Tiptree Jam

Food & Drink in Colchester

Colchester Brewery

Eat & Drink in Colchester

Colchester's bustling town centre is lined with fantastic places to eat & drink. The wider Colchester area is also scattered with traditional tea rooms and pubs, as well as award-winning restaurants.

The local area is famous for it's oysters, which you'll find served fresh from their beds at various seafood restaurants in Mersea Island.

In nearby Tiptree, Wilkin & Sons have been producing their jam and preserves by royal appointment for over 100 years. Why not treat your self to a cream tea at one of our local tearooms?

From traditional English food in wooden-beamed restaurants to pints of local Colchester ale in a trendy bar before you head off for some evening entertainment, a good holiday comes topped with good food – so come and find the best places to dig in!

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Colchester Oysters

Colchester and nearby Mersea Island are world-famous for their Oysters, which have been grown here since Roman times and considered by many to be the finest in the world.

If you wish to try the Oysters for yourself we recommend a trip to Mersea Island, where you will find several fine seafood restaurants, although you will also discover Oysters on the menu at many restaurants in Colchester Town Centre.

The annual Oyster Feast, held on the last Friday in October and dating back to 1845, is now an invitation-only occasion for civic dignitaries and their guests, although you will often find other Oyster themed occasions held throughout the year such as the Oyster Fair in Castle Park, and opening of the fisheries on the first Friday in September.
Mersea Oysters
Mersea Island Oysters

Tiptree Jam

Wilkin & Sons have been producing Jam in the village of Tiptree since 1885 and the brand is well known all over the world. They have held a Royal Warrant since 1911 and are perhaps best known for their unique 'Little Scarlet' Strawberry.

The site in Tiptree contains a tearoom and small museum dedicated to the history of the company. From May to August guided tractor tours of the fruit farms run on selected dates.

As well as their tearoom in Tiptree, Wilkin & Son also operate further tearooms in the borough of Colchester: The Batte Lay tearoom is based in the Minories Art Gallery in the centre of Colchester, and the Essex Rose tearoom can be found in the village of Dedham in the heart of Constable Country.
Tiptree Jam with Cream Tea
Little Scarlet Jam, made by the world-famous Wilkin & Son Tiptree Jam makers

Visit a Tearoom or the Farm

Vegan and Vegetarian

Colchester has a wide range of Vegetarian and Vegan options when it comes to dining.

Whether its wholefood Vegan you are looking for or just want to try something a different, Colchester has something for everyone.

The Nourish Co offers 100% Vegan food or for something a little different try some Syrian food at Falafel and More or something Lebanese at Albatta
If you have more of a sweet tooth try Caffe Sala for some amazing Vegan cakes and Shakers Diner for dairy free icecream and shakes.

The Old Siege House, Bill's , wagamama or The Centurion offer a good selection of Vegan and Vegetarian options.

Vegan and Vegetarian Dining

Food & Drink Events

There's plenty to experience in Colchester for the seasoned foodie. Besides the assortment of restaurants, cafes and pubs open all year round you'll find a selction of food-related events happening throughout the year.

From small speciality tasting sessions through to huge fairs why not plan your visit to coincide with some of these delicious events?

You'll discover regular Farmers markets and beer festivals as well as quirkier events, from talks by famous foodies to tractor tours of the Tiptree farm that produces Wilkin and Sons.

Restaurants, Cafes and Pubs


Explore Colchester’s restaurants on an evening meal out for two, or a family weekend lunch. With local and international cuisine, you can find everything from fish & chip shops and Italian pizza places, to seafood restaurants and gourmet dining.

Colchester has lovely independent restaurants where you can taste delicious meals made by local chefs. If you’re wondering where you can try oysters in Colchester, head on over to Mersea Island for the best oysters in England.


Cafes & Tearooms

Lovely tearooms in Colchester can be found in some of the best locations. Choose to have your cuppa right in the heart of the town in historic buildings, or out in the countryside surrounded by greenery and gardens.

Colchester’s town centre is a hotspot for cafes and coffee shops, where you can grab a takeaway coffee or sit down for tea and cake. Many of Colchester’s cafes have free wifi, and are a perfect place to stop off in between shops or sightseeing.

Pubs, Inns and Bars

The best place for a pint or great English pub food are the quirky and wonderful pubs in Colchester. Discover a unique Wetherspoons Pub located in an old theatre, with the original balconies and theatrical backdrops or you can find pubs in Tudor buildings whose wooden beams and crooked walls give you the real vintage feel, and pubs with great beer gardens – some even back onto the Roman wall!



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Beer Festivals

Upcoming Farmers Markets