The Forresters, Hampton Wick

The Forresters in Hampton Wick is a pub with a wonderful restaurant. I’ve eaten here quite a few times in the last couple of years, usually for Sunday lunch.  The pub is a short walk from Kingston, just over the bridge and on the same side of the river as Bushy Park and Hampton Court Palace.  This place gets booked up, particularly on a Sunday,  when it can be a scrabble for the prime dining times.  The food is billed as “modern British cuisine” and they have a good wine list and a good range of craft beers and real ales as well.

We ate here on the dreaded Valentines day, mainly because it had live music and we know the food is good. We weren’t disappointed by the food but the same could not be said of the service.

The starter was a lovely crab salad, it was refreshing and delicious.  My only complaint was that it was very light on the crab and I personally could have done with more.  We both had the same starter and main course (very predictable!)

My main course was is the title image to this post, Onglet steak with chips.  This was really tasty and I polished it off without much fuss.  I have no idea however why they put a charred half lemon or a huge mound of rocket as dressing to this – filling up space maybe?  Both were completely unnecessary and crowded the board.

Then the final course was a dark, bitter  chocolate torte with white chocolate ice cream.  Incredible rich and very delicious. Needless to say not much was left of that!  And to accompany a lovely glass of Rioja for my companion and a Valpolicella for moi (as it was a special occasion)

Now here is where it all falls apart for The Forresters, once again the service was slow, unobservant and forgetful.  We eat Sunday lunch here often and it’s just the same, I guess they rely on the quality of the food as people keep coming back and don’t worry about the service, but it is just such a shame!  They could be hands down the best place within miles.  Little things like leaving you ages after being seated to even get drinks.  When I asked for mustard for my steak I didn’t get it. We had to attract the waiter attention when we wanted anything.  I did say something to the guy who was taking our order, he apologised and gave us the dessert course free, which was a nice but I’m just sorry he had to do that at all. If only they just paid a little more attention.  Maybe it’s training, maybe it’s just the way it’s always been but it is the thing which stays in your mind long after the lovely food memory has faded and has at times made me book other places.  Bad service is pretty much unforgivable.

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