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“Perfect!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of The Company Shed

The Company Shed
Ranked #36 of 465 Restaurants in Colchester
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Seafood
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Kids, Families with children, Local cuisine
Dining options: Lunch, Breakfast, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
157 reviews
85 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
“Perfect!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 3, 2013

Blue sky, May sunshine, crisp white wine, fresh bread and seafood. What more can you ask for?

This is a minimalist run place. Don't expect fancy tables and posh crockery / cutlery. This is the 'take it how you find it approach'. So, a few details.

Its open throughout the day (apart from Mondays). Despite what others have written, it is very much a first come first serve basis and no, you can't book. Yes, there are sometimes tables spare which is due to a mis-match between the available seats and the queue that is amassing. If you really pay attention, there is a blackboard list behind the counter which shows the number of people waiting and their party size. My advice - get there just before mid-day to avoid the lunch time rush (say 11.45).

To order you go up to the counter (so I'm not really sure of the customers who were mentioning a long wait - its not table service!). We enjoyed our bread and wine whilst waiting for a seafood platter - which was for two but did for three of us (and we still took a doggie bag away). I am always pleased when the serving staff offer advice and being told that we only needed one salad between three of us was sage advice ... it was more than sufficient.

The platter had mackerel, smoked salmon, crab, crevettes, prawns (peeled and with their shells) plus mussels.

The staff were very pleasant and had a lovely sense of humour. From what I can see, the maitre d' today balanced the various needs of those already sitting down eating with those waiting. Its not an easy job and he appeared to manage the fine balance very well.

All our seafood was fresh and very tasty. We didn't explore other items on the menu, but my parents have been before and said that they are equally as delicious. Despite it being a busy Friday lunchtime we were not hurried or chased out, but allowed to enjoy our meal at our own pace.

For parking, there is a municipal car park a short distance away (20p for 2 hours). You may need to hang around there for someone to vacate - its not that big!

If you really want fine dining, then this isn't the place for you. If you want honest food at reasonable prices (£11.50 per person for the platter) then this is the real deal!

  • Visited May 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
2 Thank SLLushi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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608 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Niigata, Japan
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“reasonable, but.. be careful of raw oysters..!”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 1, 2013

Everything was reasonably priced, we enjoyed both cooked and raw oysters in november 2012.
But...I became really sick one day after the visit..! vomiting and diarrhea for a half day! I guess it was due to novovirus or something similar...
Anyway, no problem with cooked food. BUT.. I will not eat raw oysters here in future..!

  • Visited November 2012
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank oysterlover12345
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Roquefort les Pins, France
Level Contributor
8 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“My favourite restaurant”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 28, 2013 via mobile

My all time favourite restaurant, I eat here two or three times a year (whenever I visit the UK) If you enjoy sea food, and shell fish, this is probably the best place in the world, everything is REALLY fresh and brilliantly cooked. In order to eat here there are a few steps to take:

1. Arrive by 11:30
2. Bring your own wine a good bottle of Sauvignon blanc (Villa Maria strongly recommended)
3. Bring your own bread, fresh and crusty, there is a tesco in tiptree, that can help out.
4. Not sure I should share this... Order the specials on arrival, they run out...

Order different "plates" and share!

I have never left here thinking other than I want to return and live in the UK, (the rain in the next couple of days soon sorts that out)

It is not a romantic restaurant, but has a special Charm, if you are man enough, and she likes something different it can make a fantastic meal. For two do not expect a single table but a shared table, all part of the charm. My partner loved it. But I have met some woman that would not be impressed, but then again, not the kind of woman I want to know, each to their own.

I am in two minds to leave this review, the restaurant is already VERY busy and I do want to continue eating there, at the same time I want to make sure they have a good review, the bad reviews I have read do not understand that this is a bit special, and is not a typical restaurant.

Visited April 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank Andrew W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Suffolk
Level Contributor
15 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Last chance - never again!”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 27, 2013

We ate at this establishment a few years ago and enjoyed the concept and the fish, however the attitude of the staff left a little to be desired.

However, we opted to visit again on a Friday afternoon, arriving at two minutes past four and were told that we couldn't eat as the grills had been turned off at 4pm. I asked if we could have cold food and was told that we were too late.

Very disappointing and we will not be visiting again - although I doubt whether this will bother the owner/manager!

  • Visited April 2013
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Happyhens
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
66 reviews
46 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Not for everyone”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 27, 2013

I see some really bad reviews for this place, which is a really good thing because it is crowded enough as it is and we don't want people coming who won't appreciate it.

If you want elegant dining, highly attentive service or matching table-ware, stay away!

We come here often, but usually the waiting time is too long, so we buy some fish from the wet fish counter and have lunch somewhere else. When we do have time to wait it is always worth it.

The food is always perfectly cooked and the portion sizes are just right. Sometimes one has to share a table - we have had some really nice conversations with people we have met.

Rated poor for special occaisions because unless you are friendly with the proprietors you are unlikely to get in with a group when you want to.

Rated average for service as they really are run off their feet. It can take ages to get someone's attention just to find out the waiting time (although it is often written on a board). You can wait some time even after you get a table. The one bit of service they will get right is getting the food to you while it is hot. They are friendly and efficient. The service is just what I want, but don't expect to feel special.

Rated average for Romance since everyone is different. If your idea of romance is dinner with candle-light and violins, this is not going to work for you. If you think it is romantic to think that Mehala and Phoebe Musset fought over George De Witt here then its heaven.

  • Visited March 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
2 Thank Julian C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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