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“Poor Service”

Mad Hatters Tearoom & Bakery
Ranked #2 of 9 Dessert in Chester
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $3 - $28
Cuisines: Cafe
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Lunch, Breakfast, Reservations
Description: Mad Hatters Tearoom & Bakery is located at the historic and unique building of The Rectory, 49 Bridge Street Row, within the city walls of Chester in Cheshire. With subtle English Tearoom eccentricity and a touch of 'Wonderland', visit Mad Hatters to enjoy our breakfasts, elevenses, light lunches, and Mad Hatters' speciality, Afternoon Tea. We also play host to private functions and corporate events with a full bespoke event planning service.
Reviewed February 15, 2014

Really disappointing service and overpriced. The tea shop was busy (at least 6 people waiting to be seated) and we were asked to queue among tables where others were eating and drinking, which was a little uncomfortable. Cakes were plated right next to where we waited, they were not covered and completely open to the air so looked dry. Needless to say we decided not to order those!
We were handed menus to look at yet once seated it took another 15 minutes to take the orders. Then a further 20 minutes to make the latte, flat white, scones and jam. Two of the scones were burnt so they were left.
During the time we were waiting for our order to arrive, we could hear numerous customers being told that the cakes they had requested from the menu had sold out.
Toilets leave a lot to be desired.
Shame as the menu was good with a lot of choice but we will not be returning!

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1  Thank B1983716
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed February 14, 2014 via mobile

Visited mid afternoon....our first visit....came across it by chance, we had seen it on TV & were excited to try some delicious cake. We were shown to our table with a menu. The waiter eventually came back to us to take out order. I asked if any cakes were available & he went to fetch a chalk board, but then I had to ask the prices. We chose cheesecake & it was pleasant but it was brought not from a display cabinet but from an uncovered cake stand in the window. What was missing ??? Lacking atmosphere and poor customer service. The tearoom was missing the quirkiness I would have expected and a display cabinet to show off the cakes available. At 3pm poor selection to choose from. Very disappointed.

Thank Ash178
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MadHatters T, Owner at Mad Hatters Tearoom & Bakery, responded to this reviewResponded February 18, 2014

Many thanks for your review, feedback is always appreciated but it's sad to read that you didn't particularly enjoy your visit.
As a small independent we're always baking new items for the tearoom so it's true, our cake/bake menu is handwritten on a small boards each morning giving us the flexibility to keep adding and changing our bakes and flavours. These boards are then presented to your table, as we give table service, if you would like to order a sweet treat. Our team are briefed in the morning about our days bakes and are on hand for you to ask questions as you did with regards to pricing.
Unfortunately we do not have room for a large cake counter as the building is narrow and grade2* listed, so our bakes are all popped in the window for our customers to see. We always work to environmental health guidelines and regulations and are very proud of our 5* rating.
With regards to the selection available at a 3pm visit, it's true, we can sometimes sell out of things quickly and even though we top up during the day from our kitchen it is sometimes inevitable that certain products will sell out - surely a good thing :) This also ensures our customers are only ever served fresh produce that is baked daily.
I'm not sure I can pinpoint what it is about your visit you didn't enjoy and warranted giving only two stars? If you would like to give us further feedback (specifically regarding your poor service comment) via email I can then address issues with our team and hopefully improve for your next visit.
Hopefully we will see you again.
Many thanks,
Ann & Kerri

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Reviewed February 14, 2014

I took a friend as a Thank you ...we were delighted with the home made cupcakes so tasty and reasonably priced too which is always a bonus !!
Great just to pop in have a coffee but beware you will end up with a cupcake even with the strongest will in the world one can not refuse such temptation of their wonderful creations
Look forward to my next visit

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Thank kathrynj572
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MadHatters T, Owner at Mad Hatters Tearoom & Bakery, responded to this reviewResponded February 16, 2014

Thank you so much for visiting and we're delighted that you both enjoyed your cakes :)
We'll look forward to welcoming you back soon!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 1, 2014

Visited Friday 2 .15 for afternoon tea .
Warm and cosy on a cold, wet and windy afternoon in Chester
Visited as Mother and daughter.
Our third visit, second visit for aftenoon tea.
My daughter wanted to revisit after watching Great British Bakery.
The selection of tea was good as was the selection of Cup Cakes, I would have like a choice of more traditional cake but this is wasnt a problem.
We ordered afternoon tea for two, but no egg sandwiches due to allergy
The Tea stand arrived and looked nice with our choice of Cup Cakes and a few extra bits.
We were served four rounds of bread between us , (nothing special) with a thin slice of ham and even thinner slice of tomato.
The cheese was very thin and had no taste , no chutney that I could find on thesandwichs .
My daughter came ,straight from work and pinched the last sandwich , she hasnt got a large appetite .
The crisps were the crumbs at the end of the packet , how bad is that , the salad I will add was lovely.
We were never offered any Salmon or Prawn options which is normal for a tea of this price.
The scones were nothing special, not even fresh .
I met with my daughter for a catch up and a bit of a treat, we have a had a lovely two course lunch with drinks (ok soft drinks) in Chester for less than this price £29.90.

