We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Chaotic and clueless” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Ben Nevis Bar and Restaurant

Ben Nevis Bar and Restaurant
103 High Street | PH33, Fort William Ph33 6dg, Scotland
+(44)01397 702295
Website
Improve this listing
Ranked #34 of 61 Restaurants in Fort William
Cuisines: Scottish
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Newcastle, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Chaotic and clueless”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 12, 2011

We waited a while for our order to be taken. Fair enough, we thought, they're busy. While waiting, we noticed two people on the next table being served, then the dishes taken away as they were wrong. Then another two on the same table. Two of the dishes reappeared and were given to another table. It should have been a warning.

After 30-40 minutes of waiting for one cold starter, we managed to get the waitress to find out what was happening. Much checking of the system, repeating the order back to us (correctly), profuse apologies. She went to see what was happening. Ten minutes later, it arrived - smoked salmon and toast, only the toast was just bread. This should have taken a cook about 30 seconds to plate up. Two minutes if he had bothered to toast the bread.

We waited. We saw another table get the wrong food delivered and taken back. Several people who had come in after us had eaten and were leaving. We waited a bit more. Eventually, noticing our frustration, the manager came over and asked if we had ordered drinks. We explained that we had done so over an hour previously, had waited for ages, had chased up the waitress, and still nothing was happening. She looked horrified, and found out that after they had reinstated our starter order, the order for the main courses had "dropped off the system". Oh dear. When the first delay was reported, the waitress should have told the kitchen there was a problem and she needed this order quickly - it's standard practice. Instead, she didn't even manage to make sure the kitchen got the repeat order at all. First order lost, second order "dropped off the system".

From that point the manager got things moving, and she apologised again and offered free desserts. The right thing to do, but by that time we were just so fed up it was too late for us to be placated, but we were too tired and hungry to go looking for somewhere else. The food came - one wrong order out of three. This is not a complicated menu - it's basically burgers and fried fish, a couple of steaks, sauces out of jars - how hard can it be?

The waitress came and asked if we would like anything else. We said dessert. She didn't give us the menu, but wandered off and did something else. The manager came past and we asked her for a menu. While we were waiting, we saw someone in the queue lean forward and say "Excuse me" to a waitress who completely ignored him, though she passed within a foot of him. As we left, we saw another table looking around with an air of increasing desperation, hoping to be noticed.

This place could maybe do with another member of staff, but the real problem seems to be the utter lack of co-ordination, and the lack of care and attention of some of the staff. Quite a lot of the scurrying about was to do with correcting mistakes, and it's not easy to tell if they would look understaffed without this factor. The heart of the problem seems to be correctly communicating to the kitchen what the customers want, and delivering that back to the customers. If you can't get that right, then running a restaurant may not be the best career for you.

There's been about three times in my life when I haven't left a tip, and this is one of them.

  • Visited July 2011
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

336 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    76
    104
    53
    45
    58
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Busy family friendly restaurant”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2011

This restaurant on the main street of Fort William was very busy and staff appeared to be quite stretched. The service was good but waiting for the bill took a while. The food was very well cooked and plentiful. Good pub fayre.

  • Visited July 2011
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“Fantasic place”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2011 via mobile

Arrived with no reservation but staff worked to offer us a table with no wait. My partner asked to alter her meal from the menu an this was done with no hassle at all. Staff, food and venue were superb can't offer any complaint.

    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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.
Southampton, United Kingdom
1 review
“Great Food ,Great Place !!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2011

We ate at hte Ben Nevis Bar on Friday night i was with a group of ten. It was very busy when we got there at about 7:30 and we hadn't booked a table. We were asked by a waitress if we would like a drink in the downstairs bar and we would be called in about 10 minutes as they would get a table ready for us. We got a drink and sat on the outside area which had a stunning view over looking the loch. We got called within 10 minutes that our table was ready. The resturant was packed staff were extremely busy but the pub had a really good atmosphere and we were looking foward to our evening. I had for starters pan fried scallops on a minted pea puree which was beautiful, cooked to perferction, for my main I had the gammon hock that also was great! All of our table throughly enjoyed our meals and were very well looked after by very attentive happy helpful staff. We got recommended the Jammie Dodger chessecake which was again fantastic and everyone who goes there should try it.

I would say to anyone visiting Fort William to go and eat at the Ben Nevis Bar as it is very good value for money, Great atmosphere, Great service and Exceptionally Good Food !!!!!!!! We will definetly return

  • Visited July 2011
    • 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.
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Not what it thinks it is!”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2011 via mobile

Ben bar was great, but went downhill rapidly in the restaurant upstairs. The starter of pate resembled lunchen meat, very course. The other starter of haggis and whiskey sauce had far too much sauce which had a mayonaise texture and oh so heavy. The mains where a disaster, the seabass sat on a rough mash floating in custard, pretending to be a hollandaise sauce badly split. The black pudding sat on a lumpy mash and the poached egg was a solid rubber ball. . . Awful. Pudding was given a wide berth.

    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Ben Nevis Bar and Restaurant also viewed

Fort William, Lochaber
Fort William, Lochaber
 

Been to Ben Nevis Bar and Restaurant? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Ben Nevis Bar and Restaurant, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.