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“2nd time - massive let down”

Darley's Restaurant
Ranked #1 of 92 Restaurants in Katoomba
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$9 - US$47
Cuisines: Australian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Special Occasion Dining
Dining options: After-hours, Dinner, Private Dining, Reservations
Description: Blue Mountains Best Dining Experience | Darleys Restaurant. Our Blue Mountains Restaurant offers modern Australian cuisine which is served in a romantic space that features beautiful stained glassed windows, original ornate fire places, crystal chandeliers and offers guests a breathtaking view of the surrounding gardens and the Jamison Valley. Open: 6.00PM - 10.30 PM : Tuesday to SaturdayA La Carte Menu2 Courses - $95 pp3 Courses - $125 ppNote: Weekends and public holidays - set price 3 courses $125 6 Course Degustation Tasting Menu $160 ppMatching Wines $75 pp
Reviewed 1 April 2014

We dined at Darley's after moving to the Blue Mountains about 6 months ago and it was amazing. Food was brilliant although the alcohol is SO over priced it's quite disgusting. So we were looking forward to returning (seven of us). We dined the 2nd time 4 days ago and it was a massive let down. All the fussing by wait staff does not make up for much smaller meals - and quite tasteless. For the price you would expect the standard to be very high, but alas it was a massive let down and the entire meal with just two bottles of wine cost over $1000 - so hope you have some dosh. I'm guessing the chef from the first time is no longer there and they got a bus boy to cook our meals? Anyway sadly the last experience is what you base it on and we will not be returning. Plenty of other places to eat in the higher Blue Mountains area. Darley's really was a massive rip off and really ruined out night out as we were celebrating. And how they even try to justify the cost of their alcohol is beyond crazy and really disgusting. If they want people to order more wine etc, bring your damn prices down. Better to sell 5 bottles of wine for $50 each then one for $150! Just common sense really.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank Gidgit V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ralf B, General Manager at Darley's Restaurant, responded to this reviewResponded 5 April 2014

Dear Valued Guest,

Thank you for reviewing your recent experience at Darleys Restaurant.

I am disappointed to read that on this occasion you did not enjoyed your night. Our prices are in line with any fine dining restaurant in town, and I am very concerned out your comments re our food.

Lee Kwiez is still our Executive Chef, well known and respected in the industry. No were near to the description you used in your review.

I would like to review your comments further, as there totally not in line with any feedback we get at Darleys. Please contact me on the below email address.

gm@escarpmentgroup.com.au


With thanks,

Ralf Bruegger
Group General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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370 - 374 of 497 reviews

Reviewed 23 March 2014

Based on the many positive reviews written here, I chose Darley's for a special fine dining experience with my boyfriend. However, the cumulation of several below average elements resulted in a disappointing overall experience. I will list the positive and negative features of each course and my overall impression of the restaurant.

Appetiser:

The appetiser was a small glass of kingfish which consisted of an interplay of beautiful, smokey flavours. A great start to the evening but sadly not an indication of what was to come.

Entree:

BF had the pork jowl with scallop- The protein portions of this dish were cooked to perfection, the pork was soft and tender whilst the scallop was plump and juicy. However, the shallot that came with the meal had the roots left on. Moreover, it was clear that it had not been washed properly, as there were dirt particles all over the roots. I can only assume that the chef did not check the plated dish before it came out to our table.

I had the marron, which recently replaced the Morton Bay Bug as the seafood entree. The marron was not deveined, very watery in texture and lukewarm at best.

Main Courses:

BF had the wagyu beef ($10 upgrade): Once again, the protein was cooked amazingly, with the meat having that 'melt in your mouth' texture. However, the seasonal vegetables proved to be a major let down, with the carrots being very undercooked/borderline raw along with the onion,. The vegetables needed to be blanched properly, as BF ended up sawing through the carrots with his knife before leaving them on the side of the plate as they were basically inedible.

I had the duck breast which was lovely, warm and filling, with the meat cooked perfectly once again. The chicken liver pate was the highlight of the dish, due to the outstanding flavour and effective coupling with the brioche texture.

Dessert:

BF had the chocolate mousse w salted caramel and popcorn ice cream which had the ideal balance of saltiness and sweetness. A very tasty and lovely dessert.

I had poached pear in jelly with raspberry ice cream, a recent addition to the menu which proved to be very disappointing. It was boring and bland- the pear had absolutely no flavour and honestly tasted like a pear out of a supermarket can. Furthermore, I ordered a dessert wine which arrived in a glass with chipped rim which had to be sent back.

