We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

“Once is Not Enough” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of St John's Place

St John's Place
Ranked #3 of 30 Restaurants in Hay-on-Wye
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: British, Welsh
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special Occasion Dining
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Bristol, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
81 reviews
46 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
“Once is Not Enough”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 August 2014

Aperitif, appetiser, starter, main, wine, dessert and coffee...every item was well-chosen and well-prepared - interesting, different, well-thought-out homemade combinations of textures and flavours. Julia starts on Monday with her suppliers' telling her what is fresh and available. She designs the compact menus, three choices in each category, and spends the next three days preparing for her Thursday-Saturday opening. Reservations stagger entry by half an hour for each of the small number of tables - handmade and simple, like the décor. Animal masks by CircoGringo's local designer Cassie watch the fun.
We were four so ordered everything on the menu - meat, fish and veggie. Much swapping and tasting went on. Every course was a delight. We were there 6-9.30 without feeling rushed or bored. £165 for 4 including the aperitifs and two bottles of wine - well-priced at £18. We could have splashed out and spent £22 a bottle, but the organic Touraine Sauvignon was perfectly fine. A memorable meal.

  • Visited August 2014
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
2 Thank SouthendEnthusiast
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review

136 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    117
    14
    3
    2
    0
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Brecon, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Sublime!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 August 2014

Our fourth visit to this little gem of a restaurant in Hay on Wye. Julia, the chef, is hugely talented and her unique and individual style makes the whole experience a real treat. The food is some of the best I've ever had, the ambience of the restaurant is a delight, the staff welcoming and the food.....did I mention how superb the food is? Let Julia take you on a taste experience, trust her combinations of flavours and dive into an evening of culinary delight. The restaurant is only open Thursday - Saturday so booking is essential.

  • Visited August 2014
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
2 Thank Sara B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
16 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Amazing Restaurant”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 August 2014

Delicious, very unusual food. Everything to like and nothing to dislike. A very small restaurant so booking essential.

Visited July 2014
Helpful?
2 Thank Vanessa B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Best chef in a small restaurant”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 August 2014

We were recommended to eat here by The Bear (see reviews) for the first night of a long weekend, and immediately rebooked then for a second meal on the short weekly menu. The food is wonderful and the atmosphere in a small dining room is really great, not least because the talk about food crosses tables. The wine list is as compact as the menu and asking about which red wine to have with a monkfish main course involved several opinions, including the chef's own. Beware though that sharing a starter can be a good option if you want to reach dessert/cheese - otherwise you'll simply have to go again like we did!

  • Visited July 2014
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Anthony M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brighton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
209 reviews
170 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 109 helpful votes
“A whine about the wine”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 July 2014 via mobile

This place is hopefully destined for great things, they have a lovely venue and nicely decorated. Local endorsement for this relatively new establishment are strong, the town deserves this classy venture to succeed. Open Thursday thru the weekend, booking is recommended due to reputation, relatively few covers and it's position as the gormet option in town. The front of house staff member was pleasant and capable despite relative newness to the role. The starter and mains are an eclectic choice, which I understand change regularly, of a meat, fish and vegetarian option. We enjoyed swapping each other's starters both preferring the alternative, I found the duck with berries a little too tart, whereas the monkfish main was excellently cooked and plentiful albeit I couldn't taste or see the anchovies in the dish, however the olives and substitute ingredients were to my taste albeit perhaps not everyone's. The wine menu was similarly brief however the selections were not always suitable for food pairing. The white we chose was too zingy/sharp for food and the red was served from storage in the kitchen and so was hot to the touch, we didn't drink either. With a little expert assistance the wines could really set this menu alight, currently they risk dragging it down. The cost was removed from out bill without issue. Service was tardy and other diners commented as such, I sense the changing menu may be overly pressuring the clearly skilful chef. I'll return again and fully expect a better experience.

Helpful?
Thank fairycake73
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers who viewed St John's Place also viewed

 

Been to St John's Place? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing