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“A very pleasant nice pub” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Royal Oak

The Royal Oak
Ringwood Road, New Forest National Park, Ringwood SP6 2PB, England
01425 652244
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Ranked #32 of 58 restaurants in Ringwood
Cuisines: English
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Description: Country Pub turned into a restaurant
Croydon, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
119 reviews 119 reviews
91 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
“A very pleasant nice pub”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 4, 2013

Passed this pub after a bike ride and as it looked nice when back for lunch with the family.The Pub was busy on a Monday luch time and they were a cheff down so had to wait 30 minutes for our food.They had a good seelction of local beers and ciders.The food was nice we had Ham Egg and triple cooked chips and fish and chips along with one Chilli and all meals were very nice, service was abit fraught as they were busy and a bit under staffed but would go back again and price ok and it is a nice pub with a good garden and good parking

  • Visited April 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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16 reviews from our community

73% Recommend
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Dorset England
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
“Excellent food and service”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 18, 2013

When ever I visit my Mum we always take a drive through the forest and end up at a certain cafe for lunch . Today being a Monday the usual was closed. So we went to the nearest place as it was 1.45 and Mum was starving . It turned out to be a blessing as we found the Royal Oak . The Manager Mr Richard Bird was running the place on his own as the chief had phoned in to say he would not be in .
We ordered a ploughmans , jacket potato with tuna , a BLT and some chips .
All our food was prepared by the Manager and was excellent , my dish was the ploughmans and was the envy of the table . Good strong cheddar , tangie Blue cheese and ham that had so much flavour , warm rolls pickles etc.
the BLT was loaded with bacon with crisp lettuce and fresh tomato in a crusty baguette .
Jacket Potato was fresh the Tuna was plenty full and flavourful served with salad
the Chips were triple fried and so incredibly crispy Mum sais that she will be dreaming about these
Richard Bird was professional ,friendly and very efficient .
I can not wait to return here and certainly will not be going back to our usual place to eat the royal oak is far better
I will recommend the Royal Oak to everyone

  • Visited March 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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Bournemouth, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
100 reviews 100 reviews
52 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 53 cities Reviews in 53 cities
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
“Very pleasant pub”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 21, 2012

Situated overlooking the village green and pond, with ponies and donkeys always around; I occasionally pop in for a lunchtime pub and sandwich. Service was pleasant and fast; the sandwich was fine. Locals in evidence, so the pub is not only for visitors. Ale range limited to Ringwood.

  • Visited December 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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Salisbury, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Front of house the worst i have had at this level”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed October 12, 2012

We live in the New Forest and are always looking for a nice quaint pub with an excellent restaurant. The Royal Oak has all the looks, marketing, menu, decor to make you think this is the one. However, other than the initial welcome at the bar, the service was seriously lacking.

We went for a family celebration meal and as our youngest is 8 years old and goes to bed early, booked for a 6.30 meal for 5. On arrival, the atmosphere in the bar was lovely, quite busy for early in october. We sat in some great leather chairs and sofas around a welcoming fire for our pre dinner drinks, where we studied the menu with high expectations.

The main menu was split into appetisers, starters, mains and dessert. However, the specials menu had a rather confusing mixed up list of starters/mains. There was soup (4.50), scallops (8.95), lobster (17.00), steaks (17.00), Salad (9.95) amongst other choices. I was a little confused about what was a starter and what a main. I did not want to order two main courses by mistake!

Obviously the soup in a starter, but the scallops were described as "scallops with belly of pork and samphire" is a bit in-between but the price made me suspect it was meant as a starter. When i asked the waitress for clarification she said "what you get is the same whether a starter or main so it can be either" only lead to more confusion!

Anyway, we finally took a bit of gamble and i ordered the scallops as a starter. Good thing too as i was presented with 2 scallops (without roe and raw in the middle) a small strip of belly and a sprinkle of samphire - definitely a starter. Let me say at this point i am not blaming the chef, but there is a serious lacking in overall management linking the kitchen with the serving staff who seriously lack knowledge of the menu.

My husband had a good starter but having ordered duck breast was served with chicken as his main. It was taken away without question, but we were left with 4 of us having our mains and my husband with nothing. No explanation. No sorry sir we got it wrong and we will serve you in 10 minute - nothing. So the rest of us carried on eating our mains while he twiddled his thumbs.

Meanwhile 4 of us had ours mains. I would expect the waitress to ask "is there anything else you need?" but no. I had to ask for salt, a knife and fork (i used mine on the starter) and ketchup for the kids fish and chips. We got some ketchup in a posh jar, but i have to say it has to be the worst ketchup i have ever tasted. i have had better in a tube from a road side cafe. When i complained, the waitress was surly at best and actually rather rude. After 5 minutes i was still short of a knife and fork.

Usually under these circumstances i would have asked to see the manager and seriously complained. However we were out for a nice relaxed family meal and i did not want a scene and my children embarrassed. I went quietly to the bar and stated i was seriously unhappy with the service. The waitress just stood there and made no appology at all.

I am disgusted and will not be going there again. Take my advise and give a wide berth for dining, but seems nice as a pub.

  • Visited October 2012
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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Poole, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
260 reviews 260 reviews
153 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 77 cities Reviews in 77 cities
125 helpful votes 125 helpful votes
“Nice pub but a bit pricey”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2012

This pub can be found on the edge of the New Forest and is a little off the beaten track between Ringwood and Fordingbridge in the village of North Gorley, it would be advisable to use a map or satnav to find it. There is plenty of parking at the front and on the opposite side of the road.

The front garden is enclosed with a fence due to there being lots of animals, ponies, donkeys and cattle roaming free in the forest. There are plenty of tables at the front and most of these were taken as it was a nice night.

The building is clearly old with beams and thatched roof. There is a huge oak tree just outside. Inside is ultra modern with wooden floors and nice tables and chairs. The toilets were also very modern and spotlessly clean. There was good quality soap and hand cream.

There is also a huge rear garden with an extensive children's play area

We reserved a table at this pub as it was a Friday night and we were meeting a friend for a Birthday meal and expected the place to be packed out. Inside there were a few tables occupied but it was not overly full.

There was a regular menu plus a specials menu which the waitress brought for us to peruse whilst a drinks order was taken. We were given the option to order bread and olives but decided to wait and have a starter.

The choice was reasonable but pricey at £7.50 to £8 per item and we opted for prawn cocktail and chicken liver parfait with brioche. The prawn cocktail was impressive with the sauce whipped into a mousse. It was a generous size with plenty of prawns and salad in the bottom.
The parfait was a quinelle with two pieces of brioche and a tiny square of quince jelly.

For mains we chose a beef burger that came with chips and a choice of cheese topping - we chose Stilton. We also had fishcakes and a steak and kidney pie. For some dishes the sides were extra such as mash or vegetables although the pie came with mash and there was spinach with the fish cakes. Mains were £10 upwards.

The pudding list was uninspiring and expensive at £7.50 to £8 for chocolate brownie, or rhubarb crumble. The cheaper option was two scoops of New Forest ice cream at £3.50.

The staff were young, friendly and attentive, sometimes coming back more often than necessary as they were not that busy. By 9pm most people inside had gone and the staff had cleared the tables, put away the cruet and were standing around the bar as if ready to go home.

Overall it is a nice pub with a good atmosphere but the food is top end on price. The total bill with drinks came to just over £70.

  • Visited August 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 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.

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