Overall atmosphere and service:

The table service was unobtrusive, with courses arriving in a timely manner, although there were several times where our water glasses were left unfilled for just that touch too long. The subtle, somewhat reserved atmosphere was broken towards the end of the meal by a couple deciding to not only answer a Facetime call and chat loudly for 10 minutes about how drunk they were, but then ring another friend to Facetime with them as well. What was most unbelievable was the fact the maitre d actually joined in the conversation rather than asking them to respect other patrons by toning it down bit.

Furthermore, we were given the wrong bill at the end of the night, as the waiter 'forgot' to put items on there and came back to the table with the altered bill. This should not happen at a silver service restaurant.

I have eaten at several other regional hatted restaurants, including the now closed Restaurant II in Newcastle and the Old George & Dragon in Maitland, which both represented far better value for money with faultless food and service. Although the pork jowl, scallop, duck and beef were cooked flawlessly, the lack of attention to detail and inconsistent standards within the meal proved Darley's to be a vastly inferior experience. I'm not one for negative reviews but when you are paying $125 per head on a Saturday night, you do not expect dirty roots, undercooked/raw vegetables and chipped wine glasses. We will not be returning.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
6  Thank thesleepydoormouse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ralf B, General Manager at Darley's Restaurant, responded to this reviewResponded 5 April 2014

Dear Valued Guest,

Thank you for reviewing your recent experience at Darleys Restaurant.

I am disappointed to read that on this occasion you did not enjoyed your food and the service we are known for. Both our Maitre D and Lee our Executive Chef are investigating your concerns to find out what went wrong.

I hope you accept my apologies, and to discuss your comments in greater detail would like you to contact me on the below email address.
gm@escarpmentgroup.com.au


With thanks,

Ralf Bruegger
Group General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 March 2014

As a repeat customer I hope our experience was an exception rather than a new trend.

We went on Valentine's Day, and the restaurant was surprisingly not that busy.

The decor is lovely, and stylish. The views from the Veranda if you are lucky enough to get a seat there are excellent.

The food was good to excellent as always, but it was a set 5 course menus for Valentines, which we were aware of but not all dishes were to both our tastes. There were matching Alcoholic beverages at an additional cost if you were interested. We were not, and had stated so in the booking and on the phone when I called and confirmed the booking. Nor did we want the complimentary sparkling wine on arrival, of which they had been previously advised.

We were sat in the back corner near the entry we had no view, which fortunately in our case was not an issue as we were staying in the hotel and had one there.

The young waitress upon seating us immediately began to poor sparkling wine. When I politely told her we did not want it. She seemed confused "But it's complimentary?", when I restated our wishes she responded "poor thing" and stalked of "tut tutting" to herself. We later heard her ask, of another dinner a couple of tables down, if he was the designated driver when he too declined alcohol service, and walked off shaking her head. Surely peoples life style choices are their own business and not to be judged by the restaurant staff. Would a vegetarian be chided for not ordering the Venison?

The serving staff tended to "hover" and clean-up was slow and awkward. "Sorry to interrupt" became the wait staff motto for the evening.

Having been enjoyed our experience at the restaurant previously, and always had exceptional service, it proved disappointing.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Paul D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ralf B, General Manager at Darley's Restaurant, responded to this reviewResponded 4 April 2014

Dear Valued Guest,

Thank you for reviewing your recent experience at Darleys Restaurant.

I am disappointed to read that on this occasion we did not meet your expectation. We are known to provide great customer service, and failed on this occasion. I hope you will accept my apologies and rest assured I will together with my Food and Beverage Manager analyze what went wrong as at no point you should have been questioned about your choice to have a drink or not.

If you would like to discuss this matter further, please feel free to contact me on gm@escarpmentgroup.com.au


With thanks,

Ralf Bruegger
Group General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 March 2014

We have travelled overseas extensively and we have decided that it was the nicest meal we have ever eaten. The staff were excellent. Thank you

Thank Esther P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ralf B, General Manager at Darley's Restaurant, responded to this reviewResponded 4 April 2014

Dear Valued Guest,

Thank you for reviewing your recent experience at Darleys Restaurant.

It’s a pleasure to read that you had a great experience, and enjoyed the Facilities and our team that looked after you.

With thanks,

Ralf Bruegger
Group General Manager
gm@lilianfels.com.au

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 March 2014

Excellent food and wine list. Very cosy and intimate.
Service is excellent and a very short stroll back to Lilianfels

Thank RubySunday19
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ralf B, General Manager at Darley's Restaurant, responded to this reviewResponded 4 April 2014

Dear Valued Guest,

Thank you for reviewing your recent experience at Darleys Restaurant.

It’s a pleasure to read that you had a great experience, and enjoyed the Facilities and our team that looked after you.

With thanks,

Ralf Bruegger
Group General Manager
gm@lilianfels.com.au

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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