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“Customer Service like no other.” 1 of 5 stars
Review of The Olde Red Lion

The Olde Red Lion
High Street | Kislingbury, Northampton, England
01604 830 219
Website
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Ranked #78 of 404 Restaurants in Northampton
Cuisines: Pub
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Reservations, Delivery, Late Night
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Reservations, Delivery, Late Night
Northampton, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“Customer Service like no other.”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2012

I have never been so disgusted by customer service than that which we received from here and will never step foot back inside The Olde Red Lion under its current management.
If you are a groupon customer then you can expect service even worse than the already substandard service and don't go expecting a nice pleasant relaxing atmosphere.
We went here on a groupon around 6 months ago and I was disappointed to have found that one of the only two vegetarian options off the online menu was not on the menu we were given. When I asked the manageress, who was our waitress, if there were any other veg options available she was downright rude and flat refused to do anything stating that the chef was too busy and as we were a 'Groupon' I had to choose from the menu. When I asked about the 'Goats cheese tart' which I had seen online she said no that's not on today and had I have phoned up before hand they would have been able to have done something. As always not wanting to be the 'fussy vegetarian' I gritted my teeth and had ham, egg & chips without the ham.
When the food finally came it was really good (Worth the money at the discounted price anyway) and despite the incredibly rude & obnoxious manageress, who ushered us out quickly after we had finished our meal and made us feel very unwelcome, we tried our hardest to have a good night and left with our tummies full but very disappointed with the service.

Last month I noticed the same groupon offer appear and due to the pub being a midway point between our friend and us I thought we'd give it another go and hope that the service had improved.

I decided this time to do as she had advised and phoned ahead before hand. The landlord and chef who I spoke to were really helpful and friendly and said they would gladly cook something else up and offered me a few options all of which I liked the sounds of. I started to really look forward to the night out with our friends and hopefully good food.
When we arrived our orders were taken (by the same manageress) and when my turn came to order I informed her that I was vegetarian and asked was there any other... but before I could even finish my sentence she cut me off and said 'NO, just what is on the menu!' I then tried my hardest to explain that I had phoned and spoken with the chef who was happy to do something but she would not listen and just spoke over me. I informed her that it was her who had asked me to phone in advance and that I had done as she had suggested but she was not having any of it and even went on to suggest I was lying and she had not said such a thing but when my friend pointed out that it was the same four people and they all said she had, she simply said 'I'm not arguing with you, just choose something from the menu, you're a groupon and the chefs to busy' I asked 'if I was not on a groupon would that make a difference?' but once again she just said 'I'm not arguing with you'. She then proceeded to say that the chef was new and I had spoken to the old one and that a new one started Thursday but when my wife informed her that it was after that when I had called, again she said 'I'm not arguing with you' and then she walked off saying 'You're ruining the night for everyone else here and you're now at the back of the queue!'.
We were all stunned. Never have any of us EVER experienced such bad customer service. The Fact that she is in charge meant we couldn't even call over the manager to show our disgust.
The Landlord came over shortly after, not to apologise though, but to aggressively tell us that if we were going to shout at his staff then he'd like us to leave. We informed him that we had not in fact been shouting and I asked if he'd mind stopping pointing and waving his finger at me and I would gladly explain what had happened. When he realised that it was him that I had spoken with on the phone his tone changed slightly and he eventually said he would go and speak to the chef. Whilst we waited for a response another waitress came and apologised to the table next to us for the long wait for their food. We started thinking that even if we did make an order it was going to take a while. He then came out and said 'No, the chef won't do anything'. To this we opted to take him up on his offer of leaving and after he followed us out the pub and gave us the option of paying for our round of drinks or not, we opted for the later and went and ate at the Wharf.
I have had to wait for a couple of day to calm down to post this but all of us are still in disbelief at how we were treated and how horrid the manageress was.
With regards to the response given to a previous review i read I can happily back up all information given here and can assure everyone reading this that this is a genuine review and will gladly give more information if required.

