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“Must have been a bad night?”

Deerhill Inn Restaurant
Ranked #8 of 29 Restaurants in Dover
Price range: US$20 - US$50
Cuisines: American, Contemporary
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Description: Deerhill Inn Restaurant offers a warm welcome - candles and log fires in winter, flowers in summer and spectacular views across the beautiful Mount Snow Valley to the tranquil Green Mountains all year round. Chef Joshua's innovative cuisine features fresh, local ingredients and a seasonally-varied menu complemented by a Wine Spectator-awarded wine list. Vegetarian options are always available.
Boston, Massachusetts
Level 4 Contributor
31 reviews
26 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Must have been a bad night?”
Reviewed 23 September 2013

But I doubt it. My partner and I had a reservation for dinner last night -- the Vermont wine harvest dinner special. When we arrived, we were told that they were backed up as everyone had arrived at the same time. We arrived at the time of our reservation.

We had the urge to bolt -- we should have listened to our inner judgment. The place has a chintz-meets Brady decor and a faint mustiness. It is bright and appears to be clean but ... perhaps it makes sense to a dated country-ski area sensibility.

So we were seated in the waiting area where we were offered drinks. Only that when they went to find the beers we ordered, they were warm. So we opted for different ones. We were shown the menu for the evening. Seeing no wine associated with the pairings that we felt anywhere near good about, we asked could we order from their wine cellar and would they adjust the bill for the set menu? I know it sounds picky ... but if you want decent wine..... "Sure, we'll take care of it."

20 minutes later we were shown into a half-full dinning room. Backed-up? Really? Had half of a full room just teleported to avoid passing us on the way out? As we sat down, the couple at the table next to us got up to leave ... clearly they had had some water and had been waiting. Perhaps for anything, but they did not return. This was our second ignored warning.

From the wine list. we picked out a Sean Thackery Orion ... a fairly decent bottle with some age. Also about $150 worth. Our waitress managed to thoroughly stir the sediment back into wine. Nothing like pouring with the wrong side up to ensure the mixing is complete (forget about decanting). If you are going to offer decent wine, learn how to handle it.

20 Mintues later .... first course consisting of a squash bisque. With some sort of greasy base -- the kind that leaves a soapy finish on your lips. A few bites -- although hungry, not this hungry.

20 minutes after the squash was cleared ("was it alright?" ... ermmm "yeah, just fine..") came the next up .. pork belly with some sort of gastrique. The highlight of the meal. Should have made a night of the 1" x 1" cube. Tasty piece of belly.

After a good 45 minutes the proprietress came to announce that she was sorry -- but that they had served our meal to someone else and that she would ensure that our next course would be coming up right away. Really? Was that the signal to stand up, pay for the wine and leave?

The Pièce de Résistance finally arrived ... venison shank. Actually more like a venison stew that managed to have almost desiccated chunks of venison in a mixture of undercooked root vegetables. How do you do that? Inedible. So, I guess they ran out (when they served "our" meal to someone else) and somehow tried to cobbled together a few more portions? Seriously?

Dessert was a pumpkin mousse -- no other options. Really no option at all. In an effort to smooth things over (it is hard to ignore plates that remain essentially untouched and it was now 3 hours since we arrived), they offered us a 1/2 bottle of pinot. Honestly, after all this I did not particularly want to stay around and drink anything -- one of us would have to drive therefore the other would "enjoy" a 1/2 bottle? Given that we had just spent a goodly sum on some decent wine, did we want a $10 pinot half? Ummmm.

And then the bill arrived. Did they balance the removal of the wine pairing -- as promised? No. Full freight plus the cost of the wine we did order. Therefore, we managed to spend $400 on a perfectly inedible meal and a ruined bottle of wine.

The proprietress was nice and the waitstaff friendly. That is about it.

    • Value
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Brett L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
deerhillinn, Owner at Deerhill Inn Restaurant, responded to this review, 8 October 2013
We make every effort to accept negative reviews with perspective and good grace, but unfortunately this review is complete nonsense. These guests seem to have formed a strange and distorted view of their whole evening – or perhaps their review is more about appearing witty and discriminating than actually reviewing the experience of dining in our Restaurant.

