At the start of my first term at Cambridge, my tutor gave me a list of information and recommendations for making the most out the city; the one that I find myself most frequently repeating to others is The Maypole. Its Italian owners, the Castiglione's, have been at the pub for 40 years as of last year, and have succeeded in making it a fantastic local pub and student haunt, and my go-to venue when entertaining visiting friends and family. Set apart a little way past the ADC Theatre by Jesus Green, or best approached through Portugal Place, The Maypole feels both away from the tourist bustle of the city, while at the same time as important a strand of its DNA as King's Chapel or the Corpus Clock (to some, anyway). Excellent beer, good, hearty food with an Italian focus, and a friendly and unpretentious atmosphere: the true watering-hole in a student safari.
Favorite Dish: Not the best person to comment on food perhaps, as I have the Vegetable Lasagne and Tiramisu (separate courses) every time I come to eat, but people I have taken have said good things about its meaty counterpart, and the bangers and mash.
Family restaurant that operates under the Beefeater chain belonging to the Premier Inn Stable. The Travellers Rest is an old Coaching Inn that offers customers an “olde worlde” atmosphere with wooden beams, open fires and is split over four levels. Although the menu is similar to any other Beefeater the meal itself was all that could be asked of it.
Monday to Saturday: 11:00 am to 12:00 midnight
Sunday: 12:00 noon to 11:00 pm
Favorite Dish: 10 oz. Rib-eye steak, tomato, mushroom and bottomless Fries £15.49
Chocolate Fudge Brownie Sundae £4.29
Fosters Shandy £3.15
Good pub on the outskirts of Cambridge with quite a lot of space inside. The Red Bull is a very classic pub with beer, sports on the telly, a handful of locals, old-style furniture and a friendly atmosphere. It is the contrast to chain pubs of Greene King and Wetherspoons. Real ale culture is celebrated here with a good choice. Was very statisfied, especially with the food - the pasta dish was delicious. The audience is pretty mixed regarding age. However, due to the location, you will rarely find any other tourists in here.
Although it is in the hands of Greene King, this is a good old solid pub located in the city centre. It's not as classic as the Pickerel Inn or as the Mitre was some time ago, but still an old pub with certain tradition. There are a couple of nice corner in the rear side of the pub where you can stand and have a drink while tables to eat in are in the front. Tables are however hard to get as the pub is always pretty busy. TV is always running, usually with news and sport events.
The largest of the riverside pubs in Cambridge, but a little quieter than the Anchor. As it is located a little outside of the city centre, the view on the Cam includes more nature and less colleges. Good place for a pint or two or an item from the menu (standard Greene King with usual offers like 2 for 1 Sunday Roasts) and not as touristy as many pubs in the city centre.
A mexican restaurant located at the Cambridge Leisure Center, next to a music venue and a cinema. The late start of the movie in the cinema was the main reason why I visited this place. Had a garlic bread and a soup, together with a beer. Good service, I was satisfied, the only negative point was that the restaurant lacked certain atmosphere. Food was good, but the place seemed to be really artifical. I am not really sure, if I would pick this place again. But at least, it looks to be one of the better places around the Cambridge Leisure Center. Come to eat in connection with the cinema or one of the other venues, but look for other places in town if you just want to eat out.
I don't know, if I picked the worst restaurant in the Cambridge Leisure centre (close to the train station at Hill's Road), but this one was below my expectations. Servings were not really big and the food (pasta with funghi) tasted like reheated with artificial flavours and preservants. Staff was friendly, but that did not save the food. Neighbouring Chiquito's, which usually recieves worse reviews than Bella Italia, had better food IMHO. For good Italian food, there are better choices at St. Andrew's and Regent Street. An Italian restaurant, with simple, but good homemade food I would like to recommend is Clown's at King Street.
The place is also known as "Robin Hood and Little John" and was one of the big disappointments in Cambridge! The restaurant seems to cater for the needs of large groups but was completely understaffed. I was there during the week and the place was only half full - still, it took me an awful lot of time to get attention from the waiter. For payment, it was even half an hour! It finally resulted in zero tip.
I had a sunday roast, which was of average quality. Could have gone to any Greene King Pub instead where I would have been attended and would have been in a better environment. Probably, this is a good choice if you are organizing a birthday party and maybe as a large group, you will get the attention you deserve. As an individual or small group (especially when you come for drinking and not for eating), visit one of the classic pubs in Cherry Hinton or go to any place in town, but don't even think about driving out to visit this place.