  • Visited November 2012
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chrissienorthants, General Manager at The Olde Red Lion, responded to this review, November 16, 2012
We do in fact on our menu make an offer to our standard a la carte diners that if the vegetarian option of one dish is not suitable, please ask and we MAY be able to offer an alternative. However it also states, that during busy times, this option may not be available and is at chefs descretion. This gentleman as stated was on a Groupon Voucher, when he spoke to the Landlord on the Thursday about Vegetarian Options, he 1) did not state he was dining last Saturday and 2) did not state he was a Groupon Diner, the Menu on offer to Groupon diners was both approved and financially costed out by Groupon and was the Menu for Groupon Diners, which was available as part of the Groupon Purchase, if the menu was not to the gentlemans liking then perhaps he should not have purchased it. We cannot offer bespoke dining for £3.00, nor would you receive this courtessy from any other venue for the cost of a £3.00 meal. On the evening in question there were 2 vegetarian options on the menu and 4 fish dishes......the gentleman was rude and agressive, raising his voice to her, whilst the landlady tried to explain to him that bespoke dining on a Saturday evening at 8pm with 60 other diners was on the day, not an option we could offer, but he continually demanded that was what he wanted. Prepping and cooking a one off dish for one person, would have affected the efficient service of meals to every other one of the 60 diners in the building, we had an obligation to them, we do not have a big team in our kitchen, just two people. At the time the landlady knew nothing of any conversation between the landlord and the Chef with anyone, when this came to light after the Landlord came to the table at the request of another diner in the room and our waitress, both of whom did not like the gentleman raising his voice at the landlady, the Landlord did speak to the chef, because there had obviously been a communication breakdown, however as stated at the time the customer neither stated he was dining on Saturday evening or that he was a Groupon Diner. On Saturday evening we had 60 Groupon Diners in the building, as we were trying our best to accomodate all the Groupon Voucher holders who had left it until the last 3 days of the redemption period, to get a meal in with us and accomodating as many as possible was overstretching our capacity which would normally be 40, had the gentleman not been so demanding/aggressive, raising his voice and come in at any other time, we would have certainly TRIED to accomodate him, however we had to decline his demands and he should of accepted our explanation with courtessy.. The Landlord did ask him to leave and other diners thanked us for doing so. Unfortunately it is because of diners like this, who thankfully are in a minority, that most business's only ever offer Groupon Vouchers once, and some would never consider it at all, the bad malicious reviews we are receiving are all down to an unpleasant element of Groupon Diners. In our experience however this is a shame because we have found in the most part that our Groupon diners have been very pleasant and we look forward to, as we have already experienced, their return visits.
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199 reviews from our community

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    121
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Northampton, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“Shocking! Would never return”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2012 via mobile

Having read through some of the reviews on here I found one that mentioned they do not accept children in the restaurant. Wish we were told this as we took our at the time 11 month old sleeping daughter with us whilst we had a meal and she woke up. When we asked for a high chair we were told they didn't have one. Unheard of in 2012 surely?? Anyway onto the rest of the service we received!

We ordered our lunch which was pleasant but nothing amazing. We arrived at 3.15, at the time lunch was advertised as being served until 4 and by the time we had been served our dinner, which was about 25 muns later, the lights were turned out, candles blown out, fire put out and all but the front door was locked by the delightful landlady who barely acknowledged us sitting in a completely silent restaurant (the music had been turned off as well) trying to see our food.
We were never asked if we wanted another drink after our first and I have read the landladys response to another bad review that she doesn't like to annoy customers by asking if they want another drink but there is a big different between annoying people and plain ignoring them. We totally felt uncomfortable throughout the whole meal and would never return.
I am so late in reviewing this place as I just couldn't be bothered before but after hearing another bad review from someone I know today I felt compelled to say how I felt when I visited. Looking forward to hearing your response!

