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“Lunch in the sun”
4 of 5 bubbles Review of The Cellar Door

The Cellar Door
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Ranked #20 of 304 Restaurants in Durham
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $13 - $45
Cuisines: European, Contemporary, British
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Special occasions, Large groups, Local cuisine, Business meetings, Families with children, Scenic view
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Brunch, Lunch, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Wifi, Full Bar, Highchairs Available, Outdoor Seating, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Description: Passion. It is quite often impossible to summarise the experience created within a restaurant with just one word. Passion. Passion to produce the best food possible with the freshest and finest ingredients we can scour the world to find. Passion to strive to be the best. Passion to ensure that our customers remember. Passion to cater for people from all walks of life and give them a lasting memory of our restaurant. We're not going to tell you about how we have stunning river views with outdoor dining set in a 13th Century cellar conversion. We're not going to bore you with how difficult we are to find. We want you to come here, seek us out, walk down those narrow steps, be surprised by what lies beneath and leave wishing you had found us sooner. We're not perfect, we're not the best in the world, but we strive to be the best we can and evolve every day, so come join us on our journey.
Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
14 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Lunch in the sun”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 6, 2013

Visited this restaurant today with my wife whilst on a day out in Durham. It was lovely sunny day and at the time of visiting the restaurant, shortly after 1 o'clock, it was fairly busy with other diners.

We were asked at the bar if we would prefer to be sat inside or outside, we said we had no preference and were shown to a table outside which was lovely. We were sat at the top of the outside terrace looking over the terrace and having a nice view of the river. As well as the usual menu and lunchtime offers, they had a gourmet barbecue special which both I and my wife had.

The dish was priced at £12.95 and came with marinated rump steak, peri peri chicken and a lamb kofta pattie. The dish came with assorted summer salads and fresh sauces. Although not cheap i have to say the dish was really good value for money with the meats cooked perfectly and the salads, dressings and sauces tasting exquisite. I was very impressed with this dish. The chef on the barbecue, who was the owner of the restaurant, came to our table and told us that he was starting our dish which I thought was good.

The only negative about the restaurant is the service. We waited a bit before our drinks came, in fact our drinks arrived the same time as our meal. Once we finished our meal we seemed to be forgot about and just sat. The owner/ chef did come over and we had a nice chat, this was whilst we waited for our bill after asking a waitress for it. I did compliment him on the food whilst we chatted. After he left us we still had a wait for the bill and had to remind the waitress again. On her way back through we said to her we would follow her out to pay our bill at the bar just in case she forgot us again......

This is a nice restaurant and on judging by the food I had, I will return, recommend and hope it continues in business. The only niggle is the service, get that right and it will be perfect.

  • Visited May 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank porkchop843
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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701 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
88 reviews
57 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Very disappointing”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 4, 2013 via mobile

It's our 10th wedding anniversary and from looking at the menu and the setting we thought this would be the perfect place to celebrate....how wrong we were.
The restaurant was busy but the seats and tables were so close to each other and we had a couple of loud tables next to us we couldn't hear each other and I was constantly being knocked as the waiting team walked behind me in the narrow gap. The scallop starter was delicious although with only 2 scallops not exactly value for money. We waited some time for the main course to arrive and when it did again was a real let down. The champ potatoes, spring greens and sauce were cold, the tenderloin was tough and tiny and the only saving grace was the small piece of belly pork, hot and tender. Even the crackling was stone cold and bland. We didn't risk further disappointment by ordering dessert.
We were asked if everything was ok and explained that the meal had been cold but were barely offered an apology and the waitress still kept asking right up until we left. Would certainly not recommend and in a city full of great looking eateries I can't see this surviving.

Visited May 2013
Thank KTravers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newton Aycliffe, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
47 reviews
31 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 22, 2013

We were looking for an early weekday lunch and chose this restaurant as we hadn't been before and it looked interesting and cosy. Inside the restaurant was very quiet with only two other diners. We were shown to a table with a great river view. The terrace outside looked fantastic for drinks on a summer evening. We just ordered main courses as we didn't have a lot of time. Our drinks arrived promptly. Unfortunately we then waited forty minutes for our food to arrive. During that time we were not offered any bread or nibbles to pass the time and our glasses were empty long before the food arrived. We were never asked if we wanted more drinks. In fact the waitress stayed away, presumably embarrassed by our lengthy wait. The fish pie was the best of the four dishes, being generous and tasty. The salad garnish was good. The chicken Caesar salad was, in our opinion, overpriced and the chicken was dry and leathery as though it had been left on the pass while the other mains were cooking. The other chicken dish was also dry and again expensive considering the quality and amount. The risotto rice was undercooked in parts and unpleasantly chewy. The waitress did not seem surprised at our lack of enthusiasm, nor that we asked for the bill straightaway as she came to clear the plates. As we left she didnt appear in person but called goodbye from her hiding place in the bar area. There were no other diners by this time. This restaurant may well offer an altogether different experience in the evening with more staff in the kitchen and more diners to give a cosier, more convivial atmosphere. However, we are not tempted to revisit from our lunchtime experience.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Jennifer B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gateshead-on-Tyne, null, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
17 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 22, 2013

We visited the cellar door today, and although there was only one table of 2 people in we waited well over 40 minutes for our food!

There was 4 of us on our table and we had only ordered mains as we were in a bit of a hurry, the other table of 2 had both their starters and mains before we even saw light of our meals! We were told our food would be 2 minutes as they were just being plated up. We waited a further 5/10 minutes until our food finally arrived!!

Upon arriving the food looked unappetising and rather small for the prices! I had risotto and it was barely cooked, it was chewy and hard. Other people on the table had chicken, which was hard and well overcooked!

When the waitress came over to do the check back she asked if everything was ok, we didn't really want to respond at all! But didn't kick up a fuss as we had to go. For the whole duration of the visit we were never once offered another drink, we ALL had empty glasses and when we looked for the waitress she was nowhere to be seen.

We left swiftly after that! It is safe to say we will not be eating here again.

Overall awful food - awful atmosphere and awful service!!!

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
2 Thank Liam B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hartlepool, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
50 reviews
27 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
“All good”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 20, 2013

We were in Durham on a lovely sunny spring day and called into the Cellar Door for lunch . Wonderful views across the river with a choice to dine inside or out .We chose indoors and there was a lovely ambience about the place . Service was top notch and we had an excellent 3 course meal with drinks for just over £60 . We'll certainly be calling in again when next in Durham .

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank McPoolie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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