Ate here on a Monday night as we were in Norfolk for a two night break, this was meant to be the highlight of the trip, tasting menu, Michelin star restaurant, beautiful location.
Now, i cant fault the food, the menu was 8 courses, all cooked fantastically, wonderful flavours, gorgeous presentation, and as i am a VERY fussy eater it is very rare i say this! The location was very pretty, nice big building, clean & simple.
Moving on to what i thought really let the place down, and made the evening memorable for all the wrong reasons, was the service. When we walked through the door, no one on reception just a girl wandering around, after establishing that we had a table for two, we where told to lead the way to the lounge, bearing in mind we had never been there so had no idea where it was, we noticed that all the guests where asked what they wanted to drink before they even sat down, so obviously got their drinks fairly fast, however we wanted to look at the drinks list, after 2 mins we had chosen and didn't get to order for another 5 mins, the drinks took ages to come, and i cant say i was a huge fan of the Bellini i was given, lumpy bits of peach puree (homemade?) floating about! however my partners Mosocow Mule was lovely (although there was no garnish and it was served in a whiskey tumbler)
We ordered some wine, and was then informed that they didn't have the wine we wanted, not a big issue, i understand sometimes as an establishment you run out of stock, but at least 2 other tables were informed that they didn't have the wine they wanted either (different ones to what we ordered)
Everyone sat at their tables at the same time, not great but i didn't mind too much, the sommelier came over with the wine (GORGEOUS WINE!) and without asking if it was the right one, or if we wanted to try it, poured it for us, and left leaving it backwards so we couldn't even see the label. (this was the last time we saw the sommelier, he never came to pour our wine again) the water at the table was not poured for us either, and normally I don't mind, but at the prices we were paying i did expect to be looked after.
Food was beautiful, however the staff had trouble explaining what they were to us as they where all so nervous and couldn't get their words out.
at the end of the meal i clearly let the waiter know that we wanted 15 mins before coffees and petit fours (all the food had come out with barely 5 min breaks in between) as we wanted to go for a cigarette. all fine. however on return we discovered that our wine glasses had been cleared and the wine chucked away! it was replaced, but with a much cheaper house wine.
i mentioned all this to the only good waiter there on departure (lovely young man, a shining light in amongst all the other terrified staff, just wish we could have been served by him more) and he informed me that all the staff were weeks new, fair enough, but as a Michelin star place you would expect them to hire people that know what they are doing... overall, i feel that this evening was average, and not of the Michelin standard i had expected.. (or the price)
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