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“Chatham Bars Inn: Forget the Clambake and Front Porch Dining”

Chatham Bars Inn Resort - Dining
Ranked #13 of 69 Restaurants in Chatham
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $31 - $50
Cuisines: American, Seafood
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Lunch, Late Night, Dinner, Reservations
Dining style: Fine Dining
Cross street: Seaview Street and Shore Road
Description: New England dining meets premier restaurant at STARS, located in the Historic Chatham Bars Inn. Custom chandeliers, stately columns and magnificent picture windows overlooking the Atlantic Ocean’s Pleasant Bay create an ambiance that's both upscale and inviting. Nothing but the finest mid-western grain fed and dry aged beef is served with extraordinary local ingredients and produce from our own farm, Cape Cod’s finest local seafood and an extensive list of wines representing the world’s greatest wine making regions . Our signature tableside steak sizing, cut to your specifications along with house specialties such as the “BACON & EGGS” pork belly appetizer, 22 ounce Dry Aged Porter House and open Wine Cellar are a few distinctive dining highlights. Please observe our dress code, Resort Evening Attire. For the ladies, resort casual including jeans - no pool / beach attire and for the men, long pants including jeans, collared shirt and proper footwear - no shorts.
Reviewed July 9, 2013

Knowing the outstanding reputation of Chatham Bars Inn, I decided to take my 4th of July weekend houseguests to the beachside clambake for dinner. It was a bad experience: poor service, cold food, sand in the clams, overcooked lobster, and a buffet that ran out of clam chowder (at a clambake). After waiting for more than 10 minutes, I gave up on the chowder, as it still had not been replenished. And, we were forced to eat at a picnic table that was dirty, had benches that were 8 inches from the sand and wouldn't move. Not what I would expect for $70 per person!! You can find much better clambakes at the Cape. Forget this one!! Still not giving up, we went to lunch one day at the front porch dining area of the Inn. This time, it took more than one hour to get simple appetizers (which had to be sent back to the kitchen because they weren't done correctly), and an additional 30 minutes to get entrees (which weren't that good), Forget this one too. Cape Cod has wonderful restaurants. Save your money and try some others.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank MDCruiseFan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
resortmanagercbi, Manager at Chatham Bars Inn Resort - Dining, responded to this reviewResponded July 10, 2013

Thank you for taking time to carefully outline both of your recent dining experiences while visiting Chatham Bars Inn Resort and Spa. I received your review on Trip Advisor today and wanted to immediately say how very sorry I am for the regrettable service shortcomings that diminished the quality of your dining experiences while visiting us last week.

From start to finish in all aspects of your frustrations, we clearly fell short of both your and my expectations. Due in part to this year’s Fourth of July holiday falling on a Thursday, we, as did the Cape in general experience a far higher volume of customers over course of a 5 day period. We are fully equipped for handling a large volume of restaurant patrons on a daily basis during the peak season; however this year’s performance coupled with a few untimely computer system glitches, it left us with many opportunities for improvement. I would also like to apologize for the manner in which your concerns were handled by members of our team. Your comments will be discussed with the appropriate parties here so that we can focus on improved communication, food quality and its presentation, and in most importantly, our courtesies and manners. Our guests’ satisfaction is paramount to our success and if we did not succeed in this effort, we want to make sure every effort is made to prevent situations such as your experience from happening again.

A poor first impression is always difficult to reverse, but I know that we can do better and I am hopeful that we may have a chance to welcome you back sometime down the road and provide you with a dining experience that will be enjoyable and flawless in every area of our hospitality, for which we are more customary known for.

Again, thank you for your candid review and please don’t hesitate contacting directly if you wish to speak one on one regarding your experience. My direct line is 508.945.6710, or my email of mbriggs@chathambarsinn.com.

Michael Briggs
Resort Manager
Chatham Bars Inn Resort and Spa

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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371 - 375 of 562 reviews

Reviewed July 9, 2013

We recently celebrated my parents 50th wedding anniversary at CBI. I reviewed my experience with the resort separately, but our dinner at Stars with Orlando needs its own review.

We had the private Captains Room, which was lovely and perfect for our group of eight. Views were incredible, the kids could get up and walk around without disturbing other diners, and Orlando was our dedicated server.

