I've lived in Oxford for almost two years now, long enough to have favourite local spots. I figure it'd be nice to do little profiles of the places I hang out, the shops I frequent, a general "where I spend my money and time in Oxford" series. I'll try to keep it to interesting local places, so don't worry, I won't be going on about my weekly Sainsbury's shop!
However, having mentioned my weekly shop, I may as well start with a couple of places at which I spend my grocery budget. These are both in the Covered Market, so are not exactly hidden gems!
Feller's is an organic butcher which has been partially responsible for my starting to eat birds and mammals again. I stopped in college and for more than ten years, pretty much stuck to a veggie diet at home, with fish and seafood thrown in if eating out (too lazy to cook fish at home, basically). They sell what I like to call "happy" meat- conscientiously-raised, local if at all possible. They seem to know their stuff, and I love that, in season, they display carcasses, in fur and feather, outside the shop. Currently they have deer and hares hanging up. I find it helps me to remember that meat comes from an animal that was slaughtered for this- that their lives and deaths are my concern.
On the other end of the scale:
One of the two greengrocers I buy from in the Covered Market. Back when I was unemployed and living closer to town, I was at the greengrocers two or three times a week. Now, of course, Saturdays are the only possible times I can shop there and my visits and spending have correspondingly dropped off. We buy most of the basics from the Co-op across the road now, but I still go to the greengrocers for certain items when they are in season: strawberries, broad beans (favas, for the non-Brits), which I buy by the kilo (I love broad beans- we're going to grow some in the garden, but we'd have to turn the whole garden over to them to satisfy me), English asparagus, which, again, I buy by the kilo during their short season. I also stop off and check out what they have as a matter of course if I'm in the Covered Market for any other reason, and will often pick up something that looks particularly good or interesting. (Our Co-op is great, but I struggle to find anything that isn't the standard potatoes, cabbages, carrots, onions, etc.)