My family and I attended the Walpole Bay Hotel restaurant on 17th April 2014. My grand parents surname is Walpole and we thought it a perfect location for their Diamond wedding anniversary dinner. My grand parents had spoken about the hotel as they had visited it back in the 50's shortly after they were married, again another reason to go, or so we thought. A table was booked for 7 pm and strangely we were told to arrive at 615 pm? Apparently this was to enable us to have drinks beforehand. I have never heard of this before, surely you can decide if you want a drink before your meal?!?! Anyway we arrived at 7 pm and there were not any members of staff to be seen so I kind of wandered around and made my way to the dinning room where a woman came up behind and me and asked what I was doing? I didn't think this was the correct way to address as guest but hey. I informed her my family and I had a table booked. She told is to take a seat in the "bar area" and gave us menus, there was no one behind the very small bar. After a short while a waiter came out and asked if we were ready to order to which I said we wanted to order some drinks first to which he replied "yeah ok, if you come up to the bar"! Was not impressed.
Whilst sitting in the "bar area" I looked down at my hands and to my horror they were black, the only place that it could have come from was the dirty Chesterfield I was sitting on. My hands were spotless as I had just been to the loo. Yuck.
After ordering our drinks, from the bar, the waiter brought the wine over. He didn't open the bottles, offer to taste or even pour glasses- he simply put them on the table and walked away.
After sitting in the bar area for about 45 minutes we were told our food was ready. My partner ordered the black prawns at a price of 8.95. The price isn't the issue what so ever but then you get just 2 small over cooked prawns I think that's horrendous, especially when 2 weeks later I was in Covent Garden in London and had a huge pile of prawns for less! I had mussels which were tasty but so many broken bits of shells in the bottom of the bowl made it like a mine field. The main courses were just terrible. I had cod wrapped in bacon and I am not exaggerating when I say the 2 pieces of cod I had were 3 inches by 2 Inches and so dry they were in edible. My partner and mum had fish and chips which had to be sent back twice as it was stone cold and just a mess. Of the two steaks one was sent back because it was far to undercooked on its return it was then inedible due to being totally cremated. The 2 lamb shanks had hardly any meat on.
The owner was apologetic but to be honest I don't think it appropriate to rub a customers back and ask how the replacement food was. I dont think she understood how disappointed we were and was just flapping about barefoot going from the dining room to the ktichen then to reception. I don't think that it is appropriate to be barefooted whilst in a restaurant as the owner/ Maitre D. When we complained all the owner offered was to take the price of one steak and one fish and chips off the bill.
All of us left hungry, disappointed and throughly let down. What was supposed to be a wonderful evening in surroundings that reminded my grand parents of their early married days was totally ruined.
In a few words the Walpole Bay may be vintage but in my opinion the only people who will enjoy the food here are people who don't have taste buds and don't think customer service is important... Oh so that is no one them!