Orlando is one of the servers at Stars. Do whatever you need to do to request that he be your server. Seriously - if CBI could train their other employees to approach service, class, and excellence the way Orlando does, it would transform the CBI guest experience.

He made A+ recommendations on food and wine. He shared with us some local history and stories, without becoming the center of the room (we all know what that's like). He had a genuinely kind, warm, professional manner.

The food was outstanding, and Orlando was attentive without being overbearing. We had also special ordered a cake for the night, and believe me when I tell you, this chocolate cake was one of the best I have ever tasted. And beautiful!

The entire evening was very special, and the Stars staff were exemplary. Thank you!

The following night, we sent my 13yo nephew on a mission to find tonic water, and he inadvertently ran into Orlando who vanished, and then reappeared with a carafe full. Just outstanding. My nephew felt like the most special guest at CBI.

Thank Eileen S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 9, 2013

Stars Restaurant was absolutely beautiful from the chandeliers to the fireplace and huge picture windows. Unfortunately the latter were impossible to see out of because condensation or some other type of filmy substance made them opaque on this very clear evening.

The food unfortunately was disappointing. We started with lobster bisque which was fine and a tomato and burata salad. Also just fine. The sea scallops I ordered upon recommendation of the server were not fresh. In fact I stopped eating after the first one because I feared spending the rest of my vacation feeling ill. My husband ordered the swordfish which was just ok. A note about the server. We waited a very long time for our order to be taken. We were repeatedly asked if we wanted wine, drinks, desserts, coffee etc., but when he removed my still full plate, the server did not ask if there was a problem.

Maybe you will have better luck if you order steak. In any case it is a beautiful setting and won visiting for that alone. All of the staff aside from our server were lovely. The server was fine, not rude, but more of a salesman with a slightly superior attitude than a professional seeking to help create a memorable dining experience.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank 384Lisa_C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
resortmanagercbi, Manager at Chatham Bars Inn Resort - Dining, responded to this reviewResponded July 10, 2013

Thank you for your review of STARS, our resort’s premier restaurant on Trip Advisor.com. I am sorry to learn that your overall dining experience was just OK, not outstanding. Where dry aged beef and chops are part of our menu’s main focus, fresh seafood is also balanced in nicely so that there is something for everyone to choose from. I will discuss your constructive feedback regarding food quality with our Executive Chef, in addition working with our STARS Manager to focus some service opportunities we may have with our dining room staff.

We appreciate your candid feedback and hope that you will give STARS another try in the future. Please don’t hesitate contacting my office directly if I can be of any assistance in making your dining reservations for you. My office telephone number is 508.945.6710, my email is mbriggs@chathambarsinn.com. I know that we can do far better on all levels for your next visit.

Michael Briggs
Resort Manager
Chatham Bars Inn Resort and Spa

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 8, 2013

Great for drinks after the beach. Drinks are very good, the Vodka Rasberry Lemonades are a must try. It is CBI though so dont forget the check book, not cheap.

We did not eat here as I was not ready to give up my first born!

OH ya, they had an singer outside which was nice if you could hear him they must make them keep it low.
It is a nice place though, if money is no object....its a very nice place

    • Value
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Thank Scott237
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 7, 2013

I returned for a summer visit to Chatham after 14 years and eagerly looked forward to dining at the Chatham Bars Inn restaurants as I had fond memories of fabulous dining experiences. We made reservations for the summer Clam Bake one evening as well as a luncheon reservation on the Terrace for later the same week. There is no other way to describe both dining experiences as anything, but horrible. Disorganization, poor service, inferior food, and a clear attitude of not giving a darn characterized both meals. At the lobster bake, we checked in about 5 minutes prior to our reservation and was asked to wait for a few minutes to be seated (no problem). Five minutes later, we were asked to get back in line (this time the line was quite a bit longer) to check in again for reasons that were not explained. We waited in line for the second time for about 15 minutes, at which time we were taken to a table that had no plates or silverware. It was a picnic table in the sand - one of three - where most of the diners were seated on the terrace. About 5 minutes later, we were told that we were not at a table where there was service and they moved us to another picnic table. We had not requested to be at a picnic table - and I went to discuss the issue with the manager at the hostess stand. He insisted we had requested the picnic table in the sand and that was our only option if we wanted to eat. I repeated that we had not made such a request, but obviously they were not willing to make a change (note the table next to us - also a picnic table in the sand were also told they requested it and they were also adamant that they did not). The picnic tables were very low and it was very difficult to get up and down from them, walk through the sand, up a flight of stairs and into the dining area where the buffet was located. We ordered drinks and waited and waited and waited. Finally, they arrived and we made our way to the buffet. It was very poorly designed - people get bumping into each other; the food was not labeled so there was no idea what you were eating; there was very limited personnel to explain what was in the food; and much of the food had already run out and the staff were very slow in replenishing). The quality of the food was very poor (i.e., the clams were full of sand; freshness was an issue for the raw bar items and the lobsters were overcooked and chewy). We were left with the impression that although a great idea - that there were many logistics to work out to get it to where it would be a quality dining experience.

