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“Birthday Meal Jan 14” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Priest House

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Priest House
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Kings Mills, Castle Donington DE74 2RR, England   |  
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Complimentary Champagne
Derby, United Kingdom
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
“Birthday Meal Jan 14”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 1, 2014

We were all looking forward to my Birthday meal at the Priest House restaurant.
We arrived early and had drinks in the hotel bar, the hotel itself is set in lovely surrounds, the bar is decorated to a high standard and the staff on arrival were very pleasant. I would not go there just for a drink 1 x Budweiser 1x keg beer and 1 x bottle coke came to over £10.

The staff were very friendly throughout our meal especially as the restaurant got very busy, they initially seemed to cope well.

We booked for 7pm which was a good choice as our meals were brought at within a reasonable timescale. As the night went on the service seemed to slow a bit as the restaurant was full.

We got our desserts followed by coffee but they omitted the petit fours.
We had a joke with the waitress as it took some time because my wife asked for a floater coffee and the young man had never made one before, the coffee was good though. (more training needed for staff)
Pros: The different selection of breads were of a high standard. Service reasonably good. Location excellent.

cons: The cheapest bottle of wine was about £40 for a standard bottle of rose'.

The total food bill for three people was £150.

I think overall the food lacked substance, it was good but it was more style over substance.

I had the scallop starter, bad choice! I had one scallop sliced into three with various bits on the plate for show. The cockles were full of grit and the scallop had very little taste. There was very little seasoning and it was more the size of an amuse bouche than a starter.

The main was ok but was more fitted to gastro pub rather than fine dining.
I had fish on a bed of wilted greens and pomme puree. There was very little flavour to the fish and very little seasoning throughout, the strong iron flavour from the wilted greens overpowered the whole dish. it was ok but something you could easily knock up at home.
My wife and daughter both had duck. When it came to the table it looked great, however the duck was served two ways, the breast had been cooked Sous-vide ("under vacuum") which was not apparent by reading the menu, it was difficult for my 13 year old daughter to eat as it was slightly bloody in the middle. I tried a small piece and it tasted of nothing. the leg had been confied and was a little dry.

We had the assiete (selection of puddings) to end which was probably the best bit of the meal however it was on the small side each element was two spoonful's each. (go to world service in Nottingham to see how it is supposed to be done).

The plates left a black mark on the table cloth on each serving ( maybe need to clean where the plates are warmed)
The table cloths had folds in them (back to basics 2 min hot iron on each table before service)

I left the servers a tip as they worked really hard, I left a little disappointed at the standard of food and would take some persuading to dine there again.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gwyn J, General Manager at Priest House, responded to this review, March 11, 2014
Thank you for your constructive review, naturally I was disappointed to read about the inconsistencies you experienced during your celebration dinner. The menu in the Restaurant changes quarterly to reflect the seasonal food available. Drinks prices at the priest House are benchmarked quarterly against both the local hotels and High St restaurants but also against other Hand Picked Hotels to ensure that we remain competitively-priced; I am sorry that you found them to be higher than you anticipated.

Our Restaurant is a 2 Rosette Restaurant and undergoes regular inspections to keep this status. I am sorry that your experience did not reflect the quality and standard associated with this accolade.

I hope you will return and if you do plan to do so, please contact me directly so I can personally welcome you back I do hope that we will have the pleasure of welcoming you back to the Priest House in the very near future.

Kind regards,

Gwyn
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423 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (94)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Derbyshire, England
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 22, 2014

Have just spent a very pleasant couple of hours enjoying afternoon tea at this Hotel. It was bought as a birthday gift for my husband and we would both absolutely recommend it. My husband is a very fussy eater and only likes plain food. That wasn't a problem at all. We mentioned this when booking and a young man called Dan arranged a choice of sandwiches to meet his requirements. We were looked after by a delightful young lady named Rosie who explained what different choices of tea were available; and there were lots; and the pot was refilled as many times as wanted. There was also a very nice selection of cakes, not to mention a delicious cream scone. I wasn't sure how filling an afternoon tea would be, but I can assure you, both of us were quite full by the end of it. At no time were we rushed; it was delightfully relaxing; a wonderful way to spend an afternoon.

Room Tip: I can only comment on the room we ate tea in as we were not staying at the hotel.
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gwyn J, General Manager at Priest House, responded to this review, January 28, 2014
Thank you for taking the time to complete a review on Trip Advisor.

At the Priest House we ensure all team members are kept up to date with regards to reviews so we can where necessary learn and improve on constructive feedback. I know they will be delighted with your review highlighting the positive attitude they displayed during your visit.

On behalf of the team I look forward to welcoming you all back to the Priest House in the near future.

Regards,

Gwyn
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
England
Top Contributor
103 reviews 103 reviews
44 hotel reviews
Reviews in 56 cities Reviews in 56 cities
110 helpful votes 110 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2014 via mobile

Pleasant staff and a very pretty location for a large family reunion but such slow service on a busy Saturday night. We waited for 40 minutes before we were even offered bread and an hour before the pre ordered starters arrived. Unacceptable even if they were very busy. A sense of no overall management in the dining room. The staff were young and friendly but let down by some serious issues in the kitchen. Food was fine when it came but so late that we had to put children to bed before dessert. Breakfast was better and we had a nice party with perfectly nice, though not exceptional bedrooms.

Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gwyn J, General Manager at Priest House, responded to this review, January 28, 2014
Thank you for registering your recent review on Trip Advisor.

It is disappointing to read a report such as this. We are always receptive to feedback about our product and service and are work tirelessly to make continuous improvements. To do this we always listen to honest and constructive comments from our guests and visitors even when it is uncomfortable to do so.

