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“Hoghtonboy - So this is Home Cooking.”

Walkers' Bar at Macdonald Swan Hotel
Ranked #31 of 45 Restaurants in Grasmere
Cuisines: British
Restaurant details
Preston, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Hoghtonboy - So this is Home Cooking.”
Reviewed 30 July 2013

My partner and I visited this hotel on Thursday last, on a recce to find a suitable place to spend Christmas in the lakes. We were shown around the rooms and accommodation by a lovely, friendly receptionist, who was a credit to the business. The rooms appeared comfortable and clean and we were initially optimistic about the place. After visiting further hotels, we returned for lunch in the bar/restaurant where we ordered meals. I fancied their steak and ale pie but was told that ' it wasn't ready yet' by a barman/waiter in ill fitting uniform. I then ordered cheese and onion pie with chips and veg. My partner ordered fish and chips, two simple meals for any chef or cook. The fish and chips were served on a board and would have been ok for half the price. My cheese and onion pie was disgusting and consisted of quite a good pastry on the outside but inside was a disgusting thin, runny substance and loads of square chunks of potato. There was little evidence of cheese or onion. With a soft drink each, the bill came to Just short of £28. Signs outside advertise home cooking and as we were leaving a lorry from a well known Manchester firm supplying pre-prepared food delivered a load of large cartons of chilled or frozen food. Was this the steak and ale pie perhaps .? Anyway, I didn't complain but considered the money well spent, as we intend spending our Christmas elsewhere.

    • Value
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank George D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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144 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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    Value
    Atmosphere
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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
13 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“A mixed bag!”
Reviewed 28 July 2013

We stayed at the Swan recently and and had a very mixed experience. After twenty years in the hospitality industry, to expect basic good service is surely not too much to ask. The hotel room was very good and the breakfast was excellent. The service was mixed quality ranging from rude to very good depending on the individual. This is not acceptable in the hotel industry where standards and performance measures have to be applied if customers are to want to come back. The management of this hotel need to implement quality as standard, not allowing it to be down to the individual. They also need to be available and read their reviews. As many 'terribles' as 'excellent' tells the story exactly. Shouldn't be difficult to put right.

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Duxoup
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Burscough, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
21 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Very good quality beers”
Reviewed 17 April 2013

This bar is part of the Swan Hotel which is just on the fringes of Grasmere village on the main A591 road. Sometimes, the real ales served in hotel bars can be a bit hit and miss but The Swan seemed to have got it right - during our 2 visits to the bar, we probably tried all the real ales on offer - all were of excellent quality - particularly the Snecklifter....why can't all pubs and bars serve beer of this quality??

A quiet atmosphere, decent staff and dog friendly - very important in the Lake District. There is also an extensive beer garden on one side of the building which would be lovely on those rare warm sunny days in the Lakes :)

We'll be back next year.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank roversfc71
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
UK
Level Contributor
25 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Worth a visit”
Reviewed 13 April 2013

It's been some time since we've visited this bar, many years ago we walked straight out again when we didn't see hand pulled / real ales, I think that's almost unforgivable for a Lakeland bar/pub.

Anyway, they've put that straight, having 3 real ales when we visited. The Sneck lifter was exceptional, easily the best beer we tasted anywhere in Grasmere during our stay.

The bar can be quiet at times, this may work to your advantage if you prefer a bit of peace and quiet compared to, for example, Tweedies in Grasmere centre.

Just one slightly negative point, as this is a busy hotel, sometimes you might find the barman has 'deserted' his post, he'll soon be back, but it can be off putting. Admittedly, this seems to be a common problem with hotels that have public bars.

The outdoor seating is extensive and superb, too cold to enjoy during this particularly cold April.

We haven't eaten in the Swan, but if you like a quality pint, it's definitely worth a visit.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank dodgydd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
33 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Very nice”
Reviewed 3 April 2013 via mobile

After many visits to grasmere, we decided to try the swan, we were pleasantly surprised, however it didn't start great after being told they had run out of the first two drinks we ordered. We ordered the burger, baguette of the day and rib eye steak, everyone really enjoyed it. We even got 10% discount between 6 and 7, would we go again, most definitely yes.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Bluemoonrising12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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