Call The Carpenter's Arms - Black Lion Lane to make a booking on:
Share your thoughts with other diners
Write a review
26 January 2013
My husband and I have been meaning to go to the Carpenter's Arms ever since AA Gill's review and finally made it a week ago. I'm sad to say that it was disappointing. We arrived early to have a drink at the bar (we'd read the Adnams bitter was good); my pint was the last of the barrel and lovely, my husband's was from the new barrel and very cloudy. We waited for it to clear, which it didn't and when we commented, we were told it's the taste not the appearance that matters. I am not sure if die-hard CAMRA fans would agree!
We were originally given a pokey table by the bar which would have meant the staff brushing past one of us on their way in and out of the bar; we asked to be moved and after commenting that all tables were reserved, they did kindly move us.
My husband's starter was lobster and mango salad which was lovely once you'd fought your way through the mounds of rocket. I had the gorgonzola, pear and walnut salad which was good although also a little too green!
My husband chose the rib-eye steak for his main; which confusingly came in two pieces (this was a first in 20+ years of dining out) – the second piece was suspiciously rump-like and tough. I had a starter as my main which was a sweet potato and chorizo quesadilla; lovely but no chorizo! We mentioned these points to be told that they were doing us a favour giving my husband two pieces as the steak was deemed too small so they gave us a second piece, and yes it was rib-eye apparently; to the chorizo query they came out of the kitchen with a bowl of the mix which was held to my face as proof! We ordered but cancelled pudding after waiting 20 minutes as a large party had just ordered.
A real shame; I know customers aren't always right but to have our comments met in this rather confrontational manner wasn't great. I just wish I'd read your readers' reviews before going here!
10 April 2010
Definitely no longer five star!
We expected a really busy, buzzing atmosphere and were a little surprised to find the pub empty except for one other party. Yes there is a recession on; however, people, still eat and eat well, which is what we tried to do.
Despite the surreptitious and initially unexplained substitution of a green salad for a tomato and onion one, our mains were good, as was the service, albeit a little pricey relative to other gastro pubs on the one hand and high street brassieres on the other.
We declined dessert, apart from coffees and a cheeseboard. Where our main courses had certainly been if not superlative then certainly enjoyable in both qualitative and quantitative terms, unfortunately the cheeseboard was somewhat lacking, particularly in the latter quality. I remarked on this to the waitress and was told that ‘it was only for one person’; all things are relevant and doubtless this is true in some circles, but not in mine, or I believe most; one piece was thinner than a well known after dinner mint.
Before the cheese course it is quite probable that we would have made at least one return visit; on leaving and without any real discussion we were all firmly convinced that we would not be.
03 December 2008
Quite disappointing. Booked a few days in advance and were advised that we could have our table (for 6 people) from 8.30, however our order wouldn't be taken until 9pm due to “congestion in the kitchen”. On the night it was nearing 9.45 before our order was taken, so we decided, as we'd consumed quite a lot of wine by that point and it was getting late, that we'd skip starters and head straight for mains to speed things up. After numerous prompts and requests for ETA's our mains finally arrived until 10.30pm!! The waitress was lovely and very apologetic but it is extremely irritating when we were hungry and all had the additional expense of babysitters at home. I calmly complained to our long suffering waitress however she explained that they could not offer a discount as the manager was not authorised to deduct items from the bill to compensate our delay, so they removed the service charge instead…an optional charge in the first place?!? I complained that surely it wasn't fair to penalise the waitress but the response was that this was all they could/ would do. The food was good but surely a professional kitchen charging £13-17 for mains should get thier act in order.
You are requesting to book The Carpenter's Arms - Black Lion Lane for people on at
These offers are optional, and there's no commitment.
By clicking 'complete booking' you agree to the SquareMeal User Agreement