    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chrissienorthants, Owner at The Olde Red Lion, responded to this review, November 12, 2012
This Review has been reported as suspicious to Trip Advisor taking into account the following facts.....we do not take 3.15 reservations EVER, anyone is welcome to view our diary....... the latest dining time is 2pm, the lights are never turned off when people are in the building, this would invalidate our insurance, anyone who has dined here would know that the fire is in the bar not the restaurant so how can anyone comment that it was put out, it cannot be seen from the restaurant and it is impossibe to put a coal/log fire out, it has to naturally burn itself out and our front door is absolutely no where near to the restaurant and therefore how can anyone say the door was locked. It is also a fact that we were advised by someone that they would get their friends to post nasty reviews on us.........
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Northampton, United Kingdom
1 review
“very good”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2012

i had sunday luch it was lovely very nice it was a nice place the staff were friendly did,nt pay full price 4 my meal but i defo would deserts were lush i will b going back again without a dout cant wait 4 my next meal yummy

  • Visited November 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chrissienorthants, General Manager at The Olde Red Lion, responded to this review, November 12, 2012
We thank the reviewer for stating they had a lovely lunch, the fact they state it was not full price , was I guess because they were Groupon Diners, so we are delighted they enjoyed themselves and would have happily paid the full price and wish to return, which is a far cry from some of the factually incorrect reviews which are appearing on this site and which we would happily offer an explanation to any concerned potential diner, should they wish to contact us, however the positive reviews we believe speak for themselves.
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Northampton, United Kingdom
1 review
“excellent”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2012

i would like to thank the staff at the red lion for a friendly service with good food as well ,and will find myself and friends dinning again ,everything we asked for was not a problem to the staff who always made us feel welcome thank you again

  • Visited November 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chrissienorthants, Owner at The Olde Red Lion, responded to this review, November 12, 2012
Good Food, Welcoming and Friendly Service and wish to return with friends, thats wonderful, thank you, but it never ceases to amase us that you experienced something positive, whilst others post as we have previously stated, factually incorrect negative statements, its amasing. Or is it that the negative reviews are as per our responses.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Northampton, United Kingdom
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“What a disappointment.”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2012

We were attracted to this pub due to it being a finalist in the Northamptonshire Food & Drink Awards 2009, and actually winning the award in 2010/2011, so were naturally expecting a certain standard. Unfortunately, our experience was one of extreme disappointment, and we certainly won't be returning. The food, whilst being okay, was nothing more than acceptable pub grub!, however it was the service (or lack of it) which left a lot to be desired. The landlady was extremely offish and unfriendly which made the whole experience rather uncomfortable. On ordering our food we were immediately told there would be a delay of 45 minutes, which was disappointing as the restaurant was practically empty. Our food arrived over an hour later. That is to say 3 meals arrived, the other meal (a hotpot) took a further 10 minutes. The food, as already stated, was okay, but nothing to get too excited about, and the portions were rather small. We then ordered desserts and had a ten minute wait. We were then served another table's desserts by mistake, so had to wait a further ten minutes (by now there were only 3 tables being occupied - including ourselves, so no excuse for the delay). We then had to endure the table being cleared around us while we ate, and as soon as the last spoonful was eaten the landlady blew out the candle on our table. Most welcoming!!!!

  • Visited November 2012
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chrissienorthants, Front Office Manager at The Olde Red Lion, responded to this review, November 12, 2012
We are sorry the reviewer considered our food offering only "acceptable pub grub" as our food is generally thought of as far better than pub grub, however "acceptable pub grub" would be OK because that is what we are, a pub.....we are not a fine dining establishment with full on waiter service, in fact in a lot of pubs, you have to order your meals and drinks at the bar and provide your credit card details....neither of which applies here. Hot Pot has only been on our Menu for 3 days, all in the last week, during which time we have been run off our feet trying to accomodate all the late Groupon Redemptions, at no time therefore has the restuarant or dining room been empty, we have served approximately 40-45 diners every night for the last 5 days, with only two staff in our kitchen, I do not know why the diner had to wait for a hot pot, but I wish if this is correct that they had mentioned it at the time, giving us an opportunity to have done something about it and for that we apologise.
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