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|Address:||Pennyhill Park Hotel, London Road, Bagshot, Surrey GU19 5EU|
|Price: £55.00||Wine: £20.00||Champagne: £48.00|
|Opening Hours:||Wed-Fri 12.30-2pm, Tues-Sat 7pm-9.15pm (Fri-Sat -9.30pm)|
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Our first visit on a quiet Thursday for lunch. We enjoyed our food, the service was pleasant, initially timely though it did slow down rather too much, and whilst the premises are a bit Henry Viii for my taste, at least there was an atmosphere. Despite this we regard the restaurant as enigmatic, for reasons we'll come onto
We each chose a 3 course set lunch, though several more small dishes made an appearance between all this. I enjoyed my veal sweetbread-based starter, my lamb cooked various ways main course, and my fashionably deconstructed lemon meringue pie for dessert. There is a little dissonance between the modern cooking and the very traditional- almost medieval – look of the place. But no doubt about it, they can cook here, so why am I not more enthusiastic?
Well on the one hand £32 for a set lunch of this standard is about right; the wine list is decently valued and there are some (relatively) lower cost options. So then why do they charge a whopping £6.50 for a cup of tea ? And whilst I don't expect massive platefuls of food of this richness, the courses we paid for were quite a bit smaller than I'd expected (and I do have a lot of experience on which to built those expectations). Frankly everything we ate here would have fitted onto a medium sized plate. It just strikes me as unnecessary and shortsighted to risk sending customers away still hungry when its so easy and cheap to avoid it.
And then there's the menu. We reserved well in advance and kept an eye on the menu beforehand. Then on the morning of our visit , some of the better dishes disappeared and were replaced by choices that seemed a lot less interesting. When we got there, the menu given wasn't the same as that put on the website that very morning, and again still more of the most interesting dishes were missing to be replaced by choices less interesting. We ended up not being able to eat either the starters or the main courses we'd notionally picked out.
Now I do understand that the web menus are just a sample and that they have the right to make alterations. I'm much less concerned by the fact of a change than by the fact that we thought they were changes for the worse. Now I don't know the answer to this so you can choose. Was this just a bit of bad luck, or a marketing ploy to get people in by offering a range of attractive dishes that they don't feel obliged to deliver? As I say I don't know, though the menu that appeared on the site last Thursday (and not what we were offered ) is still up on Sunday as I write this. Either way it does irritate and may well prevent me from returning- as it has done with another 2* restaurant in the West End. Note than if you book a car rental and they don't have your car grade when you show up, you're offered an upgrade. Nobody suggests giving you a worse car for the contracted price.
So an enigma; perfectly decent food, somewhat spoiled by things they shouldn't feel the need to do. We're short of really nice food in this area and its a pity that this one just comes up a little short . Sorry.