WILL SAY NO MORE

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Thank pam d
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MadHatters T, Owner at Mad Hatters Tearoom & Bakery, responded to this reviewResponded February 16, 2014

Hello, thank you very much for your feedback. We hope you enjoyed Britain’s Best Bakery and lovely that you decided once again to re-visit us. It’s such a shame, and a little upsetting as owners, that as a returning customer you did not give us your feedback personally and posted a two star review here on trip advisor instead. It is obviously very disappointing to hear you did not enjoy your visit to Mad Hatters this time, and having had the Afternoon Tea for a second time it’s difficult to pinpoint specifically in your review how this Afternoon Tea differed to your last? We would very much appreciate having more information via email to fully understand your points raised here and how you feel things may be improved.
As you mentioned, our Afternoon Teas consist of 4 finger sandwiches per person with various fillings (in total, a full sandwich using two slices of bread, sliced into four), a salad with homemade dressing, Tyrrells handcut crisps, our homemade scones served with clotted cream, preserve and butter, a cake of your choice from our ever changing daily selection, 2 of our gorgeous homemade petit fours and unlimited tea and coffee for £14.95. We do feel this is a good fair price for our homemade, quality Afternoon Tea but of course we understand that all customers are different, and some of our customers end up boxing up their Afternoon Tea as they feel it is a little too much food! :) We do always use quality ingredients and this includes our sandwich fillings - locally sourced ham with wholegrain mustard, creamy Cheshire cheese with our homemade tomato chutney, free range egg mayonnaise, and a refreshing cucumber with black pepper. With regards to sandwich options we offer a pre-selected selection, but we do have salmon in the kitchen for both our Salmon Bagel and Eggs Royale dishes and could have catered to your request if you had asked your server. All of our food is also freshly prepared including our scones which are baked daily from scratch by ourselves ( hundreds a week-phew! :) ). It’s unfortunate that these are not to your taste, and if you would like to replace these with another item on your next visit please again, just ask our lovely team. We do apologise for the crisp crumbs that you had, this should never have been the case, it is an unfortunate mishap which we have brought to the attention of our chef. If you had mentioned it to your server we would have been more than happy to bring you more crisps.
It is unfortunate you weren’t entirely happy with our cake selection on the day of your visit. We do freshly bake our cakes daily and love to try new and different cakes all the time, trying to cater for everyone’s tastes as much as possible. We do however take bespoke orders so if there is something in particular you would like please do call us and we would be only too pleased to bake for you. Our cakes can sell very quickly, (despite us topping up the selections during the day!) but this ensures that all of our customers get only the freshest of cakes and our stocks rotate frequently.
It is a little confusing to us that on returning for your second Afternoon Tea you were unsatisfied and we really would appreciate you taking the time to give us further information so we can investigate further if you can. Many thanks once again, and we will look forward to hearing from you. We would also hope to welcome you back soon.
Kindest regards,
Ann & Kerri

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 31, 2014

I was previously a regular customer at this small cute looking café. I took my friend there for breakfast, excited to show her this little gem that I had found. We both ordered tea and Eggs Florentine. The wait was much longer than usual, something that I could have let by because previously there had been no problem. However, we both found large bits of shell in our breakfast, an issue we couldn't bring up immediately seen as we hadn't been asked if everything was okay. We told the staff as our food was taken away, a bit unhappy that we didn't receive an apology - it felt like we were being a incovenince. Nobody came to speak to us for 10 minutes afterwards so we proceeded to the till where we explained what happened to the girl. She went off to speak to the manager and returned telling us she couldn't give us any discount or do anything according to the manager. I told her I wasn't happy with that and the manager appeared (the gentleman who had taken our food and not apologised) who then told us that eggs have shells...his attitude was absolutely dreadful, he didn't come across the slightest big apologetic and spoke to us as if we were stupid. I mentioned that I understood that eggs have shells however they were large pieces to miss and ruined the meal entirely. His response was nothing but 'it's unfortunate' and 'it's one of those things'. He could not have cared less and showed no shred of being concerned that a regular customer had been really disappointed. I would return again if it were not for such a apathetic and rude manager.

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3  Thank Joannefrances
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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