The Oxford Tavern has been redone: Petersham’s new loved local

Oxford Tavern

From trivia on a Tuesday, to taco Wednesdays to a smoker out the back called Black Betty, the Petersham haunt that is the Oxford Tavern has something going on in the inner West, all its own.

Oxford Tavern Petersham flat

It’s been taken over by brotherly duo, James and Josh Thorpe who’ve kept things as they were back when the joint used to be a strip club, just removed a bit of the sleaze.

It’s dark, but welcoming, relaxed and fun, with the classic “Hot Live Girls” neon sign on the street, illuminated nightly. Though now, it says “Hot Live BBQ”.

The rear courtyard is huge, comfy, comes complete with a little grotto-like nook that’s been fairy-lit and padded seats at group tables for couple who’re after somewhere secretive to hide away in, or large gatherings ready to try any of the Tav’s brews a go.

Oxford Tavern yard

The Thorpe boys have prided themselves on their ability to source and sell some of the most unique, local ones out there. Primarily from Sydney, if a brewed beverage is your thing, then ticking this place off your list should take prime position.

Oxford Tavern Petersham nachos

They’re going with a ‘hyper local’ take – brews that aren’t from further afield than 5 kilometres – and have done it well so far. The Thorpe brothers are big believers in supporting independent local businesses, breweries and distilleries and see Indie producers as the driving force of quality and innovation in the industry, which is why the Oxford Tavern is the only pub in the Inner West that exclusively sells independently owned beer brands.

The Oxford Tavern even has a new head chef, a guy called Neil Mundie. He’s a master with meat and has put the old smoker out the back, Black Betty, back to work, pumping out comfort food like you’ve not had this close to central Sydney before.

Mudie smokes 200kg of meats every weekend, sometimes starting at 4am in the morning, to ensure the meats are smoked for 10-12 hours before hitting customers plates.

Oxford Tavern smoker

Going into winter, some of their wintry staple menu items are as good for the soul as they are bad for the heart, but it’s damn well worth every bit. Think beef brisket burgers with house coleslaw, smokey BBQ sauce, jack
cheese and pickled jalapeƱos followed by smokehouse nachos of select meats, slow cooked to deliciousness with jalapeno salsa, sour cream and guacamole. It’s a good time.

They’ve also got the usuals on the menu for those who’re after something more staple.

Complete with live music, a range of pub classic activities on offer and a central, buzzing and easy-to-get-to location, the Tav is a local, redone, that you hope will never go away.

See more about it at the Tav’s website.

Oxford Tavern Petersham gin