The experience with the clam bake did not deter our desire to try again - this time for a casual lunch on the Terrace. We arrived at 11:30 and placed our order by 11:40. And then, we waited and waited and waited. We had ordered 2 appetizers - fried calamari and deviled eggs. At 12:40, they arrived. The calamari had been obviously sitting on a kitchen counter for some time - it was stone cold and tasted very fishy. The deviled eggs were warm. The waitress was aware of the issue and she removed the calamari - for a reorder - but we emphasized that we did not want anything to hold up the main dishes. We waited. Finally at 1:00 PM our main dishes arrived. We noted that there were maybe 12 tables on the terrace and at least half of them were suffering from similar fates as ours - with over one hour waits for food. When we did finally receive our food, it was terrible. The lobster rolls were very warm - as if they had been sitting around - and did not taste fresh; the one sandwich did not come with the correct side order; and the second sandwich had only one slice of meat which had been badly burned - overall it was inedible. The server asked if we would like to talk to the manager - - we waited for about 20 minutes for the manager where he noted our comments (we suggested that there was a problem in the kitchen) and our concern about the freshness of the food. He told us that there was no problem with the food and left. There was no attempt to apologize, make amends, or suggest that the issues were unusual. We ended our meal and used the restrooms prior to leaving. They were both (men and women) both dirty, with tp on the floor and overflowing trash bins. We would have expected something a bit better from such a great establishment.

The other dining experiences during our week in Chatham were fabulous, so we were extra disappointed that the once great and beautiful CBI known for such exception service has fallen down to reflect such poor standards and management.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
3  Thank Cd133
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
resortmanagercbi, Manager at Chatham Bars Inn Resort - Dining, responded to this reviewResponded July 9, 2013

Thank you for taking time to carefully outline both of your recent dining experiences while visiting Chatham Bars Inn Resort and Spa. I received your review on Trip Advisor today and wanted to immediately say how very sorry I am for the regrettable service shortcomings that diminished the quality of your dining experiences while visiting us last week.

From start to finish in all aspects of your frustrations, we clearly fell short of both your and my expectations. Due in part to this year’s Fourth of July holiday falling on a Thursday, we, as did the Cape in general experience a far higher volume of customers over course of a 5 day period. We are fully equipped for handling a large volume of restaurant patrons on a daily basis during the peak season; however this year’s performance coupled with a few untimely computer system glitches, it left us with many opportunities for improvement. I would also like to apologize for the manner in which your concerns were handled by members of our team. Your comments will be discussed with the appropriate parties here so that we can focus on improved communication, food quality and its presentation, and in most importantly, our courtesies and manners. Our guests’ satisfaction is paramount to our success and if we did not succeed in this effort, we want to make sure every effort is made to prevent situations such as your experience from happening again.

A poor first impression is always difficult to reverse, but I know that we can do better and I am hopeful that we may have a chance to welcome you back sometime down the road and provide you with a dining experience that will be enjoyable and flawless in every area of our hospitality, for which we are more customary known for.

Again, thank you for your candid review and please don’t hesitate contacting directly if you wish to speak one on one regarding your experience. My direct line is 508.945.6710, or my email of mbriggs@chathambarsinn.com.

Michael Briggs
Resort Manager
Chatham Bars Inn Resort and Spa

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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