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“Excellent service!”
Review of House of Darwin

House of Darwin
Ranked #110 of 677 Restaurants in Derby
Price range: USD 9 - USD 47
Cuisines: British
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Reviewed 6 April 2018 via mobile

Enjoyed a lovely meal on Monday, the food was beautiful but the service absolutely made the meal! When we arrived we approached the bar to be greeted by a lovely chap (Jordon D) who made us feel welcome from the off, and once seated we were served by a lovely young girl called Chelsea. She was very helpful, recommending some lovely dishes which we truly enjoyed! We cannot wait to return!

Date of visit: April 2018
Thank Chelsea B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GeorgieGlass, Public Relations Manager at House of Darwin, responded to this reviewResponded 20 July 2018

Thank you for a brilliant review, glad you enjoyed yourself! Please do visit us again soon.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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71 - 75 of 140 reviews

Reviewed 4 April 2018 via mobile

We very rarely tip in a resteraunt but tonight we felt it was well deserved! Jordon our waiter was fabulous, he is a credit to the place! He went out of his way to make our evening most enjoyable. The food was excellent, what a fantastic menu! Keep up the good work 'House of Darwin' we'll most certainly be back!

Date of visit: April 2018
Thank minfy124
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GeorgieGlass, Public Relations Manager at House of Darwin, responded to this reviewResponded 20 July 2018

Thank you for a brilliant review, glad you enjoyed yourself! Please do visit us again soon.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 April 2018

Just had a lovely meal at the Darwin, very nice and Jordan d was very attentive. Well done Jordan d. Food was lovely. I can certainly recommend the lamb shank and sweet potato mash

Date of visit: April 2018
Thank Karen S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GeorgieGlass, Public Relations Manager at House of Darwin, responded to this reviewResponded 20 July 2018

Thank you for a brilliant review, glad you enjoyed yourself! Please do visit us again soon.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 April 2018 via mobile

I went here for lunch today with my parents before I headed home after the Easter break. I hadn't been since the refurb and the place looks great! We were served by Jordan (D) and he was great, very friendly and attentive. We all had the fish and chips from the express menu and the food was lovely. Was my first time trying Darwin's and would definitely come back. Highly recommended.

Date of visit: April 2018
Thank Rachael K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GeorgieGlass, Public Relations Manager at House of Darwin, responded to this reviewResponded 20 July 2018

Thank you for a brilliant review, glad you enjoyed yourself! Please do visit us again soon.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 April 2018

There's a review from simo780 that echoes my experience at House of Darwin completely.

I'd heard good things about the Sunday lunches here and it sounded like a good place to take my parents for Easter Sunday. I made the booking online on Good Friday and had make an adjustment to change the time we were dining. On reflection, it was telling that there was no problem getting a table and no problem changing the time to eat an hour earlier. That should have told me that this restaurant wasn't exactly doing a "roaring trade" for the Bank Holiday weekend ...

The first disappointment was the "homemade lemonade". Don't. That's all I can say. I should have been more direct with the barman. It was nice but not special and it definitely didn't taste homemade. All it appears to consist of is lemon juice, sugar syrup, lemonade from the tap and lots and lots of ice. Apparently, it can't be made without ice. Nonsense. It had none of the sharpness or acidity of freshly squeezed lemon. I was hoping for something like M&S's fresh lemonade - cloudy and bittersweet - but I didn't get it. The non-alcoholic drinks at the bar were seriously over-priced considering they don't taste good. Quite shocking, actually. It did not augur well for what was to come ...

The menu is changed seasonally. It looks impressive but on closer inspection of the detail, it's rather dull and uninspiring. (No soup as a starter because it's the weekend? What's that about?!) I couldn't see anything worth eating on the a la carte side. So I ordered Sunday roast. It was cold first time. That was a bad start.

I didn't mind that the veg was a bit under cooked but the roast potatoes and parsnips were not really roasted and I'd have preferred my gravy on the side. However, the meat (beef for me) was lovely. My sister and I sent our meals back because the veg was too cold to be enjoyed and when our plates came back, there wasn't any great improvement. I couldn't be bothered to send my plate back a second time. Strangely, though, the chef sent through an additional bowl of veg which was actually hot - as a kind of apology. Hmmmm ... not sure that was the most appropriate gesture (additional veg that you don't necessarily want, sent when you're half way through your meal) but we appreciated that the kitchen had acknowledged the problem.

My mother had the fish and chips. Her sage observation was that it didn't seem "fresh" to her. She thought it had been reheated. I trust her judgment: I wasn't going to disagree. She also turned up her nose at the mushy peas because they looked grey and unappetising. Only my dad seemed quite content with his meal. He'd chosen the salmon. It was presented well. Having said that, my dad's silence isn't any kind of recommendation because he's the sort of person who doesn't really care about eating. If he could take a pill containing all his nutrition for a year, he'd do it.

You can tell that the staff are making a lot of effort and there's been a big investment in what was formerly known as "The Golden Pheasant" - but it's really not a very good place to eat at all.

And the dessert menu consists entirely of cheesecake. Having tried it, it's not even good cheesecake. It claims to be baked but doesn't taste anywhere near as good as a traditional, New York, baked cheesecake. Any decent home cook could do better. You would certainly want better from professionals.

All in all, it's a while since I've been so disappointed after a meal! This restaurant is expensive, poor value for money and very ordinary quality - a typical example of promising much and totally failing to deliver. Style over substance.

And then as a little gift, they offered vouchers for free dessert on your next visit. Well, I for one won't be using those vouchers - and I won't be giving them away, either. With my hand on my heart, I couldn't recommend this restaurant to anyone - not with a clear conscience.

Date of visit: April 2018
    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank JAYCEE9DERBY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Iain M, General Manager at House of Darwin, responded to this reviewResponded 3 April 2018

Dear JAYCEE9DERBY,

Thank you for taking the time to give us your honest and candid feedback from your visit on Sunday. Firstly I'd like to apologise for the shortfall in service and food quality you received. Please rest assured this is not indicative of our usual standard and we take great pride in what we do.

I have noted all of your comments and discussed these with our relevant teams and can assure you there will be no repeats of this in the future. I would also like to assure you that all of our food is freshly prepared to order, the fish & chips is one of our signature dishes.

I would like to discuss your issues in more detail, please feel free to contact me on the email below. It would be great to introduce myself personally.

Yours Sincerely

Iain
General Manager
iain@houseofdarwin.co.uk

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