We note service times on all our dinner tickets and these two gentlemen did not wait for anything like the time they claim, either to be seated or to be served. Far from leaving without ordering, the people at the next table had finished eating their dinner – which they told us they enjoyed very much – and left to go home just as these gentlemen were seated. No guests departed without ordering and dining – and no guests waited very long, to be seated or to order or to be served. We saw the wine glasses when they were cleared from the table and there was not a trace of sediment in them, contrary to their claims. And of course these gentlemen ordered the bottle of Pinot Noir themselves – we do not just give our diners a random bottle of wine from the cellar! And contrary to their claim that the dining rooms were “half empty”, we were fully booked that night with a long waitlist.

And so on – all nonsense. It does surprise us greatly that, if they had such a difficult experience, they didn’t mention any displeasure to any of us once during the evening. We always give guests every opportunity to tell us how they are enjoying their dinner and wine, and we always pay appropriate attention to any concerns they share with us. They shared none of their concerns with us at any time.

Our dining room certainly was busy that night as we were holding our annual Wine Pairing Dinner, when we partner with a local producer to help support our Vermont wine makers. This year we offered award-winning wines from North Branch Vineyards – greatly enjoyed by all our other guests, as was the Dinner. We were sold out and already have bookings for next year’s event. These particular guests decided the paired wines were not to their taste (despite knowing far in advance that they would be joining us for our Wine Pairing Dinner), but happily they were the only two, out of more than fifty diners, to come to this conclusion. As for the cost, we have more than compensated these guests for any inconvenience, real or imagined, which they believe they suffered.

All we ask, in the end, is that guests judge for themselves – read the reviews by other diners here and on our Deerhill Inn Trip Advisor lodging site – or, better yet, come and join us for dinner and see – and taste - for yourself!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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86 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
New York City, New York
Level 5 Contributor
54 reviews
31 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Best food in the Mt Snow valley”
Reviewed 5 September 2013

We have eaten in just about every "better" restaurants of the area. THis was the best for originality and quality. And yes the view is very nice, although we were there when it was raining ..
Would certainly go back. Service was efficient and friendly and very accommodating when we needed to come a little earlier than usual opening time.

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank ZYX032
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Venice, Florida
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Amazing”
Reviewed 13 August 2013

If you love a fine meal. Do not miss this place. Make a reservation and you will not regret it. Chef and his staff is amazing. Thank you

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank brian s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Longmeadow, Massachusetts
Level 5 Contributor
46 reviews
42 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“One of the Best”
Reviewed 27 July 2013 via mobile

We've now Ben to the Deerhill Inn twice; and I can say that it is easily one of the best places around. Service, while not the synchronized perfection of the White Barn in Maine, is warm and comfortable. Yes, the flatware is somewhat worn, the temperature is questionable (" should we open windows, or worse yet, turn on A/C and incur that expense (YIKES!)), but the food has proven itself to be outstanding! A must "Go!"

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank FoodSavant
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
deerhillinn, Owner at Deerhill Inn Restaurant, responded to this review, 31 July 2013
We greatly appreciate the reviewer's kind comments about our restaurant. Diners do tell us they enjoy our exceptional cuisine, professional service and stunning views of the mountains. However the reviewer's comments about air conditioning and flatware are curious, most likely he is confusing us with another restaurant in the valley! We don't have air conditioning in the restaurant, because we don't require it -- we're situated on a hillside looking out towards the Green Mountains and we have lovely breezes off the Deerfield Valley, plus we have plenty of discrete fans in the dining rooms to keep everyone cool. And we've updated our flatware within the last year so diners should find it to be in excellent condition. In any event, even if some details of the experience were confused, we are pleased to read that our food was so memorable!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lebanon, NH
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Amazing. We will be back.”
Reviewed 9 June 2013 via mobile

We went here on a groupon for a weekend. We got here on a rainy Friday night and we were greeted by the owner. They showed us the inn and our room. We stayed in Orchid and the whole place is nicely arranged and very welcoming.

We had a dinner reservation and we decided on the prix fixe menu (4 course meal. 95 for 2 people). It was wonderful. I had the rabbit confit as an appetizer, then the orecchiette and cheese and a chocolate creme brûlée. My other half had the cheddar and ale soup, the duck breast and the creme brûlée as well. It was wonderful. The only thing is that the cremes brûlées could (should?) have been half that size.

The next day we wanted to go for a hike and Scott (the owner) recommended a very nice one and also recommended a nice loop up to Manchester, vt and back. He printed a map for us and gave us bug spray.

Again our whole stay was wonderful !

  • Visited June 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Julie371
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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