfectly chilled bottle of Prosecco I'd pre-ordered for our anniversary celebrations was waiting. Rob wished us a happy anniversary and poured the drinks for us. Our order was taken by Harriet - who again was so friendly and relaxed. We were invited to go and sit in the walled garden with our drinks after we'd ordered, which we did as it was a very pleasant evening. Harriet came and found us when our food was ready and asked if we'd like to eat outside instead, which we decided against so we took our places back inside at our table.

I ordered the king prawn linguine, and my wife the wild boar tortellini special. OH. MY. GOD. Both were absolutely delicious. Full of delicate flavours, wonderful aromas, piping hot and pasta cooked to perfection. Throughout the meal Harriet was attentive but not overbearing, and every time a member of staff passed the table they were smiling.

Dessert was just as fabulous - the chocolate nemesis and pannacotta special in our case, and Rob brought us over a complimentary glass of dessert wine each to finish.

The whole experience was just as it should be - never rushed, attentive, warm, friendly, great food, excellent wine, surrounded by staff who were clearly enjoying their work.

We live around 60 miles from Oxford and were visiting the city for our anniversary weekend, but I would probably drive the 120 mile round trip just to eat here again. It really is that good.

Do yourselves a favour and book a table. You won't be disappointed.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
2  Thank Tony V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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