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“Good pub food”
Review of The Cowherds

The Cowherds
Ranked #203 of 905 Restaurants in Southampton
Price range: $7 - $25
Cuisines: British, Gastropub, Wine Bar
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Breakfast, Lunch, Reservations
Description: The Cowherds in Southampton is a country pub & restaurant oozing rural charm and rustic character. Our picturesque surroundings provide the perfect backdrop for savouring the hearty, seasonal pub-food on our menu, and the carefully nurtured cask ales and fine wines gracing our bar. Well behaved dogs are welcome in the tiled section of our pub. Choose from casual and formal dining Monday to Friday, same menu.
Reviewed October 20, 2013 via mobile

I think based on the other reviews we got very lucky with the service. There was no waiting around, no cold food and chasing waiters. For a pub, the service was actually quite good. I'm always impressed when a waitress can take eight drinks orders and eight food orders at the same time without having to write it down!!

The pies were delicious. The portions were huge. Excellent value for money.

Thank Littleferrett
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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896 - 900 of 1,174 reviews

Reviewed October 19, 2013

The first thing you notice about The Cowherds is how amazingly authentically old it is. Really! So wonderfully old that you might think you're on a Hollywood movie set.... super low ceilings, huge, rustic fireplaces and worn exposed beams. This is a place to sit back, slow down, order a drink and just take it all in. Yes, the menu has the requisite fish and chips (2 varieties, very popular and very delicious) but also very interesting pot pies. My husband loved the beef and merlot pie. Our dessert éclair was better than the éclair we had been served in Paris just a week before.
The staff were perhaps a bit over worked as we could never quite figure out who was our actual waiter and had to ask for water and condiments twice. However, the bartender was friendly and served a mean Gin and tonic and a wonderfully thick Guinness!
We left full, happy and very pleased to have experienced a little bit of English history.

Thank Millie G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 16, 2013

On a Saturday lunchtime and not having made a booking, the six of us had to sit outside. the table started out in the sun, but long before we had finished we were very chilly. It was impossible to get a table inside. The standard of service was not high and we waited a long time, wrong menus, no cutlery, no condiments/sauces, dessert forgotten etc. however, we couldn't fault the food. The children's menus were of a good standard and their fish and chips very good, as were our BLTs, and the overall cost was most reasonable.

Thank silvertraveller0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 16, 2013

The Cowherds is ok for a pub lunch. Yet it used to be a lot better. It's still priced quite well, however portion size has got smaller and smaller over the years to the point it's getting quite sad. Approx 10/12 chips with a meal is not good. I know this place very well since mid 90s and although its always been part of a brand (Vintage Inns) its changed and not for the better. It's lost it's soul, there is no figure head running this place, used to have a great landlord years ago, a big Northern lad, big smile, ran the place well. Lots of the food back then was actually made on the premises by the chefs, not any more. It's all bought in and cooks (that's being polite) warm and send out your food. It's a real shame as its one of Southampton's key pubs. Needs to be privately owned and fresh food brought back. The Chilworth Arms is owed and operated by the same company and its also a brand believe it or not (although kept quiet) and they seem to pull off that private operator feeling and the food is better (although service there is not good at times either) Staff need to smile more and give a better service, although this maybe stems from poor Management?
Prob still a gold mine for the company though... Just wish they would do proper specials as well. Not ones from a rolling company menu (not special) but specials that the cooks actually came up with, cooked fresh, used local and seasonal produce. Is this too much to ask for one or two dishes like this? Probably...
All in all, it's still worth a visit for a (small) scampi/fish and chips, as long as your not too peckish ;)

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank DarkandStormy17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 14, 2013

We rang the phone number before we went to ask a question about roast dinners, as we couldn't find the information on the website. The phone rang for a while, then eventually someone picked up the phone and immediately slammed it right back down again. As we couldn't get the information we needed, we decided to go to a different pub for our Sunday lunch instead.

I understand that the staff may be incredible busy on a Sunday, but if you're going to pick up the phone, is it really too much trouble to briefly explain that they're too busy to take the call and to try again in a few minutes? Even just letting the phone ring indefinitely would have conveyed the message and been far preferable to such rudeness.

    • Service
1  Thank Tom W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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