Firstly, I should say that I hardly ever write reviews but on this occasion I felt I should. I live in Christchurch and believe that we should support the town as much as we can. I first went here about four years ago and wasn't that impressed but had heard that it had been imporoved, and that the chef from the Jetty (whoI think is excellent) was now involved in the Kings. On that basis, I suggested to my family that we go here for a birthday dinner. One of our party was surprised at my choice and questioned whether it was a good decision but I told them it would be fine.
We were a party of nine. The building is lovely and the location is also very nice. The decor is very 'boutique hotel' and it works well in my opinion. We were met, shown to our table and ordered. It was around 7pm and so not busy. After we had ordered, for some reason all of our side plates were collected. Then a basket of stale bread arrived and we had to catch the waiter to ask for some side plates to replace the ones which had been taken away. He brought back three plates for the nine of us.
The starters arrived and the food was good although the portions were small. My pidgeon breast was about three mouthfuls. Unfortunately in the last mouthful i bit into some lead shot. I mentioned this to the waitress who collected my plate and she giggled.
When the main courses arrived, two of the nine were incorrect. By the time their corrected order had arrived, three of our party had finished their main course. These two had been quite specific when they ordered because they both have a food intolerance. Incidentally, without going into details, what they had requested was an option on the menu, not a special request. One of our party asked for some mayonaise to go with his chips, which only arrived after I ventured into the kitchen looking for it.
In summary, it's a nice building in a lovely location, well decorated and with a nice menu. The portions are on the small side, but the service, is really, really bad. It wasn't busy and there were plenty of staff, but communication and management really needs to improve.
I thought long and hard about whether I should write this review. I've tried to be as fair as I can and it gives me no pleasure to write this, but I hope that by being honest with my feedback things can be improved and the Kings can become a first-class restaurant in Christchurch, which it should be.
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