Food review: The Oak Tree in Norwich

I’ve wanted to try the offering from this pub just beyond the ring road in south Norwich for a while.

But what finally got me to put it on my list of food critics actually came from the pages of this journal in late April.

To be more specific, we reported that the Oak Tree was offering unlimited Yorkies with every Sunday roast.

And since I wholeheartedly agree with the author of this article that “Yorkshire puddings are the best part of a roast dinner”, my wife and I took a walk around 7pm on the Sabbath.

I soon found out that they already had no roast dinners for the day, which upset my whole plan to tell you about it.

So we headed back to the drawing board and one of the many cozy dining rooms to peruse the menu.

The great beer garden of the Oak Tree in Norwich.
– Credit: Le Chêne

This was my first time eating out after the new nutrition advice laws came into effect, and I carefully tried to avoid looking too closely at the numbers next to ‘kcal’ after each item. .

To start, my wife chose the prawns and calamari duo starter (£5.79). A trio of breaded prawns sat next to three calamari sticks, also coated in breadcrumbs, and she got a small piece of lemon mayonnaise for dipping.

The prawns and calamari duo (£5.79) at the Oak Tree, Norwich.

The prawns and calamari duo (£5.79) at the Oak Tree, Norwich.
– Credit: Stuart Anderson

I tried a bit of a calamari stick and it was fine, just wish I had more!

I opted for the grilled chicken and chorizo ​​skewers (£5.99). It was really good value – two sticks of well-cooked meat on a small bed of peppers and onions – all drizzled with sweet chilli sauce.

The flavors contrasted nicely. I could have even used a slice of bread or two with it, but the kebabs were still great on their own.

The grilled chicken and chorizo ​​skewers (£5.99) at Oak Tree, Norwich.

The grilled chicken and chorizo ​​skewers (£5.99) at Oak Tree, Norwich.
– Credit: Stuart Anderson

For her main course, my wife turned to the specialty menu, which was on a blackboard right next to where we were seated.

She finally chose the lobster linguini (£15.28). I got to try some and it was great – the seafood was good and salty and worked in harmony with the white wine sauce of the pasta.

Lobster linguine (£15.28), from the special menu at the Oak Tree in Norwich.

Lobster linguine (£15.28), from the special menu at the Oak Tree in Norwich.
– Credit: Stuart Anderson

Spring onions, chives and pea shoots added hints of greenery to the dish, which seemed to have been prepared with great care and attention.

I went for the Hunter signature chicken (£12.49), which was brilliant. The plate was well presented with a generous portion of fries and breaded onion rings, along with a pile of fresh peas and a grilled tomato.

The Hunter's Signature Chicken (£12.49) at Oak Tree in Norwich.

The Hunter’s Signature Chicken (£12.49) at Oak Tree in Norwich.
– Credit: Stuart Anderson

The chicken itself was piping hot in its own ceramic dish – as is often the case with Hunter’s chicken – which had the added bonus of keeping the sticky barbecue sauce from dripping all over the place.

The chicken was topped with bacon and the whole thing was topped with melted mozzarella and cheddar cheese. It was quite a tasty combination and the meat itself tasted juicy and fresh.

Although our bellies were already quite full, we persevered and both ordered pudding, which arrived promptly in large identical sundae bowls.

My wife went for the Eton Mess sundae (£5.29) topped with lots of cream and strawberries. Below were pieces of meringue and vanilla ice cream.

It came with a raspberry coulis sauce and seemed like a really well done take on this classic British dessert.

The Eton Mess Sundae (£5.29) at the Oak Tree in Norwich.

The Eton Mess Sundae (£5.29) at the Oak Tree in Norwich.
– Credit: Stuart Anderson

Looking for a chocolate fix, I picked up the Easter sundae (£5.79) from the specialty menu. Most of it was layers of vanilla ice cream and chocolate fudge cake.

Chocolate sauce and cream was poured over it, and the whole thing was adorned with Smarties and a creme egg (£5.79).

The Easter sundae from the specials menu at the Oak Tree in Norwich.

The Easter sundae from the specials menu at the Oak Tree in Norwich.
– Credit: Stuart Anderson

I would have normally enjoyed all the constituent parts, but all together they were somehow overwhelming and a little too sweet.

I was only able to make it halfway through before I had to admit defeat and stop eating, although to be honest that was mostly because the previous courses were so filling. I would probably avoid this in the future, but if you have a very sweet tooth give it a try!

We returned home happy and full – although we missed the Sunday roasts and the promise of bottomless Yorkies.

The Oak Tree is in Ipswich Road, on the edge of the Tuckswood estate. This is the part of Norwich where you can find several interesting Robin Hood-related street names, and the pub itself was once called the Maid Marion.

Inside The Oak in Norwich.

Inside The Oak in Norwich.
– Credit: Stuart Anderson

It’s very much like a family friendly pub, and is obviously loved by the local community. During our meal almost everyone there sang along as the staff baked a cake for someone’s 29th birthday.

A quiz was about to start as we finished.

The venue has been recently refurbished and looks great, with carpet inside and a great beer garden outside. There is a fireplace, TV screens and lots of light.

Oak tree artwork decorates the walls, and it’s fun to peek through and see all the different variations on this particular theme.

Excellent value for money for the quality of the food. The portions were generous – actually too big in my case compared to the sundae – and everything was tasty. Our bill was £63.40 for two starters, two mains, two desserts, two beers and a soft drink.

The usual range of beers, ales, wines, spirits and hot drinks you’ll find in the vast majority of pubs are also on offer here. We stuck with a few traditional favorites – I had a pint of Doom Bar (£4.05) and my wife had a tall glass of Draft Diet Coke (£3.30).

The toilets were clean, functional and centrally located.

The pub is on the ground floor and quite spacious so anyone with limited mobility need not worry about getting around.

The staff were really friendly and the food and drinks we ordered were produced quickly. You can place your orders at the bar, or download the My Pub application and stay at your table.

In summary
A great friendly pub with quick service and decent food. There’s nothing too demanding at The Oak Tree – it’s a place to relax with friends and family and enjoy some easy good times.

If you like it, try these

Urban Fair, Norwich
This café-bar-restaurant with a touch of originality, located on the outskirts of the city center, is well worth a visit for all foodies.

No. 33 Exchange Street in Norwich
No 33 has become one of Norwich’s most popular cafes and expanded a few years ago to occupy neighboring premises.

The Butterfly Cafe, King Street in Norwich
A decent cafe serving all-day breakfasts nestled in the heart of a charming downtown community

Our food opinions are always independent. They are the opinion of the reviewer based on their experience of the place during their visit. The establishment is unaware of our visit, is not informed of our intention to write a review, and the bills are paid by the reviewer. The choice of places reviewed is also independent and not based on places that do or do not advertise in our publications.

About Keith Johnson

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