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“Good food for all the family” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Laughing Monk Restaurant

The Laughing Monk Restaurant
Totnes Road, Strete, Dartmouth TQ6 0RN, England
01803 770639
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Ranked #1 of 1 Restaurants in Strete
Cuisines: British
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Romance, Large groups, Doing business, Local cuisine, Special occasions, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Description: Family owned restaurant, relaxed atmosphere, serving the best local produce available. We are not a fine dinning restaurant but serving great food is our passion
London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“Good food for all the family”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 24, 2014

The best food we had in our holiday. Excellent medley of fish and monkfish tails. Not cheap but value for money

Visited July 2014
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265 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    211
    39
    10
    3
    2
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Halifax, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
“Another lovely meal”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 24, 2014

This was our second visit and we weren't disappointed. Great homemade bread and delicious food. Couldn't manage puds and left really full. Very attentive service, generous and flavoursome portions. We hope to return.

  • Visited July 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UK
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Worth a visit”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2014

Staying a short taxi ride away we decided to try this restaurant based on previous reviews.

Warm welcome and we both liked the setting with well spaced tables.

Husband's starter of squid was fine with light batter and tender squid, mine was a tasty crab and prawn cocktail with a nicely flavoured dressing...would have been preferable to have a more even balance between white / brown meat but that is my personal taste.

The complimentary bread was moreish.

Husband was pleased with main of roast pork and commentated that 'roasters' could have been a little more crisp but dish was tasty and super crackling! I had a selection of grilled fish which was perfectly cooked with hand cut home-made chips.

For us, portion size would be to cut back on the starters and increase the mains.

We shared a cheese board and a request for some extra crackers was dealt with quickly with no issues....good idea to have a choice of number of cheeses and priced accordingly.

Had a brief chat with the owner, extremely friendly and pleasant lady who also assisted with the service.....worth a visit if you're in the area.

  • Visited July 2014
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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East Midlands
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
46 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 49 cities Reviews in 49 cities
152 helpful votes 152 helpful votes
“10/10 for food, service, location, decor and ambience!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2014

We were in the area and had read about the "Laughing Monk" so we decided to book in for dinner. The building has a fascinating history, in so far as it was the village School house until the mid 60's after which it was used as a stable for the local farmers horse. It was then a restaurant of sorts called the stable door, then the Laughing monk. (There is vagueness as to the significance of the name?) The current owners (who are lovely by the way) bought the run down restaurant about 7 years ago and sympathetically restored it. The Restaurant is well laid out and some of the original seating and other items have been restored and are in use, adding to the real interest and quaintness of the place. The food was very very good as was the service. The parking is in a church yard 50 yards up the road on the opposite side to the restaurant. There are a number of old photographs dotted around of children in the school house pre 1960's there is also a canvas on the wall which allows local village residents who actually attended the School to sign the canvas. It all makes for a very pleasant, historic, gastronomic experience.

The menu is fab and as you would expect, dominated by fish dishes, but there are meat alternatives and a lot of cleverly thought through dishes with ingredients that really compliment each other well. The desserts are superb, if not a tad sizeable, but they are far too good to pass up!

The prices are in my opinion in keeping with the quality of food and service provided, but if it's a £5.95 cheap n cheerful cod & chips you are after, then keep driving to Blackpool sands about a mile down the road.

Do give this quirky, high class restaurant a try, but be sure to book, every table was full on a Wednesday evening albeit in July.

Great business! Best of luck for the future Ben & Jackie "The owners" AKA Chef and front of house. We look forward to returning in the future!

  • Visited July 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Bristol, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
105 reviews 105 reviews
85 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
76 helpful votes 76 helpful votes
“Once is quite enough.......”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2014

We visited this restaurant twice over a recent long weekend to Dartmouth (staying in the village of Strete) and found the meals to be more than a fair standard.

The restaurant itself can be found in the old school house, which has been converted and decorated/fitted out simply but tastefully.

On our first meal we opted for the seafood tapas to share as a starter and this was an excellent choice. The potted crab was delicious, the battered squid perfectly cooked and very tender. The sardines and lobster bisque a delight. This is an excellent choice of starter to share although they did tend to go slightly overboard on the portion size of the squid (a little less would have been advisable as the batter tends to fill you up rather quickly).

The main courses were taken as the beef with a peppercorn sauce and from the specials board, the duck. Unfortunately, although the beef was cooked to perfection we had to concur that the peppercorn sauce was the worst we had ever tasted! Thankfully, the sauce was served on the side in its own receptacle which turned out to be a blessing as this one small jug of insipid sauce could have ruined the whole steak. One solitary peppercorn was floating in this thin and tasteless sauce, the flavour of which I can only liken to that of a beef stock cube.

However, the duck was very good and cooked perfectly. Unfortunately, however, my side salad, described on the menu as a tomato, onion and basil salad turned out to be a dish full of green leaf, half a tomato and a small amount of onion. I was expecting, from the name “tomato, onion and basil salad” a layered salad of good beef tomatoes, sliced red onion and fresh basil leaves so was left sadly disappointed on what was delivered to the table and which failed miserably in living up to its description on the menu (when I mentioned that this was not a true tomato salad they did add more tomato and onion for me without quibble, however there was still not a basil leaf in sight).

The desserts were good and the lemon parfait had a clean, fresh taste although slightly a little too firm for my liking and probably could have done with a longer defrost/rise to room temperature. The sticky toffee pudding got the thumbs up from the old man but he found it rather filling and a little heavy after the previous 2 courses.

The second evening we decided to steer clear of starters/desserts and opted for main courses only both consisting of fish (monkfish and turbot) and although they did not blow us away both dishes were cooked very well and the fish flavoursome and on the whole, very good choices.

The wine list is relatively small but has a fair and mixed selection all of which are reasonably priced but I was slightly disappointed that they did not offer any half bottles. They also advise cocktails available but supply no cocktail menu to choose from or peruse, though we were told if we had wanted anything specific they could make it up, we stuck to the Bellinis, you cannot go far wrong with a bit of fizz. The dessert wine selection was also good and very reasonably priced.


On the whole the Laughing Monk is a nice place to eat but as there is nothing else in the vicinity and public transport a nightmare, you are limited to the one venue in Strete and without any current competition they appeared to run a fairly steady trade being relatively full on the Saturday evening though the Friday was a lot quieter.

Well worth a visit if you are in the area but I think our 2 visits turned out to be one too many.

  • Visited June 2014
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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