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“Good service but food underwhelming”
Review of William & Victoria

William & Victoria
Ranked #14 of 440 Restaurants in Harrogate
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $13 - $33
Cuisines: European, British, Wine Bar
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Large groups, Bar scene, Business meetings, Local cuisine
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Brunch, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Buffet, Free Wifi, Full Bar, Highchairs Available, Private Dining, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Street Parking, Waitstaff
Description: An independent family run restaurant and wine bar serving traditional British food in the heart of Harrogate. William & Victoria has developed a reputation for great food served in a relaxed and unfussy style. Hearty Yorkshire portions of locally sourced meat and fish served in a cosy wine bar/bistro that oozes character and personality with a buzz created by it's popularity with locals that you will find any day of the week. The wine bar is open all afternoon serving a variety of drinks along with bar tapas. Owner and front of house, David Straker, is at the 'helm' most evenings and on hand to recommend wines from an extensive and well balanced wine list. More spacious dining areas with seating for 50 people, along with another well stocked bar, is situated upstairs along with a private dining room ideal for business entertaining and private parties. William & Victoria host a variety of regular wine tasting dinners. William & Victoria has recently gone through an extensive sympathetic refurbishment.
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
22 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Good service but food underwhelming”
Reviewed February 12, 2013

A party of 15 of us ate here on Saturday night, in the upstairs dining room. I am vegetarian and there was a limited choice of two mains (I think!), and a similar number of starters - this is pretty standard for many restaurants admittedly, but I also know plenty of nice/upmarket restaurants that are happy to go the extra mile for vegetarian customers, as standard. The menu does state that vegetarians can request information about additional options, but the hectic atmosphere on Saturday night meant that it didn't feel appropriate for me to go down this route - we just wanted to get the orders placed.

The meat eaters in the party mainly went for steaks and pork and most of them commented that their meat wasn't worth 20 quid, which was the average price for a steak (excluding sides). The dining room itself had a nice feel, and the staff were on the ball with the challenge of a large group, but I came away feeling underwhelmed by the food. My vegetarian pie was one of those where you have a bowl of filling with a pastry lid on top, which I think should be made clear when ordering because it wasn't as filling as I had expected, so I could have ordered more sides to compensate.

Our bill worked out to be £110 per couple (so £55 per head), and we didn't have any coffee or desserts although a few shots were ordered by members of the group.

We don't live in Harrogate but have family there so are frequent visitors, and I doubt we'd visit again - several of the group are regulars to William and Victorias and the general consensus seems to be that it wasn't as good as it used to be. I wouldn't recommend for vegetarians.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Amprev9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
David_Straker, Owner at William & Victoria, responded to this review, February 22, 2013
Whilst I understand your frustration at there being a more limited choice for vegetarians, it is not practical to have numerous vegetarian dishes on our menu, as we have found there is not a huge demand and this is why we prefer to offer the flexibility of cooking something to order to an individual's taste. I am sorry you did not feel comfortable asking for more options and this is something we will try to address.

The steaks which many of your party chose, are indeed the most expensive items on the menu but this is in line with other restaurants and reflects the quality of the meat which is sourced from the highly regarded North Yorkshire R&J Butchers. The pork dishes that were available on that night ranged from £11.95 to £13.95 and have been popular with other diners.

We are familiar with some members of your group and are surprised that they felt this way as they most certainly did not give the impression that they had not enjoyed the meal. We would much rather people would point out any dissatisfaction with their meal at the time so we can do something about it.

You have highlighted that the cost of the meal was £55 per head. I would like to point out that the 'few shots' that were ordered by members of the group were in fact 30 shots coming to a total of £120. Whilst I commend you on your choice of wine and appreciate the amount your party has spent, the ten or so bottles of Fleurie at £30 a bottle and our house rosé at £16.95 a bottle, would have contributed to the drinks bill being in excess of £350 and therefore a relatively large spend per head, despite not having desserts.
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878 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Japanese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Leeds
Level Contributor
32 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Disappointed”
Reviewed February 9, 2013

William and Vic's has always had a great reputation and we were looking forward to a meal to celebrate a friends Birthday.
Unfortunately we left disappointed, we arrived on time for our booking and waited around 20 minutes to be seated, when we finally sat down we were very short of space, the table would have been more suited to 4 people rather than the 6 of us. We placed our orders for food and wine, the starters arrived on time and were OK, we asked for a jug of iced water but were told they were short on jugs and gave us a complementary bottle of mineral water, unfortunately this was at room temperature. Next came the main courses, I had ordered a plain medium rare steak, a steak arrived with a sauce and accompaniments, I reconfirmed my order and the plate disappeared, a minute later my plain steak arrived, I'm never happy when the staff aren't exactly sure who's steak is who's, I always feel you end up what's left. The side dishes for 6 people also arrived and the size of the table resulted in these being squeezed in to fit and hanging over the edge of the table, not ideal and making us feel even more cramped. The 3 sirloin steaks were all poor, tough, fatty and not well cooked, we complained and were offered a reduction in price.
Overall a disappointing night out, the table was far too small, the service was at best average, mainly young inexperienced girls, the food was poor and bland, we left feeling we were just another party to serve and no one seemed to really care, sad really, this place had such a great reputation.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank CADS9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
David_Straker, Owner at William & Victoria, responded to this review, February 11, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to review us. We always want customers to enjoy their time with us and, despite doing our best to rectify your complaints on the evening, we have failed in achieving this. We have taken your comments on board and I am very sorry that you had a disappointing experience with us.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Harrogate, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
53 reviews
40 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
“Wonderful service , food and value”
Reviewed February 9, 2013

Loved it all. We go regularly.. Birthday outing. Fine food. The staff were amazing as always and the wine cold and plentiful! thank you for a lovely day !

Visited February 2013
Helpful?
Thank harrogatefoody-76
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
David_Straker, Owner at William & Victoria, responded to this review, February 9, 2013
Thank you for your lovely review, we look forward to your next visit.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lake District Uk
Level Contributor
19 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Consistently excellent.”
Reviewed February 5, 2013

My wife and I travel to Harrogate during the day on an irregular frequent basis and always lunch at W&V's. There is an option of £10 for 2 courses (limited choice) or the very extensive range of starters and main courses. The wine recommendations are invariably spot-on; cater for a very catholic taste and are reasonable whether for a single glass from the many open bottles, or for a whole one. I have taken larger parties here at lunchtimes (hungry wildboar shooting types) but they left well satisfied and were happy not to have to eat again for 7 1/2 hours. The service is invariably good and in 8 years we have only ever once had a poor dish (removed from the bill instantly). I have never had a bad wine there.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank marrsbar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
David_Straker, Owner at William & Victoria, responded to this review, February 11, 2013
Thank you for your feedback and continued custom. We look forward to seeing you again soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Grimsby, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
121 reviews
72 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
“Excellent service and food. Good atmosphere”
Reviewed February 1, 2013

Very busy restaurant but service was excellent and food arrived quickly. The Lamb Henry was excellent. Only fault was the Eton Mess was not to my taste but staff apologised and were very quick to volunteer to remove the cost from the bill. Champagne we ordered was not in stock but an excellent replacement was offered. Faultless service. Good atmosphere.

  • Visited January 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Catemo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
David_Straker, Owner at William & Victoria, responded to this review, February 9, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to review us. Sorry the Eton Mess was a bit too creamy for you but pleased that everything else made up for it. We hope to welcome you back soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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