The Royal Oak

Paley Street, Maidenhead, SL6 3JN

The Royal Oak, or at least this one, is owned by Michael Parkinson who, at the time of writing looks as though he might have some time on his hands in the fairly near future after a lifetime of hobnobbing with intriguing people. Upon buying it Parky said, "It's an old English pub where I can put my feet up and contemplate the error of my ways". He has been more than ably assisted at the home end by Dominic Chapman, who before he became Parky's Man at The Oak, had already followed a distinguished career in the business, famously opening Heston Blumenthal's Hinds Head pub in nearby Bray. No surprise therefore to find a strong British flavour to the menu, with offal as a speciality, and in general nothing too fancy which, whilst certainly not a reflection on Dominic's abilities, in these times rings a harmonious note at the cash till.

The Royal Oak, or at least this one, is owned by Michael Parkinson who, at the time of writing looks as though he might have some time on his hands in the fairly near future after a lifetime of hobnobbing with intriguing people. Upon buying it Parky said, "It's an old English pub where I can put my feet up and contemplate the error of my ways".

He has been more than ably assisted at the home end by Dominic Chapman, who before he became Parky's Man at The Oak, had already followed a distinguished career in the business, famously opening Heston Blumenthal's Hinds Head pub in nearby Bray.

No surprise therefore to find a strong British flavour to the menu, with offal as a speciality, and in general nothing too fancy which, whilst certainly not a reflection on Dominic's abilities, in these times rings a harmonious note at the cash till.

Start with a dandelion salad with duck hearts and quail. Aha, I hear you say, we can tell where he's coming from. Well yes, but would you argue with smoked eel with beetroot and horseradish? You would? Oh dear, let's try the lamb's kidneys with scrambled duck eggs, or the line caught Cornish sea bass with braised celery, which should certainly get Paddy Burt's vote.

Angus beef supplies the wherewithal for the ever popular steak and chips with Béarnaise sauce, or there's salt beef stovey, a sort of superior Cornish pasty made from shredded cured silverside, heading towards a traditional finish of Cambridge burnt cream or simple bread and butter pudding.

A heavily English wine list provides an interesting and impromptu tutorial in our burgeoning wine industry.

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British

: 12:00 - 14:30 18:30 - 21:30
: 12:00 - 14:30 18:30 - 22:00
: 12:00 - 15:30

Reservations: 01628 620541

Paley Street, Maidenhead, SL6 3JN [Map]

£22.00    £50.00

£19.95 (2 courses) to £22.50 (3 courses), Mon - Sat

(Avg Price is the average cost per person for two courses, coffee, half a bottle of house wine and tip/service)

REVIEWS OF The Royal Oak

Julia (19 February 2009)

My friends and I visited The Royal Oak last week. Well, what a treat! The food was glorious, and for the first time I actually understood why the wine I was drinking went so well with my meal. We didn't have to wait or ask for anything it all just seemed to appear like magic and to my relief that wasn't because there were too many waiters and waitresses in close proximity. A truly wonderful experience, we will most definitely be back!

Carole (10 December 2008)

My husband and I went for dinner last Saturday and we were very disappointed. Whilst the furniture within the bar area was of high quality this did not extend into the dining area, with the tables being rather ordinary looking. We were seated at a table, which frankly shouldn't have been there. We felt we were in the way. The menu was uninviting and the food extremely disappointing. Paying a £100 for two courses is extreme, especially when you don't enjoy it. We won't be returning.

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