Serves meat, veg options available. Sandwich and salad bar located inside the Covered Market. A few veg choices. Price: Inexpensive more-less
Ovo, Lacto, English, British, Salad bar, Non-veg
The Market, Market Street
Oxford, England OX1 3DZ

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First Review by chloecupcakes

Cheapest vegan lunch in Oxford

4 Posted on 09 / 02 / 2013

Located in the Covered Market, the Alpha Bar offers the cheapest vegan lunch in central Oxford. The hot vegan meal of the day (usually some type of curry or chilli) to take away is £4.30. The salad bar is good too with lots of vegan salads (e.g., lentils, chick peas, quinoa, butter beans, cous cous, coleslaw, tomato, greens), as well as hummus, falafel, and baked tofu.

As other reviewers have rightly noted, the major downside of the location in the Covered Market the plethora of butchers, fish mongers, and cheese shops. The same food at Alpha Bar, however, can be found at Will's Deli on Woodstock. Additionally, the vegan hot meal can be found at Vaults and Gardens on Catte Street (although it's more expensive and there are less vegan options).

Save on packaging and bring your own take-away container!

Pros: good value, lots of vegan options, compostable take-away containers
Cons: vegan-unfriendly location, long line-ups at lunch time, smelly/gross location

Best salad bar in Oxford

4 Posted on 06 / 20 / 2013

Oxford doesn't have too many vegetarian options, so it is great to have a vegetarian friendly place in the market like Alpha Bar.

It's mainly a salad bar, primarily vegan, but does offer a vegetarian and meat choice of the day (curries, ratatouilles, chilis etc.).

The salad bar has good selection. I'm not a big fan of the butter beans, but everything else is great. Just make sure to eat the falafel with the hummus, otherwise it can be a bit dry. The lentils, quinoa, and beet/carrot salads are all delicious.

It's over the counter service, with limited seating (and no table service), but the staff are very friendly and also very helpful answering vegan/vegetarian questions about the food.

I should also add that it's reasonably priced. Runs around 7 pounds for a big salad.

With respect to its location (commented on by other reviewers here), while it is close to a butcher shop, you can always access Alpha Bar from the back of the market without walking by the butcher if it really concerns you that much.

Pros: Great food, Friendly service, Good value

This really shouldn't be listed on Happy Cow

1 Posted on 08 / 29 / 2012

Several years ago this was amazing with a father and son carefully offering vegan and veggie choices. The tofu and seaweed was superb. Now it's really no different to any of the other sandwich bars in Oxford.

A real shame

Pros: None
Cons: Dead animals outside

Can you handle the meat?

1 Posted on 10 / 27 / 2009

There is a particularly nice salad bar in the Covered Market, but to get there you have to fight your way through lots of disgusting dead animals hanging up in the butchers shops, as well as tanks full of live lobsters and other sea creatures.

The salad bar isn't really worth it, you'd be better off going to a health food shop or one of the many baguette shops on Broad Street or George Street. Most of them do houmous and salad baguettes. Or you could go to a pizza restaurant for a cheese-less pizza! :)

Pros: Salad bar is ok
Cons: Dead animals!, Smells like meat and fish (offputting!), Better food elsewhere


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Last updated: 2014/01/28


Added: 2007/08/01


Added by: Guest