Wonderful 15th-c inn with lots of history, character bars, real ales, enjoyable food and big garden; bedrooms
The good pub guide review
This historic inn, first licensed in 1477, is full of stories and packed with character. It was originally a Benedictine monastery built to combat the pagan power of the Neolithic standing stone that still forms part of the wall in the room behind the bar (there's actually 20 feet of stone below the floor). The heavily beamed and partly panelled front bar has elegant mullioned windows and Stuart fireplaces, all sorts of chairs and built-in wall seats with scatter cushions around low oak tables on bare floorboards, and bar stools against the counter. The friendly staff serve Merry Monk (named for them from Dartmoor), Dartmoor Jail Ale and Teignworthy Gun Dog on handpump; also, seven wines by the glass, 70 malt whiskies, 25 ports, local mead and three farm ciders. A small room is equipped with beams, wheelback chairs around polished tables, decorative plates and another open fire. Imposing curved stone steps lead up to the four-acre garden, which has plenty of seats and fine views; there are more tables under parasols out in front. Some of the bedrooms have four-poster beds; Charles Dickens, snowed up one winter, wrote a lot of The Pickwick Papers here. This makes a good stop if you're travelling on the busy A30. You can also walk straight from the door on to Dartmoor and they provide details of walking tours.
The good pub guide food review
Popular food includes Devon minute rump steak with skinny fries, grilled tomato and mushroom, Brixham fish in their own beer batter with chips, mushy peas and home-made tartare sauce, butternut squash and sage ravioli with chilli and herb dressing, katsu chicken curry with rice, cauliflower, spinach and lentil dhal with rice, and puddings such as sticky toffee pudding, summer berry cheesecake and vanilla crème brûlée.
From the moment you set inside the imposing granite Tudor porch way you know you are about to experience something special.The Oxenham Arms is a truly magnificent 12th Century coaching inn. A former Benedictine monastery untouched by the sands of time. Roaring Log Fires, Fabulous value Bar Meals and 4 Eating areas including an AA Rosette restaurant. 3 Real Ales plus guest ale, 80 wines, separate lunch and evening menus, Professional waiter / waitress service. Dog friendly bar and gardens.