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“Absolutely no taste”

Crowded House Bar & Cafe
Ranked #41 of 186 Restaurants in New Plymouth
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$7 - US$26
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, After-hours, Reservations
Description: Crowded House, it's a local sports bar like no other in the heart of the New Plymouth CBD. Open 7 days from 10am until late the eatery menu has a wide selection of dishes to choose from brunch, lunch & dinner. The bar has an extensive range including Heineken. We LOVE sport and have plenty of screens for you to watch it all on. FREE WIFI for all of our customers too. Crowded House is just 5 minutes walk to our World famous Pukekura Park or down to the Coastal Walkway.
Reviewed 2 April 2017

I don't really know where to start with this review. We were planning on eating at the Mongolian restaurant, but were quite late, and as this place looked quite lively and was a bit crowded we (I, must take the blame for that one) decided to go here instead.

Unfortunately that was a mistake that would leave us hungry. First of all it took about 10-15 minutes before the waitress came to see us. Luckily enough they placed decent music, so the wait wasn't that bad, and the waitress was also very nice when she first arrived. She took our orders (Beef Nachos and Smoked Chicken & Bacon Fettucine) and was quickly back with our beverages. The food took some time, but nothing out of the ordinary so no biggie so far.

However when the food first came, I wish it hadn't. Beef Nachos are not a culinary high, so I don't expect much, but at the same time it should be close to impossible to mess up such a dish. They managed tough. I tasted absolutely nothing. If someone had blindfolded me, I wouldn't have any idea of what I was eating. I tried to single out the tomato from the so called salsa, just to see if that at least had a taste, but that was only if I put my good will to it. The item with the most taste was the sour cream, which should tell you everything. I even had to use a lot of salt on the nachos, to be able to eat some of it. And the cheese? They've managed to put the cheese in the bottom, which made it look like it had been laying out in the sun for a few hours (and of course it didn't taste anything)

So what about the Chicken Fettucine? Well, I've always mocked my wife for not caring about taste (or the lack of it), and when even she reacts there is something wrong. The parmesan cheese was just put in one (sweaty) pile, which made it look anything else den delicious. The bacon had hardly touched any heat, and was basically raw and didn't taste anything like bacon should. The sauce itself at least had some taste, but it was so weak that it was hardly possible to identify.

As Norwegians we hardly complain about the food, we rather nod politely and not say anything, but this time we actually planned to as it was so extreme and with both meals. However after getting served we never saw out waitress again. As with many places that are "open till Late", they are more busy cleaning out the premises than actually taking care of the customers. This was also the case here and I do not get up to look for a server when in a restaurant. Attentive servers are the least one should be able to expect. After waiting 15 minutes without seeing her, the food was cold and beyond the possibility of saving anyway, so we left our almost full dishes at the table and left to pay.

We mentioned it when paying, but nothing was done. Here I mean the restaurant should have credited everything that was related to the food, but she just said she would contact the kitchen afterwards. I don't believe in arguing over a bill with any restaurant, as when being be confronted with an unhappy customer they should have procedures in place for handling it, and maybe this is the procedure?

Taste is a very subjective thing and normally when eating out somewhere there is a risk of getting a dish that is not to your liking, even though there is absolutely nothing wrong with the food. However when there is absolutely no taste even I draw the line.. I see that the place have had good reviews earlier, so let's hope that this was just an extremely bad day at the kitchen. As a pub though, I'm sure the place is nice.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Thomas1406
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
EmmaPuletaha, Manager at Crowded House Bar & Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 4 April 2017

Hi Thomas,
Many thanks for your review, we are always grateful to hear feedback good (and bad).
We apologise that you and your wife did not enjoy the food when you visited, we have discussed this at length with our Kitchen staff and reviewed our presentation and seasoning of the dishes in question. You are correct, sometimes kitchens have very bad days and perhaps this was the case.
We will also address our Front of House staff and remind them of our complaints procedure that we have in place. You certainly should of had the issue addressed more thoroughly and the chef wishes your complaint had been passed on to him so he could have rectified it.
We are a great pub with good food and lovely staff, its a pity that your visit wasn't to the usual high standard that we pride ourselves on.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a ReviewReviews (204)
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48 - 52 of 204 reviews

Reviewed 24 March 2017 via mobile

The night started well with a very bubbly staff member taking my order and delivering my drink. Unfortunately the Seafood Chowder was bland and lacked seasoning. The Southern Style Chicken Burger was good though, the wait staff were slow to take away previous plates, even though the restaurant wasn't busy. Might try this place again.

Thank mattinthehat25
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 March 2017 via mobile

Fantastic food, brilliant service, need I say more. It's so cool when you return to a place that you've not visited in a while and it's even better then you remember. Such a friendly atmosphere, fun and comfortable, massive Tv's and awesome decor well thought out. Fabulous menus something for everyone. Outside seating plenty of room. Out orders were filled quickly with lots of smiles and laughter. The bacon was just beautiful and it was crispy not burnt just the way I asked for it. LOVE THIS PLACE, highly recommended and I most certainly will be back.

Thank Marlaina C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 March 2017 via mobile

Great value for money. Had the fish sliders and they were delicious! The complimentary donut deal also went down a treat!

Thank Michelle L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 March 2017

Excellent service even though they were busy with Americarna crowds. Excellent food and great atmoshpere.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank kimz120
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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