Hello my lovelies,
Yesterday afternoon, we visited the Walled Garden restaurant at Knights Garden Centre Nags Hall for lunch. We’d been there before and had a gorgeous meal so decided to return since were were in the vicinity. I can’t say that our visit was as successful this time as our first visit!
The place was tastefully kitted out for Halloween and the staff were dressed as various gouls to match.
The layout of the Walled Garden and the Potting Shed (it’s coffee shop) is quite strange. We waited to be seated and were then asked where we wanted to sit. Missy asked if she could sit at a table by the fish tank but was told that these tables were part of the seating for the Potting Shed coffee shop and as such we couldn’t be served a hot meal there. We found this strange since we had walked through the Potting Shed into the Walled Garden and the tables and chairs were different in both places. The table we wanted had the same furniture as the Walled Garden and the section wasn’t marked off. But ho hum!
Our waitress seated us at a table near the window with some menues and disappeared for 15 minutes and only came to take our order when we flagged her down. She admitted she’d forgotten about us.
The menu was once again strange. We were given a small menu which appeared to be the lunch menu which had a 2 or 3 course option where you could choose from 3 starters, some main courses and a series of puddings. We had to ask for a children’s menu which was from a different menu which appeared to be their main menu. Mr R and Granny R decided to have a 3 course option. Missy upon looking at the children’s menu asked if she could look at the lunch menu and decided she wanted a scotch egg but didn’t like the coleslaw and endive salad. I said I’d ask for a substitute of chips. I opted for the burger on a dough bread roll with coleslaw and sweet potato chips. I would have had a starter to share with Missy but the lunch menu had no other starter options besides those within the 2/3 course option. To be honest, none of these appealed to me in the slightest as they either had blue cheese, smoked salmon or Gnocchi with pesto (I think!). It was strange to have a 2 or 3 course menu for lunch anyway! For drinks, Mr R and Granny R asked for tea while I asked for a milkshake and Missy asked for cloudy lemonade. Our waitress took our order and we all forgot to ask for Missy’s meal to be brought when Mr R and Granny R had their starter. Most restaurants bring a child’s main meal with the adult’s starters as a default anyway but we did call the waitress back to ask. She said that she’d already put the order through and the kids meal couldn’t be brought with the starters as she hadn’t put it into the computer that way. I’m not quite sure why a pre-made scotch eggs and some chips couldn’t be quickly rustled up to be served with the starters.
Our drinks arrived and the milk for the tea was served in an adorable mini milk can. My milkshake arrived and I was very confused. It wasn’t thick like you’d expect a normal milkshake to be, instead it was the consistency of Nesquick and had a large handful of ice floating around in it. For £3 I found this very expensive for Nesquick with ice.
We had a long wait for the starters despite the restaurant being only a quarter full. In this time, we couldn’t help but notice the loud music which seemed to have a theme that clearly did not suit the rather elegant surroundings. Songs ranged from Meatloaf’s Bat out of Hell to Alice Cooper’s Frankenstein. I really enjoy a bit of hard rock but the music was far too loud to enjoy lunch over. Alice cooper gave way to Wagner’s Flight of the Valkyries, the Adam’s family and then oddly enough, the sound track to Psycho.
The starters arrived and they were truly a work of art. By this point, Missy and I had finished our drinks (I’d fished the ice blocks out of my Nesquick) and the waitress hurried off before I could ask for another round of drinks. Mr R and Granny R enjoyed their starters and we waited another 10 minutes before our mains were brought out.
The mains were gorgeous! Mr R and Granny R had the lamb rump with potatoes dauphinois which were perfectly cooked. Missy’s scotch egg was huge and the egg inside was clearly a free range egg which she thoroughly enjoyed. My meal was received at this point with much enthusiasm since we’d waited so long for it. The sour dough bun was really hard and was quickly discarded but the patty was homemade and delicious, the salad fresh, the sweet potato fries were the best I’d ever tasted and then coleslaw was homemade and very tasty.
While we were eating trying to talk over more Meatloaf a waitress started sweeping noisily around us. We found this highly surprising since it’s not usual to sweep dust in the air while diners are eating. Granny R was not impressed.
We once again waited quite a while for our plates to be cleared and the menus to be brought back for desserts to be chosen. While we waited Missy began to grow bored. Knowing it was difficult to keep her occupied for the long wait that seemed to the norm at The Walled Garden I took her to look at the cakes at The Potting shed. There they had a fantastic array of cakes half of which were Halloween themed and looked fantastically gruesome. Knowing we’d be having desserts I scoped out the selection for anything dairy free and found one of the pre-packaged gluten free brownies was dairy free and Missy loves a brownie!
Granny R didn’t fancy anything on the set menu and asked instead for the lemon meringue pie that we’d seen a nearby table enjoying. I copied her and Mr R asked for the baked cheesecake with stewed rhubarb. I must point out at this stage that the table across from us which was part of the Potting Shed seating, was occupied by a woman who was eating a burger. Can you tell I’m still confused by the seating situation and lack of demarcation?
Our desserts arrived and they were utterly delicious! The lemon meringue pie was the best I’ve ever had.
We discussed our experience at The Walled Garden while we waited for the bill to arrive and all agreed that we could not fault the food but the service, confusion about the seating arrangements and loud music left much to be desired.
We give the food an 8/10
The service 5/10
The general experience 5/10
It’s a shame because our first experience at The Walled Garden was very positive. The food is so tasty that we’d probably go back however, their service needs a shake up!