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“Generally decent food but poor service”
Review of White Hart

White Hart
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Ranked #50 of 95 Restaurants in Totnes
Cuisines: British
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Restaurant details
Good for: Child-friendly
Dining options: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Full Bar, Highchairs Available, Outdoor Seating, Parking Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Worcestershire, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
148 reviews
55 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 210 helpful votes
“Generally decent food but poor service”
Reviewed 27 May 2014

The attitude and lack of awareness of many of the waiting staff and their ability to get orders wrong outweighed the pleasure of eating here on two of four occasions. They are either badly trained or just plain slovenly, a shame because Dartington Hall is a beautiful place and the food with one breakfast exception was good .... when it eventually came.

Visited May 2014
Thank Natali A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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162 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Exeter, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
137 reviews
45 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 84 helpful votes
“More veg next time please!”
Reviewed 19 May 2014

Good evening meal, beautifully presented, but needing double the quantities of vegetables please, or maybe a complimentary roll and butter.

Breakfast was wonderful.

Have had better service - we waited about eight minutes to be seated when we had reserved our table, and actually just sat at the same table for breakfast as no one about to ask.

Visited May 2014
Thank KimM750
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
50 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“One of the poorest eating experiences I have had in a long time”
Reviewed 27 April 2014

Disappointing beyond measure!
We had come here as a special meal for our tenth wedding anniversary and so this was especially sad!

We were placed on a ridiculously small table, ideal for a single person, perched in front of the fire place, which although unlit made us feel as if we were not really welcomed to begin with. The menu was lovely to read but we were hurried through the process with constant returning to the table and no visual clues being taken.
We eventually opted for '21 day dry aged 8oz ribeye steak from Gammin Farm Ipplepen, truffle oil, wild mushrooms, roast beef tomatoes, triple cooked chips, watercress £20.95 (Gluten Free)' I asked for my steak medium rare and my husband asked for his rare. Both were blue, served on cold stone platters, a single flat mushroom, half a tomato, no oil at all and soggy chips. I asked for mustard, took 7 minutes to come, by which time my steak was even colder.
We were asked if the meal was OK - we said no and explained why and were told that chef would be informed - no sorry, option to cook meat further etc....
Pudding: I had a chocolate pudding served with chocolate sauce and vanilla ice cream,. The ice cream was butterscotch, the sauce and pudding looked like something I would leave in my fridge as left overs ready to be heated up next day and the bowl was gigantic. Everything else had been somewhat twee until this point to so receive an enormous bowl with pudding and sauce already over it with a splodge of ice cream on the side was odd. My husband had a brulee with burned sugar (not caramelised) a lovely shortbread biscuit and then served on a tile that had been splodged with a mango coulis (not on menu and didn't go with the baileys brulee). Again we were asked if it was OK and we said not - no response.

We were utterly disappointed and will not be returning. The service could have redeemed the situation a bit, a warm welcome would have helped but I really think that they feel they are sitting pretty and so don't have to make an effort and my hard earned cash will not be going that way again!

  • Visited April 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank Purplepawpaw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brighton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
114 reviews
63 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 91 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 April 2014

After my ramble about Dartington Hall Hotel, now it is the turn of The White Hart.

Again, I lived in the Torbay area for over a decade and so am very familiar with Dartington Hall Estate. The grounds and views are truly fabulous, so hence, why on earth are they not really cashing in by providing a really good restaurant service for hotel guests (hostel guests!!!) and visitors alike. I recall the days of eating here while working at Foxhole; used to be fabulous.

I think some must just fall in love with the location and feel so loved-up and relaxed that the easy going restaurants approach is somehow trendy, as we were told the restaurant was always busy! But its really not that good. I live in Hampshire and am fortunate to dine in some of the best restaurants so am familiar with good food, how places are marketed and pricing structures; and this place is simply not ticking the right boxes in all areas.

After the disappointed of the dirty hotel and 'private bathroom' scenario, we decided to at least sit in the sun and enjoy the view from outside the White Hart. Most of the chairs from the terrace were missing; scattered across the lawns… alongside glasses, bottles, waste left by other visitors. This was still on the lawn some two hours later.

Grabbed some chairs covered in bird pooh; had to ask to have the table cleaned… this was covered in pooh too. Not sure if there was supposed to be waitress service outdoors but we got tired of waiting and went inside to order coffees; another long wait. Coffee when served not that warm… but didn't feel like complaining as we were so fed up.

Had a table reservation for 7.30 for four people; was beginning to dread it after the disappointment of the hotel side ie. dirty, so what are the kitchens like etc.

Told the restaurant was busy, but it wasn't! Perhaps the more negative reviews on here truly show what is happening here.

The White Hart lacks atmosphere… don't recall music etc. The waiting staff are okay, but not overly attentive. Get flustered too easily; seem a little disinterested in the guests.

The chairs and tables are all mismatched, which I don't mind… very casual, but no cushions to offer some comfort or ease backs on hard surface. Very sparse in appearance and lacking that comfortable country pub feel.

The menu doesn't attempt to boast any local food or produce. No mention of Sharpham cheese or other local produce such as the lovely organic meat that is flavoured with moorland heather, which seems a bit obvious for such a prime location restaurant. No staff trying to tempt you with local food knowledge or local food produce, which is a shame and something this place has no excuse to not be doing due to its fantastic location with a hoards of local food produce!!! Why oh why? This is surely the most marketable aspect of such a brilliant location!!!???

The menu was varied and okay. I had a fishcake starter; okay, a bit on the cool side.

A lamb tagine, with flavourless couscous, but the meat was tender.

A baileys creme brûlée, which tasted more of vanilla, was pleasant but nothing to write home about.

Portions small, so a little hungry after and I'm on a strict health regime! Did let my hair down a little! Not cheap either; can't say it was value for money sadly.

Staff thought ginger wine went in a brandy and ginger mixer drink!

The champagne was not chilled enough; so had to eat starter before it was cool enough to drink.

There is so much more this fabulous location restaurant could do. Strongly suggest working more with local producers and/or promoting this fact as it isn't obvious. If this is already the case, brag about it and get the staff to promote the food.

  • Visited April 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Sally E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Poole, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 April 2014

As we stayed at Dartington Hall, had breakfast in the White Hart. This was very disappointing, the staff were struggling to cope, and the full range of hot breakfast items were not available, took an age for our pot of tea to arrive too! Providing breakfast as part of a hotel stay should not be that difficult and I think their basic problem is poorly trained staff. I deliberately chose not to eat an evening meal here because I had read earlier adverse reviews but I had hoped breakfast would not be too great an issue - unfortunately this restaurant does not appear to be able to competently provide a good service for even this basic meal.

  • Visited April 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Marie T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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