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Muddy review: Table 13 supper club, Wheatley

If you're plant-based, vegan-curious, or just plain in love with food, then this innovative fine dining experience will be right up your street. Run, don't walk, to Table 13, you're gonna love it.

THE LOWDOWN

Banish all thoughts of falafel and bean sprouts – Table 13 is proof that a plant-based menu can be creative, elevated, and frankly just flippin’ delicious. The brain child of foodie wunderkind, 28-year-old Georgia Gallacher, this Wheatley-based supper club boasts a nine-course tasting menu that changes monthly, paired with locally-sourced, unfiltered wines and delightful cocktail creations. What’s even more impressive is that it’s only been going since the end of 2021 – Georgia opened the doors to her parents’ kitchen in October and hasn’t looked back since.

THE VIBE

If you’re more used to a traditional restaurant set-up than supper clubs, here’s the 411: Table 13 seats a maximum of ten people in one sitting a night, and you’ll be elbow-to-elbow with your fellow diners on one communal kitchen table where you watch Georgia and her resident mixologist for the evening at work on each of the incredible tasting courses. It’s like attending a dinner party at your (incredibly talented) mate’s house. And it is genuinely a house – Table 13 is hosted round the back of an unassuming residential property on a through road in Wheatley. You’re not going to just stumble across it – there’s not even a sign – which is all the better for making it feel like you and your fellow diners have discovered a total hidden gem.

Inside, the vibes are casual but cool, with signature dark green decor, foodie books and bottles of local booze lining the walls, as well as the restaurant’s scrawled logo sitting proud (Georgia reveals she literally scribbled this onto a napkin, and thus her branding was born).

SCOFF & QUAFF

Onto the main event: the menu. Made up of nine tasting courses, along with wine/cocktail pairings, it changes monthly and is, naturally, seasonal and as locally-sourced as possible. Even the wines and spirits are from local distilleries and buyers wherever possible, and the non-alcoholic options are whipped up with shrubs made from leftover peels and rinds of fruits used in the food on the night. Nothing goes to waste here – while more meat-focused eateries might use the phrase ‘nose-to-tail cooking’, Georgia prefers the moniker ‘seed-to-stalk’. It’s genius and it pervades every dish, from starter to dessert. Speaking of which…

Our night began with a Cute as a Cucumber cocktail, made with Georgia’s own homemade pear vodka, elderflower, a twist of cucumber and topped off with soda – the perfect refreshing starter to accompany the first two nibbles, which were based around Lettuce and Tomato respectively. There aren’t really ‘courses’ as such at Table 13, but these two were amuse-bouche sized, and totally packed with flavour for such small bites.

The Lettuce dish was a sliver of barbecued lettuce, served with a walnut salsa, seaweed mayonnaise and fresh radish, while the Tomato was an incredible hot mouthful of green tomato soaked in buttermilk and fried in cornmeal, with tomato chutney and whipped plant-based feta. Luckily, Georgia advises on how best to tackle each dish (with a knife and fork or with your hands), so you can throw dignity to the winds and greedily suck feta off your fingertips while sitting with strangers you met 20 minutes ago.

Next up, the bread course. If you’re not a total carboholic like moi, it might seem strange to have an entire course dedicated to bread and butter – but wait until you’ve tried Georgia’s stout soda bread, made with a different Oxfordshire stout every month, as well as oats and treacle. And try it you shall, because although every course on the menu changes monthly, the bread course stays the same every time (largely because you can’t improve upon perfection). Served up warm with an Oxford Rye reduction from the local TOAD distillery and a dollop of butter so convincing, I asked Georgia whether she offered a vegan version too, this course was a total standout to me. Not bad for bread and butter, eh?

In my carb reverie, I almost forgot to mention the drink: a root vegetable and lapsang souchong tea. It looked innocent and unassuming, but was so hot, smokey and savoury that it was like drinking a soup made from bonfire.

Onto the equivalent of starters, which comprised Potato and Beetroot dishes. The Potato was all about the humble Jersey Royal, and was like a gourmet take on a potato soup thanks to the addition of bright green, herby vichyssoise, barbecued asparagus, and pickled yellow mustard seeds for bite.

The Beetroot dish was another handheld (and slightly undignified) affair, comprising a beetroot taco, horseradish cream fresh enough to sting the nose, crispy garlic and sweet fresh cherries. All the while, we happily supped on two accompanying (and excellent) red wines, both from the Catalan region of Spain, and sourced by local lot The Oxford Wine Company.

Aubergine was up next for ‘mains’ – a Middle Eastern-inspired dish of aubergine tempura and date-glazed smokey aubergines, roasted almond paste and Middle Eastern chutney sprinkled with dukka. This was a firm favourite on the table, and surprisingly filling. Lucky for us then, it was followed by the palate-cleansing Fennel, a yogurt sorbet served up with vermouth-soaked fennel and grape and cucumber pickle. A welcome dish that was both bonkers and refreshing (and paired excellently with the white Coteaux du Layon wine).

Finally, finally, onto the desserts. This dish was one of my favourites from the entire night: a pea and mint ice cream (yes, really), garnished with white chocolate ganache, a shard of meringue and a macadamia crumble. Apparently creating sweet dishes with vegetables is one of Georgia’s preferred culinary experiments, so expect something similar on your menu should you visit.

As a final bite for the night, what looked like Oreos turned out to be a cocoa biscuit with crushed cherry pit ice cream (made with the stones of the cherries from the Beetroot dish – there’s that seed-to-root cooking at work), washed down with a Physicello, a homemade limoncello-style liqueur made from TOAD’s Physic gin (distilled with botanicals from Oxford’s botanic garden, did you know?).

It bears noting that there is a non-alcoholic pairing for each course, which are equally as delicious as the boozy options – so designated drivers need not feel left out.

OUT & ABOUT

Table 13 is a true foodie destination – that is to say, there’s no stumbling into it after a long day in town, or after sundowner drinks. At most, you might want to work up a pre-dinner appetite by strolling through the nearby Waterperry Gardens (above) or to see Wheatley Windmill just outside of town, but we recommend treating the supper club as the main attraction here.

THE MUDDY VERDICT

GOOD FOR: Plant-based foodies looking for an elevated dining experience, groups of up to ten (this would make an amazing experience to book out with a few friends) and vegan skeptics. Hear me out! Table 13 is proof that ditching the meat and dairy need not mean flavourless food – it’s a masterclass in creative, plant-based cooking, and will convert even the most obligate carnivores.
NOT FOR: Shy diners – you’ll be up close and personal with your fellow foodies here, so it’s not one for those craving privacy of their date night dinners. It’s also not an affair for young children, although I reckon it would appeal to teens desperate to be on the grown-up table.
THE DAMAGE: £79 per head, including beverage pairings. For the quantity and quality of food on offer, a very reasonable cost in my opinion (you’re talking nine courses and six drinks).

Table 13, 13 London Road, Wheatley, Oxford, OX33 1YJ. Tel: 07943 957770

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