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“Very Poor Meal....”

Mabel Crawford's Bistro
Ranked #200 of 657 Restaurants in Cork
Price range: $24 - $48
Cuisines: Irish
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Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups
Dining options: Private Dining, Reservations
Neighborhood: Centre
Description: Tucked away in the luxurious 18th century surroundings of the Vienna Woods Hotel, Crawford's is an intimate restaurant named after the former owners of this elegant country house. The dining room offers a secluded retreat from the nearby bustle of Cork city centre, with a sophisticated menu of international and Irish cooking. A popular buffet lunch is served on Sundays and children's entertainment is provided. Most of the suppliers are local and ensure that the restaurant gets the freshest locally grown and reared produce, delivered daily. The aim of Crawford's is to remain one of the most popular restaurants in Cork by offering value for money and a friendly yet professional service in a comfortable and relaxing setting. The team of qualified chefs have worked all over the world. Their combined flair and experience has established a style and presentation that encompasses international tastes in a modest and satisfying manner.
Reviewed January 19, 2014

a group of 8 of us dined here on a strong recommendation of a work colleague. the menu on line looked great so we booked. it was our first visit to the hotel.
when we arrived the car park was very full. we had a drink in the bar first. we finally found the restaurant after a bit of searching. nobody was there to greet and seat us as is usual. we made our way through the restaurant to a room at the back.
we were seated and given our menus. the table was a big old table which was poorly dressed with one cloth half covering it. the menu was completely different to the one on the web site. it was much shorter, offering chilli con cairne and sliced sirloin, and was quite brief in its offering. we enquired for the a la carte menu but were told that was the menu. it had changed dramatically. if we were in town we would have left the restaurant but we had to stay.
we seemed to be waiting about twenty minutes to order. the order was taken on an A4 refill pad which made us feel that this waiter didn't seem confident with our order. we also ordered wine.
after another twenty minutes our starters arrived. i had "tempura of cod". there were about 6 or 7 pieces accompanied by a large salad offering on the plate. the "tempura" was soggy and very overcooked. it was far too large and wasteful. the white, NZ, wine was warm on arrival. the waiter said that's how it should be! i asked him for a colder one but he said it wasn't possible. i asked for an ice bucket instead.
the other starters were not too great either with my guests. i ordered main course "rib eye beef". what arrived was certainly not a steak.. it seemed more like a slice off a carvery joint. it was gristly and not very tasty. it took over five minutes for our sides to arrive as there was only one waiter looking after us. it seemed as if the kitchen was so far away. nobody checked us during our mains or to top up wines. all in all a poor main course.
i ordered panacotta for dessert. it was rather tasteless. one of our group asked for ice cream with his apple crumble which never arrived. another asked for decaf coffee, to be told they didn't have it! another never got her espresso.
the bill came to €315. i paid by VISA but the waiter could not use the visa machine properly. i had to void his original mistaken transaction and put the correct one through! he never asked if we enjoyed our meal or said thanks or good night!
this hotel has a great reputation as a wedding venue. obviously the restaurant is an afterthought.
it was over priced, poor menu, poor service and overall a very negative dining experience.
we will not return.

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Thank TheTippTwins
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
FitzgeraldHotelGroup, Manager at Mabel Crawford's Bistro, responded to this reviewResponded February 14, 2014

Dear TheTipp Twins,

Thank you for your forthright review of your dining experience at Mabel Crawfords Bistro. We appreciate you taking the time to share your feedback as all information from our guests helps us to improve our service offerings. We're so disheartened to hear of your disappointing experience as that is highly usual for the quality of food in Mabels.

With the introduction of our new menu, our chefs have worked diligently to ensure high caliber food is consistently served. Please accept my sincere apologies regarding the event and rest assured that we will be investigating the situation fully and speaking with our culinary team.

We hope that you will consider visiting again and allow us the opportunity to serve you a quality meal that is our standard. Again, we're so sorry you were disappointed. Thank you for your feedback.

Kind Regards,
All the Team at Mabels Crawfords Bistro

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviews (68)
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34 - 38 of 68 reviews

Reviewed December 1, 2013

The prices are high & the food is OK - only because the company included dinner & the location forces the venue choice at the hotel. A have eaten there 3 times, steak sandwich, fish & steak all OK but not memorable. The place is dark that's OK if you're on a date but not mid week with your work colleagues, needed a torch to read the menu!! the music is terrible. Highlights though is the duck starter & the desserts plentiful. The service is good but again lack of personality & smiles / warmth in the welcome!

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Thank BriOH1878
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 10, 2013

The food was very good and plentiful....the only disapointment was the dining room which was small and lacked character but the staff and service were excellent.

Thank anne c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 7, 2013

Had our 2nd anniversary dinner here in July 2013. The decor is lovely and promised a good meal. I worked in this hotel around 15 years ago and I was interested to see how it had progressed. Firstly it was lacking in atmosphere, I would have liked some background music so that I could concentrate on our own conversation and not everyone else's. We went for the mixed platter to start but before that arrived our wine was served and this was corked. The manager was extremely nice and changed it immediately. The starter was disappointing, mostly deep fried and the salmon still had some plastic wrap around it, not very tasty to eat. My fish was nice at main course but my husband was disappointed with his steak. Would we eat there again, no, I would rather spend my money somewhere else as they made no attempt to apologise for he series of mishaps that took place throughout our dinner, so disappointed overall.

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Thank Clarebell1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
FitzgeraldHotelGroup, Manager at Mabel Crawford's Bistro, responded to this reviewResponded September 13, 2013

Dear Clarebell1,

Thank you for your review, we appreciate your comments and are always interested to hear customer feedback.

We regret the food was not to your satisfaction. We take great pride in our menu and quality of dishes, having been awarded guaranteed Irish membership. We are dedicated to sourcing local and Irish suppliers to ensure freshness of ingredients and as a result we can boast our recent nomination for Cork's Best Restaurant from the Restaurant Association of Ireland.

We would be delighted for you to contact us directly on marketing@viennawoodshotel.com to arrange a repeat visit to our restaurant so you can revisit the high quality of our food which we are so well known for in the area.

Kind Regards,
All the team here at Fitzgeralds Vienna Woods Hotel

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Reviewed August 30, 2013

Abdullah the restaurant manager went above and beyond for a family party recentl, which we only booked the day before. There were 20 of us seated in a private section and were very well looked after. This was handled with minimal fuss and they had a wedding going on at the same time.

the food was very good and the intimate atmosphere made for a very enjoyable family memory.

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Thank aitutaki1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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