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“Great Night At The Dower House”
Review of The Dower House

The Dower House
Ranked #86 of 607 Restaurants in Bath
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: British
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, After-hours, Breakfast, Lunch, Reservations
Description: The Dower House restaurant at The Royal Crescent Hotel in Bath –if an English hotel and restaurant have a more perfect setting, we don’t know of it. The frontage of the Royal Crescent is a masterpiece of Georgian architecture and the gardens, where The Dower House restaurant is set are leafy, secluded and lovely. Newly refurbished, The Dower House now features an elegant dining room and a super cool bar as well as a sunny terrace and manicured lawns for romantic al fresco dining. Head Chefs Gordon Jones and Mark Brega have created a modern British menu inflected with Asian and Mediterranean influences. Our pick? The French quail tart with creamed leeks and braised Puy lentils with Pommery mustard thyme sauce.
Reviewed 20 August 2014

Had the tasting menu on Sunday night and it was a great experience. Started off with cocktails in the beautiful garden. They mixed a gin fizz for me, even though it wasn't on the menu. They served the drinks with olives and nuts. As it started to get a bit cold, went into the bar where we had some lovely canapés - croquettes with pickled vegetables. It was very nice in the bar and the restaurant staff who brought the canapés and the menus were very attentive. However, I felt the bar staff could have had their eye on the ball a bit more - we had finished our first round of drinks long before the girl from the restaurant sorted out another round for us, whilst the bar staff chatted amongst themselves. This was the only bad point of the evening though.

The tasting menu had 8 courses, most of which were really good and very inventive. One or two of the courses weren't exactly to my taste - not that there was anything wrong with them at all, just a personal thing. However, the service, presentation and quality of the food was very good indeed and the dining room very relaxing. The Social Eating House in London's Soho, which I reviewed recently, could learn a thing or two from The Dower House about creating a good dining atmosphere!

The home made bread was excellent, particularly the sourdough, and was offered freely throughout the meal. Of the eight courses, the absolute highlight for me was the peanut butter first dessert (there were two desserts) and the table smoked salmon was extremely exciting! It is served under a dome, containing very aromatic smoke.

The wines were good and the meal was very nicely finished off with coffee and delicious petit fours served in the lovely drawing room.

This was by no means a cheap night out. The tasting menu costs £72 per head, the bar drinks averaged out at about £14 each, the NZ sauvignon blanc we drank was £40 a bottle. We also had red wine by the glass, but I don't recall what that cost. Large bottles of water were £4 each and coffee and petit fours were £5 per head. Despite this, having arrived at 7pm and not having left until nearly midnight, it was a very interesting and enjoyable way to spend the evening and the hotel and restaurant certainly did themselves proud.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
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    • Food
Thank hrmanager
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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148 - 152 of 261 reviews

Reviewed 16 August 2014

Stayed at the Royal Crescent for one night with my husband for our anniversary. He is vegetarian, I am not. The decision to book and stay was based on the menu available to veggies - its not widely published, they simply say they cater for veggies - so we requested the menu, and duly booked. It an expensive experience to dine at the Dower House, and the mood on a week day evening was refined as opposed to vibrant - we had a drink in the bar first - although off menu the mojito I had was good, and nibbles arrived from the kitchen. They were relatively simply, but nonetheless appealing as a pre-dinner extra. There was then a pre-starter amuse bouche, involving jelly (apparently veggie friendly, we asked, and peas/ mint). To start I had the scallop sashimi which was delicate (as you'd expect) and lovely, and my husband the quinoa with fennel, roasted onion seeds, stilton beignet & walnut oil. The stilton wasn't overwhelming,and apparently it was very good. As my main course I had the lamb served pink - it was good but a little greasy - I should have read the discretion better - it was lamb, sat on top of lamb, with other bits of lamb; and nothing really to cut through the richness. The veggie main was Spelt, red chard, carrots, sherry jelly, hazelnut paste & crumb: I got the chance to taste the cream spelt, and it was truly creamy, but with some bite which gave a nice texture. There was a pre-dessert dessert, and we then had a pineapple cheesecake, and a strawberry & lavender creme brûlée. Its a running joke I always have cheese cake - and I should have done so; it was beautiful - instead I had the creme brûlée - the lavender was possibly a little overwhelmed by the strawberries but it was as expected very good too. FYI: I love food (in case you haven't gathered that), and I'm being possibly over critical!! The service was discrete and efficient, and there is a sommelier on hand if you need. Finally: best wholemeal/rye bread I have EVER had (there are three options, make sure you try that one).

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
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    • Food
1  Thank Caroline H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 August 2014

I don't think we could fault the food here as it was delicious. From the canapés to the petit fours with coffee everything had been thought through to the last detail. Would highly recommend.

Thank Skye82
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 August 2014 via mobile

Really great meal, we eat out everywhere and so far this stands on par with anywhere we've tried. You must have the taster menu

Thank f_wrigh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 July 2014

The Dower House is located through the read garden of the Royal Crescent Hotel. It has a lovely, formal but relaxed feeling to it and is nicely laid out so that you get plenty of space. Service is very good, from the waiting staff to the somelier who will advise on a great selection of wines - not all of which are wallet busters.

Food is a real treat, and the menu is full of very unusual dishes which are clearly designed to impress and wow the diners. The tendancy is towards smaller portions but exquisitely and creatively served - for example, my smoked trout starter came to the table under a glass bell jar filled with real hay smoke, released at the table for full effect.

Despite the smaller portions, you won't go away hungry. Your choices of starter, main and dessert are complimented with amuse bouche, delicious breads, and sometimes a pre-dessert - on this occasion a delicious and fun Peanut Butter Panna Cotta with raspberries served in a miniature jam jar - lip smackingly tasty, and a fun and unexpected part of the service.

Both my wife and I ate the sea bass main, which was cooked to perfection and full of flavour. It came accompanied with a crab "fish" finger which was to die for - Captain Birds Eye standards just aren't going to cut it anymore!

Overall - just a delightful dining experience. The food isn't cheap and so not an everyday meal, but for the quality of food and service, and the sheer creativity and wow factor - it's great value for a special occasion.

Although not the focus of this review, my wife and I have also eaten breakfast here as hotel guests, and whilst more "normal" compared to the dinner menu - quality and value for money is also excellent for breakfast.

Thank ChrisFGB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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