We’d been wanting to visit this French Brasserie which is situated in our neighbouring town of Elm Park after hearing some great feedback from friends about the quality of the food. We had also heard that the service which although is friendly could be better. Therefore with this in mind we decided to try it for a Sunday Lunch. So yesterday we took a 30 minute stroll to Elm Park to see for ourselves. When we entered we were greeted by owner Helen who just asked if we’d booked and when we said yes said that barring a couple of tables we could sit anywhere. I thought this was a bit strange as she didn’t even ask for our name. Once seated we were then given the food and drinks menus to look at. The menu had a good selection of starters , a choice of four roasts as well as a selection of French main dishes. There were only two desserts plus the addition of a cheese course. We also at this stage had the chance to look around and considering this used to be a pie & mash shop the decoration was ok even though still quite basic. We ordered a large glass of the house red & white wine before making our food choices.
For our starters we chose the Moules Mariniere with white wine , cream , herbs & garlic which were very nice. I chose the Steak Tartare with egg yolk & granary crispbread. This I thought was a bit bland and seemed to be lacking in seasoning.
Unfortunately what was to follow wasn’t good as the wait for our mains felt like an eternity. But what we did notice that it wasn’t just us as the one table that were there before us had only been served a starter for one of the guests. As more people came in we started to notice that for a period no food was coming out of the kitchen. We now realised that we had been seated for almost an hour and a half when the waiter was sent to our table to say that our mains wouldn’t be long. Then finally our mains appeared which were the Welsh Lamb Rump with pea veloute , ravioli of sweetbread , sauté kidney & mint jus and the Roast Rib of Beef with horseradish sauce , watercress , sauce bordelaise & Yorkshire pudding. The disappointing thing was that after all this time the beef was cold but having had to wait so long I decided to eat it. When Helen came over to clear our plates she asked if everything was ok and it was then I told her about the meat and said if we hadn’t have had to wait so long I would have sent it back. She apologised and reported back to the chef/owner Scott before coming back with some sort of explanation and an apology.
Welsh Lamp Rump
Roasted Rib of Beef
We decided not to order dessert and just asked for the bill. While I was getting our coats Scott came out and gave me his sincerest apologises for what had happened. I did feel chatting to him that we both understood that these things although you don’t want it to can happen. We shook hands and he hoped that we would return to have a better experience. Based on yesterday’s lunch I’m not sure we will which would be a shame as I do like to support local restaurants but who knows. I think what would be a good idea is to get in a restaurant manager who could then liaise better with the kitchen something that I think was quite noticeably not appearing to be happening.
I hope this was a one off and wish them all the best for the future.