Silvie – one of my fave Oxford cafes – has launched a new Sunday lunch offering. The bakery cafe is well known for its glorious cinnamon buns, fab brunches and delicious vegan offerings. But, hold tight, there’s a new reason to visit.
Step through the turquoise front door, into what seems like a traditional family home, and you’ll find yourself in a cosy cafe decked out in snug soft furnishings, cosy armchairs, independent artist pieces and a mixture of kitchen tables and chairs.
What was once, most likely, a cosy family reception room, is now a small dining area with cake-covered counter at which to place your orders. The bay window to the front letting in a beautiful stream of midday sunlight. Explore further along the hall, and the cafe opens into another dining nook, with comfy sofa and further dining tables of varying sizes. Further still, and you’re welcomed into a long, lean conservatory, blessed with more light from a small but pretty garden that snuggles around the rear.
The new Sunday lunch offering isn’t your typical Sunday Roast, as you may expect, but more of a family lunch affair. With homely food that’s well prepared, well considered and, well, bloody tasty.
The menu on our visit offered a choice of two mains for £16 each, with half size portions available for children: butternut squash with an ahhh-mazing chestnut and sage sauce; or venison, orange and cranberry sausage. Both options were served with a good dollop of rustic mash, plus beetroot burnt ends, broccoli, nut roast stuffing, bread sauce and gravy. Everything, except the sausage, being vegan.
My husband and kids, exactly as a suspected, chose the sausages. So in order to sample everything, I went for the full vegan offering. Although not a typical choice for me, I was incredibly smug as soon as I tucked into mine. The sauce – as I may have already mentioned – was delicious and well matched to the roasted squash, the nut roast a welcome addition of ‘bite’.
Andrew and the boys aren’t big beetroot fans, but I gobbled mine up with pleasure. The charred corners and earthy flavour offsetting the rich sweetness and softness elsewhere on the dish.
Puddings of vegan apple cake served with Oatly (my favourite dairy substitute) crème fraîche, and chocolate and hazelnut brownie followed. Both were speedily mopped up; moist, crunchy and rich in all the right places, without being too heavy to sign off a meal with.
Simplicity done brilliantly, with lots of thought to food pairings and flavours. The Sunday lunch offering at Silvie may not offer the traditional roast with Yorkies, but it’s homely and tasty and relaxed – and the cafe continues to be one of my favourites.
Mon to Thurs – 08:00 to 17:00
Fri & Sat – 08:00 to 22:00
Sunday – 09:00 to 16:00
Sunday lunch hours: 1-3pm, bookings and walk-ins welcome.
We dined as guests of Silvie.