My husband and I made a habit of walking down to the Cromwell Arms on a Sunday evening and having supper. We haven't been able to go in over a year so were looking forward to it this evening. Having walked over 2 miles we were ready for our supper. We decided to sit outside, the gardens are very pretty. We were quite disappointed at the limited Sunday evening menu compared to what we were used to. In the end my husband chose the grilled sardines followed by honey ham, eggs & chips and I went for the soup of the day followed by a caesar salad. When the starters arrived we were both overwhelmed by the very fishy smell of the sardines, my husband had one bite and couldn't eat it, the flesh was really mushy. My soup tasted suspiciously like watered down Heinz tomato soup, no attempt had been made to jazz it up with a few chopped herbs or a swirl of cream, it was served with 2 small slices of French stick (cut some time earlier judging by how dry it was) and although I was given a butter knife, there was no butter. When this was cleared the staff noted that my husband had left his sardines so they told us it would be taken off the bill although they assured us that it had been fresh in the day before (on a Saturday?!) my husband managed about half of his ham, egg and chips, the ham was dry, the eggs swimming in oil and the chips appeared to be oven cooked. My caesar salad should have been renamed crouton salad with a few strips of leaves in too much dressing, I left over half of this. We were asked if we had enjoyed our meal so, very politely, we told them that we were disappointed - they had our loyalty card so could see that we had been regular customers. No comment was made to our remarks. Sadly I doubt we will be rushing back, such a shame as it is a pretty setting and clearly they have spent a lot of money adding rooms etc. It has 4* from AA but it seems to me that they should maybe have a spot inspection. One last word, on our way out we stuck our heads in the restaurant - it was utterly empty, not another customer in sight - oh dear.. perhaps others are disappointed too?
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