Our roundup of the best places to eat in Abingdon covers a wide range of cafés, tea rooms, coffee shops and restaurants offering everything from Lebanese to Mexican cuisine.
Places to eat in Abingdon
We start at Dorindo’s Mexican Restaurant, a warm and welcoming eatery decked out in traditional Mexican colours and boasting warm and fiery flavours. The food is excellent – as are the cocktails – but make sure to save room for the churros: the deep fried Mexican doughnuts with chocolate dipping sauce are divine.
Just as colourful and lively is Chab Thai on the High Street, an authentic Thai restaurant that serves up zingy and extremely tasty street food in a relaxed atmosphere. An Abingdon institution since 2013, their large menu covers a lot of ground but if you’re struggling to choose, they offer all-you-can-eat banquet evenings from Sunday to Wednesday and a great-value lunchtime set menu.
Nearby on Bath Street and a short walk from our Abingdon hotel is Bella Napoli, the leading Italian restaurant in the area. With ivy-covered exteriors and a traditional interior including wooden floors, delicate furniture and chequered tablecloths, the restaurant looks the part and the food is more than a match, delivering simple but flavoursome dishes including all the usual classics.
If that doesn’t get you excited, head a little further down Bath Street to Mezzeh House Lebanese. It’s essentially a Middle Eastern tapas restaurant with a menu split into hot and cold sharing plates including hummus, falafel, tabouleh and dozens more classic dishes. There are several set-course menus if you just can’t decide as well as a range of daily specials, main courses and traditional Lebanese desserts.
Several miles south-east of Abingdon in the small village of Long Wittenham is The Vine and Spice, an Indian restaurant housed in a Grade II listed building over 500 years old. You know when a restaurant offers a seven-course tasting menu that the food is at the upper end of the spectrum, but there are plenty of cheaper options from the a la carte menu as well. Plus, alongside the stylish main restaurant, there’s also a separate bar and beer garden for pre- and post-dinner drinks.
Dorindo’s Mexican Restaurant
On the High Street in the centre of Abingdon, R&R ticks a lot of boxes. Light and airy, the café serves up everything from full English breakfasts to delicate cupcakes, tray bakes, salads and lunches as well as their own range of Cornish ice cream milkshakes which are truly slurpilicious.
Caffeine fans should check out Java & Co next door. An independent coffee shop, they have a wide range of fresh tea and coffee on offer – as well as a big range of milk and milk substitutes to choose from – while they also bake their own cakes and serve all day breakfast and brunch options.
If there’s a better way to spend your afternoon than by alternating bites of delicate sandwiches and cakes with slurps of freshly brewed tea, then we’d love to know. Until then, Rosie’s Tea Room just off the High Street is an excellent place to dig into a small mountain of cake, scones and sandwiches washed down by your choice of over a dozen brews delivered in fine china teapots. And it’s just a short walk from our Abingdon hotel.
The Barns Cafe isn’t just an excellent café – built in a converted barn that dates back over 300 years – it’s a slice of historical importance. And it’s staffed by a team of church volunteers from around the region, making it a real pillar of the community. Once you’ve decided what to eat and drink from their wide range of cakes, sandwiches, loose-leaf teas and freshly-ground coffee, head upstairs to find the board games, puzzles and kids toys and settle in on their sofas and comfy seats.
Annie’s at the Boathouse have their hot drinks tailored to a tea – they have one of the largest ranges of loose-leaf tea in town as well as a range of Sumatran coffee all freshly-ground on-site. And nestled on Abingdon Bridge in the middle of the River Thames, the café has some amazing background scenery to revel in while you wait for your tea to finish stewing. The food shouldn’t be forgotten, however, as they cover everything from breakfast, lunch, salads and ploughmans, afternoon tea and a wide range of cakes and scones.