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“Fabulous lunch with family & friends” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of St. James - CLOSED

St. James
Price range: $32 - $86
Cuisines: Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups
Dining options: Dinner, Highchairs Available, Reservations, Seating, Waitstaff
Dining style: Casual Dining
Bishops Stortford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
97 reviews
78 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
“Fabulous lunch with family & friends”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 28, 2012

I first visited this restaurant just over a year ago and was taken then with the quality of the food. Visited again on Monday with 5 others for lunch and was not dissapointed. Fabulous roast quail with chorizo and lentils as a starter and duck breast (nicely pink) with chorcy as a main. The signature toblerone cheescake was OK witha fruit confit.

We had a botle of prosecco and another bottle of wine along with water and some other drinks. The bill for 6 was a reasonable £269.

The main dining room was very quiet and service may be a bit vague if it was really busy. However, we were in no hurry whatsoever so the odd lapse in time didn't matter.

Would I go back? - absolutely

  • Visited August 2012
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Chris H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

47 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    11
    18
    6
    6
    6
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Hertfordshire, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
124 reviews
72 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
“Lovely food, good service”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 28, 2012 via mobile

Great menu. Lovely food. Good value and service. However, we were a party of six and there was one other couple in the restaurant at the time. I can't really fault anything.

Helpful?
Thank Kim_sunseeker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“What happened to 'the customer is always right'?”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 29, 2012

Myself and my girlfriend booked a table at the restaurant hoping to make use of a popular diners club discount, this diners club is members only and offers access to 1000's of establishments throughout the country with a 2 for 1 offer or 50% off the food bill. We both ordered a main course (the chicken breast and the cod with gnocci) each and a bottle of wine, the food was decent but nothing special considering the price point.

The problem came when we tried to settle the bill, I showed the manager my discount card and he proceeded to inform me, quite rudely, that we were required to have had a starter/main or main/desert combination in order to get the discount. This was a surprise to me as we were careful to check the rules when we booked the table, on the website and then when we ordered and were told it was 2for1 on all main courses. The manager was adamant that we were in the wrong and insistent that we sit back down and order a desert! He was rude and dismissive throughout our exchange and it was only when other diners started to pay attention to what I was saying did he relent and make the discount.

We were planning to return with our parents but needless to say I will not be going back to St James, we were actually quite enjoying our evening until the manager left a sour taste in our mouths.

What happened to the customer is always right????

  • Visited July 2012
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Crouch_Ender01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
23 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Problem resolved without fuss”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 21, 2012

Had dinner with a friend at this venue on a warm summer's night and the atmosphere was lovely sitting by the wide open windows we had the advantages of being outdoors but none of the hassle. We thought the trio of salmon on melba toast starter was exquisite and the roast rump of lamb was served to perfection with lovely accompanying julienne-style vegetables. On the other hand, the grilled haloumi with crushed tomatoes and salad was barely cooked. However, when we pointed this out, the dish was whisked away with no fuss and only a very few minutes later a completely new dish of haloumi properly cooked with a fresh serving of all the original trimmings was brought with apololgies.

Tip for those drinking sparkling wine by the glass - the blanc de blancs is very good and at under a fiver much better value than prosecco at £7 or champagne at £8.

Very good cooking and on our visit, very good service too - efficient but not intrusive.

  • Visited June 2012
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank 19SeasonedTraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
52 reviews
30 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
“Great food, patchy service”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 18, 2012

I go here a lot with Himself, with friends or with the teenager. The food is well cooked with regular changes on the menu so there is always something new to try and crucially lovely puddings. I've never had a meal that was less than good here and often it is very good. The wine list is excellent and the atmosphere is buzzy in the evenings and friendly by day, with prices that are very reasonable for the calibre of the food. They understand the local market well catering for a variety of -- let's call them "food preferences"; it produces high chairs or small meals for small people with a smile but has enough atmosphere to inspire the best behaviour. One of the nicest things on the menu is the selection of bread with balsamic vinegar and half a bulb of meltingly delicious, slow roasted garlic. Areas that could do with work are consistency of service which varies from the "highly-attentive/ couldn't fault" it to the "am I actually supposed to serve customers and not stand around chatting?" If you aren't hungry or in a rush you may not mind but I think it's worth announcing at the start that you don't have a huge amount of time. In the winter it can be very drafty in the attractive bar area and I'm hoping they will sort out some sort of door system that solves this problem before next year. The one disappointment I have had here is the cocktails; it looks like the perfect place to have a mojito in the hand -- is it all the black marble? -- but my three attempts at cocktails have been somewhere between unrecognisable and undrinkable so now I have the wine instead. The cocktails at Monkey Nuts across the road are exemplary so there is clearly nothing in the atmosphere in Crouch End that precludes competent mixology. It's my third favourite place to eat locally and definitely top for breakfast. I'm very tempted to pop down now, in fact!

  • Visited May 2012
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
2 Thank Discerninguest
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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