I am very keen to understand fully what happened and would ask you to contact me directly or email me at gbjones@handpicked.co.uk

Regards,

Gwyn Jones
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leeds
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 17, 2014

I stayed here at the end of November for a two day business meeting. The hotel is set in a secluded location at the end of a long road, right next to the river. I imagine this is lovely in the summer, unfortunately it was freezing whilst I was there so didn't get to make the most of it.

Refreshments during our meeting were outstanding. Warm bacon finger sandwiches, croissants and pain au chocolat on arrival, then sausage rolls and cake for mid morning snack and chicken kebabs and more cake/cookies for afternoon snack. Meeting room was nice and large and airy.

We are in the restaurant at lunch and there was a choice of two hot dishes and cold meat and salad.

Bedrooms were furnished lovely, not that large but cosy and clean with all amenities required.

We had a private dinner in a small room near the bar, again food was good. The bar area is cosy and had a large range of drinks available. Breakfast the following morning was good, I ordered off menu and this wasn't a problem.

Overall this is a lovely hotel, with very friendly attentive staff. Would recommend staying here.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gwyn J, General Manager at Priest House, responded to this review, January 28, 2014
Thank you for your review and for all the fantastic comments with regards to the food and the staff. Your review means even more to us due to the fact that you would recommend the hotel.

We can’t wait to welcome you back to the Priest House Hotel again in the near future.

Regards,

Gwyn
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nottingham, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
73 reviews 73 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
70 helpful votes 70 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 28, 2013

We had 'elevenses' - a kind of savoury afternoon tea. The service was excellent and the food was wonderful. You even get to choose your blend of tea by sniffing samples in jars brought to your table. (Russian Caravan was good.) The selection of savouries included coddled egg with brioche fingers, cheese scone, haddock and leek tart, black pudding and apple sausage roll. It was all very high standard.

It's not cheap at £17.95 a head, but it's worth it.

Lovely setting too. We had a window table and could watch the River Trent going by while we ate.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gwyn J, General Manager at Priest House, responded to this review, January 28, 2014
Thank you so much for taking the time to write a review of your recent visit to the Priest House. I was delighted to read that you had a fabulous time and you found the food to be of such a high standard,.

We look forward to welcoming you back to the hotel in the future. Thanks again for your kind words.

Regards,

Gwyn
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nottingham, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 47 cities Reviews in 47 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 23, 2013

Having had a really nice Christmas Dinner at the Priest House a couple of years ago we decided to have a family pre-Christmas Sunday Lunch this year.

On booking I was given the option to book a table in the dining room (as as opposed to the brasserie).

After our ordering our meal (selecting the Festive Menu) we were escorted to a table in the brasserie. On querying this we were told we were the only party to request a table in the dinning room. So we assume it was not worth opening it just for four of us. Annoyingly nothing had been mentioned about this up to that point or we would have gone elsewhere.

The food on all courses was well presented and of a good standard. Staff were pleasant and helpful and quickly responded to our request for a table in a more private area.

However, apart from a tree and carols on the sound system there seemed to be a complete lack of anything festive. Whilst I would't advocate 'tat' I think more effort could have been made to give a more festive feel.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gwyn J, General Manager at Priest House, responded to this review, January 28, 2014
Thank you for taking the time to write a review about your guest experience. I was delighted you found the food to be well presented and to a good standard ad the hotel team to be helpful and quick to respond to your requests. However I was disappointed to learn of your frustrations that you encountered during your visit.

Please be assured that I have shared your feedback with my colleagues so that they are fully aware of how you felt. Should you wish to discuss this further please do not hesitate to contact me directly via email gbjones@handpicked.co.uk

Regards,

Gwyn
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cheshire
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 22, 2013

Following a day at Uttoxeter races, we stayed overnight at the Priest House Hotel under one of their special deals, which included a bottle of champagne, dinner bed and breakfast.
We were favourably impressed. The Hotel telephoned first thing in the morning to advise us that there was a function involving a disco in the evening, and while it was scheduled to finish not too late, we were offered an alternative quieter room. Upon arrival at the Hotel, we decided to remain in the original room overlooking the River which proved absolutely fit for purpose, comfortable and the extra noise was not intrusive.
The Table d’hôte menu was good, and the quality of the cooking excellent. I enjoyed my Partridge and Squab Pigeon starter, and saddle of venison which followed. . The sweets showed the touch of an accomplished chef.
The wine list was well chosen and the prices were by no means outrageous. We service in both the restaurant and the front of house reception was cooperative, friendly and helpful.
Breakfast the following morning was typical of any reasonable hotel, and my wife enjoyed the porridge with honey. If I were needing accommodation in the area, it would be on my list of hotels at which to stay.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gwyn J, General Manager at Priest House, responded to this review, January 28, 2014
Thank you for your ‘Wonderful’ review on Trip Advisor.

I was pleased to read that you found all aspects of your stay to be excellent and that you would wish return to the hotel.

On behalf of the team may I thank you for your kind words and I look forward to welcoming you back to the Priest House in the near future.

Regards,

Gwyn Jones
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Priest House

Address: Kings Mills, Castle Donington DE74 2RR, England
Phone Number:
Location: United Kingdom > England > Derbyshire > Castle Donington
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
#3 Luxury Hotel in Castle Donington
#4 Business Hotel in Castle Donington
#5 Romantic Hotel in Castle Donington
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Priest House 4*
Number of rooms: 42
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Priest House Hotel Castle Donington
Priest Hotel Castle Donington
Priest House Castle Donington, United Kingdom

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