We had the lunch special of two courses for £11. We came away with the impression that the Priory skimps on quality and portions as it is a set menu. My partner's starter of meatballs was luke warm, unpleasantly so. My pate was generic brussels pate, that could have been purchased at the local tesco, served with a small slice of french bread. The salad garnish on both meals was tired and wilting.
The serving staff were pleasant, but there were some odd aspects to the service. The only cutlery we were given consisted of a form and steak knife, rather odd as neither ordered steak. We'd ordered some extra french bread, but didn't receive a butter knife. When our cutlery was replaced for the second course, we received more steak knives - again neither ordered steak. Our meals were served promptly, but service was decidedly slow when we tried to pay the bill.
Our main meals were acceptable. The chips were rather odd, as the portion received seemed to cointain both fresh double fried chips and chips that had obviously been left lying around and re-fried an extra time before serving. (Having worked in restaurants, it's an old money saving trick I recognised straight away.) Both of us ordered different main meals, but both noted that the fish in our meals tasted very strongly, so may have been in less than prime condition. I have to say that most of the ingredients used in our meals seemed to be economy or past its best. We decided not to stay for dessert.
This seemed to be a restaurant that was past its prime, but with delusions that it is still a culinary force to be reckoned with. Eating here was quite a dispiriting experience, and not one I'd repeat again.
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