Flipping fabulous! Where to eat this Pancake Day
Can't be bothered with the faff of Pancake Day? Drop the spatula and make a reservation at one of these eateries instead.
If you can’t think of anything worse than flour, eggs and globs of Nutella plastered all over the kitchen (including the ceiling, if the flipping goes particularly badly), then save yourself the hassle and go out this Pancake Day. Trust us, the kids will enjoy it just as much.
Olney Pancake Parlour, Olney
A fitting place for a pancake parlour, as Olney was apparently home of the first pancake race back in 1445 (now you know!) and continues the tradition today. Never fear though, you won’t need to don your running shoes to eat at Olney Pancake Parlour. This diddy cafe does what it says on the tin, with sweet and savoury pancakes the main event of the menu, and kids’ sizes for those with smaller chops. One smoked salmon and avocado brunch pancake for us, please.
Dirty Bones, Oxford
If you’re heading into Westgate, there are a wondrous number of pancake options available to you, including Breakfast Club (after all, it’s kind of their thing), but we’ll be reserving a table at Dirty Bones on Tuesday. Their ‘Pimp Your Pancakes‘ menu is available on 25 Feb only, and lets you customise a stack of buttermilk pancake with a selection of ten toppings including lavender-marinated strawberries, caramelised bananas, white chocolate sauce and signature fried chicken, starting from £7.
Muddy favourite Fego is always a great lunching and brunching option, and their pancake offerings are slightly more upmarket choice for this Shrove Tuesday. Go classic with a fluffy pancake stack with fresh blueberries or bacon, or all-out with their pancake plate – which is essentially a full fried breakfast sandwiched between pancakes and covered in syrup. If you can’t get to their Marlow branch, shoot over to Gerrards Cross or Beaconsfield instead.
James St Tavern, Oxford
Did you know that this East Oxford pub specialises in French street food? Now you do! After its renovation last summer, James St Tavern offers a lip-smacking crepe menu with plenty of sweet and savoury options (top tip – if you order a dessert crepe, you can get a half-price espresso martini to wash it down with). As well as the classics, you can chow down on a Chinese-style roast duck pancake, a roasted Mediterranean vegetable pancake with mozzarella and pesto or a smoked salmon, cream cheese and spinach pancake, all for under a tenner.
The Works, High Wycombe and Aylesbury
For those with a proper sweet tooth (or masochist parents prepared to deal with sugar rush), it has to be The Works – these pancake and waffle creations are off-the-charts bonkers, with flavours such as s’mores, Oreo cupcake and strawberry cheesecake menu staples. There are savoury options too, with flavours including Tex Mex and hot dog (I know, who would?), but make sure to wash it down with a Monster shake – the Choccy Monster flavour includes Kinder Bueno, Kit Kat, Smarties, white chocolate sauce and whipped cream. Calorie counters need not apply.
Creperie Angelie, Bicester
If you’re more a pancake snacker than a sit-down meal lady, then you’ll love these on-the-go beauties from Creperie Angelie in Bicester Village. Favourites here include wild mushrooms and melted gruyere cheese, lemon and thyme roasted chicken with melted Emmental, and sea-salted caramel, banana and whipped cream. We’ll have one now and one for the road, please.
French Affaire, Milton Keynes
For dreamy Insta interiors and a glass of Bollinger alongside your crepe, head over to this French-inspired bistro in Stony Stratford tout suite. They have a huge range of savoury and sweet dishes (including Eggs Benedict crepes that are perfect for brunch), and every pancake can be made with gluten-free batter so everyone can partake in a little pancake action.
Little Amsterdam, Banbury
These Dutch pancakes (or pannenkoeken, technically) are ideal for anyone looking to push the boat out this Pancake Day, as the flavours are perhaps a little more, er, inventive than your standard fare – options include bacon and pineapple (yes, together), butternut squash curry and haddock in white wine sauce. Never fear, there are simpler flavours too, and there’s also a ‘create your own option’ for those who want their dishes just so. Owners Ilja and Lino recommend the poffertjes, fluffy mini pancakes that the Dutch enjoy with butter and a generous dusting of icing sugar.
Crepe Escape, Princes Risborough
This family-friendly cafe on the High Street is a no-frills affair, but with delicious crepes coming in well under a fiver, it’s a dead cert for parents after a quick pancake fix. We’ll be ordering the Rocky Road crepe, which is chocolate brownie, mini marshmallows and chocolate sauce served with vanilla ice cream. Race you there.