5 reviews of The Moorhen in English
This location was booked for our Company Christmas do (12.12.11).
Not a great impression from the start as I waited 20 minutes to be served at the bar, there was only 2 people in front of me and no crowds blocking access, in fact the pub was very quiet. One person serving drinks and taking food orders, not acceptable.
The starter was a reasonable size but the soup was overly flavoured with basil and chunks of presumably basil and in fact tasted very similar to a warmed up bolognaise sauce.
The main was delicious, a good size portion of traditional christmas dinner, although more roasties would have been nice, but that’s just personal preference.
My dessert was nowhere to be seen and I had to track down a waitress to ask where mine was, as everyone else had virtually finished theirs! I do feel that a vanilla cheesecake should be just that, not topped with blueberries making therefore a blueberry cheesecake…? It’s a good job I’m not allergic to them!
As for the portion of christmas pudding that my colleagues had, well; it was an insult! It was like a finger of twix cut in half and drowned in anaemic looking custard, it was also only partially edible as most of it was solid and too hard to eat, I’m certainly glad I didn’t order it, as I would have thrown it back at the waitress, not asked for a replacement! The choc fudge cake was a large portion, but very dry apparently, it wasn’t eaten.
Overall; a fair experience, mainly because of the company I was with, but as for the dining experience, a reasonable price but not keen to repeat my visit in a hurry.
I have used The Moorhen and the childrens play area for many years-even having my childrens party there on ocassions. I decided to do exactly the same this year for my daughters 8th birthday. On arrival we were shown to our room-which had discarded food and rubbish all over the floor?! We had arranged for the children to have face painting-and when she was there she was very good-unfortunately this wasn't very often and my sister in law ended up doing most of the kids for us. we had to wait for ages at the bar to get juice refills as there was only 1 person serving-at 3 o'clock on a Saturday afternoon? Really-is this acceptable at £7.99 per head? I think not Greene King. As a parent I feel awful for my daughter-and as a Publican myself-I feel ashamed that what used to be a quality establishment is being run so appallingly!
The reason that this review has even been star rated is because it would not allow me to publish it with a blank rating-had there have been - stars I'd have given you a 5. I feel that you thoroughly deserve it!
I have eaten here on a couple of occasion and have always found the food to be really nice! There is a large choice on the menu and have always found the food the food to be really fresh. This is an ideal restaurant for children as they have a huge childrens play centre downstairs. This can get very busy though and can seem chaotic at times! Overall i would recommend this place to eat. Is close to the river so parents need to keep an eye on little ones!!
I’ll write a proper review then, shall I?!
The Moorhen is a large country pub tucked out of the way just off of the A414 as you approach Harlow. It is signposted, but only just, so unless you know it is there it’s easy to miss. In light of that, the fact that this place is always pretty busy (especially on Sundays) is perplexing.
It’s in the mold of a chain pub, although I don’t think it is. The only saving grace is how child-friendly it is. Downstairs they have a large ‘play-barn’ type area, with padded climbers and ball pits etc., along with some arcade machines for the older kids and a few TVs for the adults. There is also a small bar down there but only serving soft drinks, beer is upstairs (from memory).
Upstairs there is a main bar, and then a very large restaurant, split over two levels. It’s a nice enough environment - a bit on the grubby side in places but on the whole it’s OK. The food though, leaves a LOT to be desired. It is frequently cold or luke-warm, and is patently reheated. Potatoes are hard, veg isn’t cooked properly, and it all seems a bit low-quality. On the three separate occasions we have been (not our choice!) the food has been pretty diabolical.
Drinks-wise, there are the normal range of beers and soft drinks, nothing unusual there.
On nice days you can also go outside where there is a lot of seating and outdoor climbing frames for the kids. The view is quiet nice, situated right on top of the River Stort, but it hardly serves to save this pub from mediocre-ville.
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