4 reviews of Restaurant 23 in English
We decided to visit Leamington Spa today and when parking we noticed that 23 had moved to new, larger and what looked like very nice premises.
We had eaten several times before at the restaurant when they were located at their original premises and were very impressed even though service had always been very slow.
So I booked a table for both my wife and my self. We arrived and were sat down in a very impressively looking dining room. My wife decided to have the Set Lunch Menu and chose the Chicken Liver Parfait and the Cod while I chose from the A La Carte menu the Seared hand dived scallop and the Wild Sea Bass.
The food itself was quite nice, nothing to shout about but unfortunately my Scallop was over cooked and felt like a piece of rubber instead of a melt in the mouth delicacy, shame because it was very fresh but totally destroyed.
The service though was appalling. Considering that the scallop was served in a bowl with a bisque, I had to ask the waitress for a spoon so I could eat or even taste it. At the end my wife chose a desert only to be told 3 or 4 minutes latter that the menu she was given was an old one and the current desert was a different one which she decided to have. To finish the meal I asked for a coffee to be served at the same time as my wife’s desert and waited and waited. Finally, I managed to get hold of one of the waiters who got me a coffee after my wife had finished her desert.
What a pity. It could have been a great experience but it was the worse one we had at this restaurant since we started to use it over the past 3 years.
My main impression was that the staff have been very poorly trained and are doing a disservice to the whole setup. Having a wonderful meal is not just about the food, the service, the ambiance and the food all come as a package and should complement each other.
Will I go back? The jury is still out…..
So this is the NEW restaurant 23 in Leamington. Now in larger premises with a swanky cocktail bar and has moved up market. I was not disappointed by the ambience or the food. Interestingly they were not yet doing the tasting menu as the still need more staff in the kitchen. This was the right decision! it’s too easy to take the money and allow the customer to wait and wait – but they were honest enough to admit that they were not ready yet (this being their second week of opening).
Food and service were excellent and cannot be faulted. I couldn’t get along with the wines. The white Maconnais was fine, but I could not fathom the reds. Initially i ordered the Briuolly, but hated it, it wasn’t corked, but just not to my taste. The good news is they only charged me their cost when the bill arrived. I then had a cote du rhone which was fine, if uninspiring.
However, this is a definite MUST visit – if not cheap.
As a follow up, I visited again over easter – and the wines are still an issue. Either too esoteric or too expensive. The service was just not special enough. 15-20 mins wait between courses is not good enough, waiters who cannot remember what they are delivering, and for the second time are happy for you to disappear without recognition, or even the coats you came with. Staff must try harder and learn to SMILE!
Fantastic - a very high quality,family run restaurant with top quality food prepared and cooked in front of our eyes by the owner, and served to the very highest standards by his wife - both of whom served time in Claridges.
Top class London restaurant standard in quiet old Leamington - 3 courses for two people, including wine, for just under a 100 quid.
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