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“Bank holiday pub grub lunch- 4 people, £175?!”

Walkers' Bar at Macdonald Swan Hotel
Ranked #30 of 45 Restaurants in Grasmere
Cuisines: British
Restaurant details
Cumbria
Level 5 Contributor
68 reviews
41 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“Bank holiday pub grub lunch- 4 people, £175?!”
Reviewed 30 May 2011

Reasonable food, drinks, wine and one dessert, for four people but was very expensive! Typical bar food, restaurant prices, as locals will will not go back.

    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Stephh91
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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146 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
West Midlands
Level 6 Contributor
164 reviews
130 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 147 helpful votes
“For that price everything needs to be spot on, and it's not”
Reviewed 17 April 2011

Stopped to eat here on way back from a week's holiday in Borrowdale. We knew it was expensive as we ate here last year too but then it was tip top quality.
We even gave them a second chance this time.
Our 1st visit was midweek this year. There was only one barman serving. He was pleasant but lacked any warmth that would make you want to come back. I supposes we pay for the smart surroundings and his suit and tie. As I am picky, his trousers were miles too long and were ripped at the hem and he had dirty shoes on. Goes against the image doesn't it. There were 6 parties of people eating and they all paid up front as did I each time we ordered. Which took time as the barman was new. He also had to swipe in as he had taken over which also was time consuming. He made numerous unnecessary trips to the kitchen to fetch us a wedge of lemon, 2 people who each wanted butter, to determine what flavour of ice cream they had.
At one point the smart young receptionist came to cover for him except she didn't do anything but put a tray of glasses on the bar. A lady asked her if a certain table was free, she could have said something a bit better than "it looks like it is" .
Our food was excellent, if expensive, then our expressos, were minute and cold so off went the barman to fetch some more.
As we knew the Swan we stopped again on our way home as the location is ideal and to give them another chance as we knew they could do better. Well it was a bit better. This barman, also new, had a bit more about him despite his youth. Though too short for the trousers and massive tie they were not ragged and his shoes were clean.
The smart young receptionist did her usual nothing when she covered, we guessed he had a break this is time. We had a tab this time and all went well till the bill which I queried - twice. They had charged us almost £10 for 2 double expressos which the barman thought was correct. He said that what his till said they were so I showed him the menu done in the style of a book. I guess we paid for that too. He called his boss who gave us a refund with a smile.

    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank MarkMidland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
England
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“£7.95 FOR A GLASS OF WINE?! YOU MUST BE JOKING!!”
Reviewed 21 March 2011

After a lovely day's walking in beautiful countryside, we were looking forward to a refreshing and restorative post-walk glass of wine to finish off a perfect day. Not a chance - not when we were charged £7.95 A GLASS! Even the bar staff were embarrassed and apologised to us. In anyone's language that's a rip-off and we won't be back. As frequent visitors to the Lakes, and supporters of businesses that make us feel valued and welcome, it's your loss because we won't be back. You have a lot to learn about true Lakeland hospitality.

    • Value
Helpful?
2 Thank matthiker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ulverston, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Not a 'souper' experience”
Reviewed 26 November 2010

I had a bizarre lunch experience at The Swan, Grasmere on Nov 25 - took my wife and mother-in-law there for a quick lunch. It was an incredibly cold day and they ordered a warming bowl of vegetable soup - or so they thought. The soup arrived - it was almost cold. We raised this with the waiter - he looked puzzled, asked "You want the soup boiling?". We said yes, we wanted the soup hot, and he took it back. Five minutes later the same soup plates arrived again, they tried the soup, it was unaltered and still almost cold. We explained again that the soup was still cold, and that it needed to be hot. tey took it away and after a further 10 minutes it finally arrived - slightly warmer but at best only lukewarm. However, it was just eatable and as this was supposed to be a quick lunch we accepted it. I had a chicken and bacon club sandwich that was delicious, but one must question a hotel and restaurant in the Lake District in the middle of winter on one of the coldest days of the year that seems incapable of serving basic vegetable soup hot to a customer. Is this some new health and safety regulation to prevent customers sustaining injury, or is it simply incompetence? As for value - two bowls of soup, one bowl of frites (which fortunately kept my guests occupied when waiting for their soup) and a club sandwich for £22 is not extravagant, but it is isn't particularly good value either.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank Trafalgar56
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Scotland
Level 6 Contributor
218 reviews
153 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 151 helpful votes
“Lovely bar let down by the food”
Reviewed 7 August 2010

This bar is part of the Swan Hotel, which also has a restaurant. The bar is nicely decorated and has a very pleasant atmosphere. The barmaid was friendly and very pleasant.
The food was priced at same level as the other restaurants we ate in - The Jumble Room and Tweedies- around £15 for mains. However i did not find the food here as enjoyable. My main of plaice with caper and prawn sauce was just too rich and left an unpleasant after taste. My dessert consisted of tiny apple tarte tatin, tiny crumble, tiny toffeee apple and a parfait with small amount of custard. Not the kind of dessert to get stuck into after a day on the hills! While the separate components were tasty they were just too small. Given that it is called Walkers' Bar, I was surprised the food wasn't heartier.
I would go back to this bar but for a drink rather than food.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Bonniebraes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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