Planted smartly on Yorkville’s main thoroughfare, The Oxley Public House has arrived in style. This English-style pub is the work of The Queen and Beaver’s Andrew Carter and Jamieson Kerr, who aim to bring pints, chips and pies to the area’s Anglophiles.
Housed in the former Courtyard Restaurant and Bistro space, the building still possesses a fire engine red exterior. Inside, however, the place has been completely revamped thanks to designer Elisa Sauvé, who also worked on the Queen and Beaver. Patrons are now greeted by a minty green paint job, caramel-coloured banquettes and a fireplace with Oxley spelled out on the hearth. In the main eating area downstairs, the walls are covered with large hunting scenes from times of yore; a trip upstairs reveals a pub, fit with charmingly mismatched furniture, a miniature Titanic and framed newspaper clippings of the namesake Frank Oxley, whom fittingly, we found nursing a pint (Carter apparently decided to name the new pub after the former newspaperman, marathon car driver and Queen and Beaver patron because “he represents the greatness of England”). Even the loos received a British once-over, leaving them wallpapered and chandeliered like those of a transatlantic liner.
The lunch and pub menus feature the sort of elevated pub food that has made the Queen and Beaver a downtown fixture in a few short years. Still, the only direct carry-over from the Q&B is the fish ‘n’ chips. Starring citrus-marinated haddock and chips, the dish comes with a homemade spiced ketchup and crème fraîche–based tartare sauce for dipping ($17). Carter’s take on rabbit pie layers braised rabbit between scalloped potatoes, wraps it up in a potato pastry and pairs it with fresh salad ($17). Come Sunday, a family-style dinner served on large platters features roast beef, mashed potatoes and Yorkshire pudding ($26/person). On tap are brews like London Pride, Black Katt Stout and the cask-conditioned Beau’s Beaver River from the Vankleek Hill, Ontario brewery. With both a front and back patio and an unpretentious vibe, The Oxley is sure to give the other Yorkville watering holes a run for their money.