Cambridge has a range of good Italian restaurants, but few offer basic Italian dishes in home-made quality. That said, you should not expect eclectic dishes at "Clowns", but a meal which you would get served at a family's home. The interior is rather basic and you should pick up your drinks and cutlery from the bar like in a typical pub. Both times I went where, the food was great, a big serving of salad was part of the meal. While I can't remember the pasta dish I had, I have a very high opinion of the parmiggiana.
The place is popular with students and university staff alike, so it can become quite full during lunchtime. People with coulrophobia should be careful – as the name suggests, you will find a lot of clown pictures on the walls...
Favorite Dish: PARMIGGIANA!
This friendly and newly established cafe/restuarant in Kings Street is a great place to eat home cooked Sushi and Japanese food. Freshly cooked and not expensive I had a wonderful meal there.
Simply decorated with friendly staff, it is competeing with an established Noodle bar just two doors away, but it offers different cuisine.
Bento boxes to take away, fresh Sushi and great Ramen noodles
Favorite Dish: The Ramon noodles are the best in Cambridge but so far I love the Spicy Kimchee Seafood Udon. Full of tasty fish and spicy. Wonderful
Started with freshly made Sushsi and washed down with green tea.
I noticed this pub because of its exotic menu with North African dishes and a choice of gluten-free and organic meals. The atmosphere (pretty quiet) was quite strange and my order was taken up wrong (got a different dish and a half pint of Guinness instead of a normal one). Maybe I was just there at the wrong time of the day (Friday early afternoon?) and encountered some bar staff who disliked my German accent. Anyway, the food was good. I think, it's worth trying it out in the evening, in expectation of a more lively atmosphere. Or just come to try the dishes which are outstanding between all the Wetherspoons and Greene King menus of the town.
In the evening, the Corner House serves as a stage for music gigs which means that the atmosphere is completely different to the one I eoncountered.
The first time I went there, I was showing Cambridge to a Turkish friend. We didn't know that the first place I would invite him for a coffee would be Turkish-run. Avalanche offers quick meals like sandwiches and is a nice place to come in for a tea. Probably not for the atmosphere – it's this typical plastic furniture feeling, but with the raunchiness of a traditional Fish & Chips shop. But the food is good value for the money and the family who runs the business is very friendly.
Panahar seems to wake up pretty late only. It is located in a typical area for going out with some other restaurants, a cinema and a concert venue located nearby. When I went to visit this place at around 6 pm - it was pretty empty. Still, menu and restaurant looked good so I decided to order some food to take away. I had Jurri Chicken and a lot of it. The Bangladeshi owner started a nice chat so that the time until the food became ready passed by quickly. The serving they gave me was really huge and included an even bigger portion of rice. Nevertheless, it tasted so good that I ate it all up. The result was that I had a full stomach for the whole evening and that I kept recommending Panahar to my friends in Cambridge.
Judging from the plastic Shamrocks nailed on the tables, this was probably an Irish pub some time ago. Today, it is a very enjoyable guest house with hotel rooms on the top floor and a good pub at ground level. Next to ales and typical pub meals, the pub offers one of the best Full English Breakfasts in town with “all you can drink” - coffee and tea. Please note that there are restricted kitchen opening times. Both, menu and ale choice, are not large but have an individual touch. Although it is a Greene King – Pub, you wouldn't even notice you are in one.
Evenings are lively and at weekends – when there are jam sessions on Saturdays – the place can become really full. Live bands appear in the pub occasionally too, please refer for that to the latest info from the pub itself. The Earl of Derby has kept its traditional atmosphere and is in walking distance from the rather sterile Cambridge Leisure Centre and the train station area
Favorite Dish: Definitively the Full English Breakfast
It is strange to see something that similar to a family-run countryside pub as “The Mill” in the city centre of Cambridge. It’s the type of pub with a cat sitting on a bar stool, the old lady pulling the tap and home-cooked meals. The pub seems to be quite empty during daytime, especially on winter days. However, when the weather gets better, it can become quite full as it has a garden terrace adjacent to the river cam with a nice view.
A couple of guest ales are always available, although the choice is not really large. I had a choice of different sausages with mash. Other dishes available are the usual pub grubs like chili con carne or fish & chips. Audience is mixed, however on winter afternoons, most of the audience consists of regular costumers, the like you would see in a rural pub as mentioned above… The pub is good for summer afternoon and evenings as has far more character than other riverside pubs like the Anchor or the Granta!
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