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“Great pub food” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Hand & Flowers

The Hand & Flowers
126 West Street | The Hand and Flowers, Marlow SL7 2BP, England
+44 (0)1628 482277
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Ranked #3 of 58 restaurants in Marlow
Price range: $43 - $171
Cuisines: French
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romance, Doing business, Local cuisine, Special occasions, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Late Night, Dessert
Pease Pottage
Top Contributor
112 reviews 112 reviews
62 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 62 cities Reviews in 62 cities
94 helpful votes 94 helpful votes
“Great pub food”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2013

Had a great evening and stay at the Hand and Flowers. The accommodation was pleasant and had good amenities. There was a problem with the hot water (there wasn't any) which we reported and this was dealt with quickly and professionally and we received a complementary glass of champagne at the end of our meal.

The food on the whole was very good although the whitebait canapé was disappointing and felt like it had been cooked a while ago (we were seated at 8.45). Also the breads were lovely but went cold very quickly. The starters; haddock omelette and foie gras were excellent as was the duck for main course. The chocolate & ale cake was delicious but we didn't think much of the tot of ale you were meant to drink with the dish. Some background music wouldn't have gone amiss, by the time the tables filled up it was not a problem but when we first arrived it felt too quiet.

For a pub meal it was excellent and service was very good but you need to set your expectations to this and not get carried away with the 6 month waiting list and 2 Michelin stars.

Prices were reasonable - total meal (2 starters, 2 mains, 1 dessert + wine) was just over £100.

One thing worth bearing in mind is that although it's a pub there is no space to enjoy a pre dinner drink (even the 2 bar stools were reserved for dinner). We ended up ordering drinks in our room which was nice but of course only possible if you are staying! The High Street is a 5 - 10 minute walk away and there appeared to be a number of nice pubs and bars.

We would recommend and would like to return - just not sure it's worth a 6 month wait.

  • Visited February 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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1,202 reviews from our community

75% Recommend
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Japanese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Beaconsfield, United Kingdom
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Second Visit 'disappointing :('”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 20, 2013

Having enjoyed our first visit the Hand and Flowers we waited 8 months to sucessfully book a second visit...... so disappointing, we saw little if any changes to the menu, the £15.00 scallop starter was pretty average, the smoked haddock starter was good but not special or different. The lamb bun was dry stodgy visually bland and left a nasty aftertaste. The 'signature' duck main was inedibly tough, the side was way overseasoned in my opinion, however the chips were good. Opted out of desert as the people on the next table gave the souffle the thumbs down!!! All in all expensive and overated, I suspect its popularity is a backlash from Great British Menus. We went wondering when we would be able to book again and left without enquiring. On a positive note at least they noticed one main was hardly touched and took it off the bill, still cost just short of £140 for 2 courses albeit with wine.

  • Visited February 2013
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
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London, England, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“lived up to all expectations”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 20, 2013

Visited expecting big things and certainly wasn't disappointed. Service was faultless with staff seeming to know about every aspect of the menu. Food was cooked to perfection and ample portion size. Atmosphere was very different from my previous experience of michelin star restaurants with a laid back feel but make no mistakes claims of this being a 2* pub its by no stretch of the imagination a pub. Plenty to chose from on the menu and the separate extensive gin menu left my other half in awe. I cant recommend the hand and flowers enough for a informal but exquisite dining experience.

  • Visited February 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Coventry, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Pudding heaven”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2013

I visited the hand and flowers after seeing it on masterchef. The venue is very relaxed as previous reviews have stated. The canapes and bread were delicious and the service extremely attentive. I ordered the duck after seeing it on tv and have to say that I was a little disappointed. It was nice, but nothing as spectacular as I had imagined - I think it was a little overcooked. However the pudding was mouthwateringly delicious. I had the chocolate and ale cake. When you break into the centre and caramel oozes out It came with a small glass of ale which really complemented the flavour.

  • Visited February 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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Swindon, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Lived up to all expectations, GREAT value”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2013

We'd been hoping for good things from our first visit to The Hand & Flowers and left feeling more than happy with the experience.

Some of the comments on here seem a little bizarre. For example, while the tables aren't surrounded by acres of real estate, we didn't feel boxed in or constrained in the slightest. In fact, it was pleasant to be seated at a table large enough to spread our various drinks and dishes around with ease.

The food itself was a sheer delight. The complimentary whitebait and bread was a great opener to the meal, although I've still yet to find any sourdough outside of San Francisco that *really* nails it. Our starters (the Scallops and the Salmon Tartare) were both perfectly produced and presented, with, for me, the Salmon just having the edge.

The main courses of the Lamb and the Pork dish were, again, nothing short of perfection. We also had ordered the Broccoli side dish. In all honesty, we both struggled to find anything to criticise about either of the mains, although - being really harsh - my pork dish could have been a little warmer for my liking (although I freely admit I tend to prefer my food scalding hot).

Both desserts were superb, with the small glass of Quadruple Ale that came with one of them being an absolute highlight - delicious and brilliantly paired with the chocolate 'cake'.

Having been to a number of starred restaurants, the shine can sometimes be taken off the experience by leaving with a nasty sting from the final bill. That was certainly not the case here, if anything, the bottom line left us feeling even more glad we'd booked. Utterly amazing value. We're already planning our return visit.

  • Visited February 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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