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Inn at Pleasant Lake
Ranked #1 of 6 New London B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed May 27, 2014

I am reviewing the dining function of this amazing locale, as we did not stay here but were treated to one of the best two or three dining experiences ever. We had received a gift certificate to the Inn as a wedding present, and we decided it was time to enjoy the epicurean creme de la creme in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire.

First of all to consider. You don't make a reservation here to eat and run. Plan at least for a five hour culinary experience. Prior to arrival or during the reservation procedure, dinner guests are queried as to dietary intolerances and restrictions to ensure a flawless experience. Guests are encouraged to arrive at around 6 PM, get a drink at the bar, and engage in placid conversation with the other cosmopolitan dinner guests and suite guests having dinner at any of the two expansive outside patios overlooking the spectacular lakeside scenery, or if during inclement weather, in the several parlors on the lower floor. During that time, one of the Maitre D's will discretely approach the guests, menus in hand, and seek their preferences for wines and the several entrees available. At around 7 PM, the Executive Chef softly rings the dinner bells and summons the guests to the hearth room for a 15-minute briefing on the delicacies to be enjoyed. Each course is described as to its origin, savoring, spices, and presentation. Guests are then ushered by parties to their appointed seats.

We began our faire with Mini pikelets with smoked salmon to cleanse the palate before the amazing Lobster Bisque landed on our table. This was thick, reduced bisque sporting the chunks of superbly tasting lobster tail pieces. I tasted a little as I am lactose intolerant and the Inn made a point of cooking a fresh Tomato Bisque for me. A few minutes later the house salad came, seasoned with pistachios, walnuts and a finger-licking balsamic dressing. Home baked bread was abundantly available throughout.

Next, a little cup of sorbet was served to cleanse the palate again prior to the piece de resistance, which for both of us was a delightful tenderloin served with risotto. The meat did not need a knife to be cut it was so tender. One of the best pieces of meat ever.

We washed our dinner with a top of the line Rioja wine that paired well with all the other courses.

Dessert was a house made Crème brûlée and a tasty espresso.

Between the service, the conversation, and the spectacular scenery, we ended up leaving at 11 PM.... What a wonderful evening!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Stayed: May 2014, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Cubanissimo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
853Chef, Owner at Inn at Pleasant Lake, responded to this reviewResponded June 4, 2014

Thank you so very much for your wonderful review. We love travelers and diners from varying travel and dining backgrounds. For the restaurant, I love to have guests that get into the whole experience from cocktails to coffee. We want the atmosphere to relaxing and for our guests to have no pressure. People have enough pressure when out in the world. The inn is a place to be pampered both as a dinner guest as well as an inn guest. I love flavor blending, garnishes and textures that make the courses unique. We want all of our guest to leave each time having great memories of their dining experience or their overnight stays. Thanks again, Brian

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142 - 148 of 209 reviews

Reviewed May 9, 2014

I stayed at the Inn the first weekend in May. It was warm and welcoming. The room was lovely, comfortable, and decor was simple but inviting. I stayed in Room 5 which had a queen bed and a separate seating area that could be closed off from the bedroom. Although I came here on a girls fishing weekend, the visit quickly expanded to include a culinary delight. Chef Brian MacKenzie is an amazing and accomplished chef/host. Yes, Mr. MacKenzie wears multiple hats, and his engaging smile and demeanor makes you feel welcomed and at home. I loved his evening "presentation" before dinner during which he welcomes his guests and explains the entire dining experience you are soon to enjoy. What a relaxing and somewhat decadent experience. Can't wait to visit again! Highly recommend it. P.S. We didn't catch any fish, but did enjoy paddling around on lovely Pleasant Lake located right across the street from the Inn.

Room Tip: Rooms closer to the staircase are quietest.
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  • Stayed: May 2014, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Denise S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
853Chef, Owner at Inn at Pleasant Lake, responded to this reviewResponded June 5, 2014

I loved to see you two here for the fishing weekend. Sorry you didn't catch any fish. I am glad you two were able to experience the inn during our transition to summer season. This time of year can be the most relaxing as you don't have to deal with many people, except for me and the staff. We truly love our lives as innkeepers and cooks. When people leave the inn happy and excited to return, we feel that we have helped our guests experience what we feel is so special about this area as well as the inn, itself. This place has been entertaining people since 1868 and I believe has a lot more entertaining left to do. Thanks again for your visit. Next time there may be a fish for you. Sincerely, Brian MacKenzie Chef / Owner

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Reviewed January 26, 2014

Have stayed here on several occasions. My absolute favorite inn. I always feel as if I'm coming "home" when I stay here. The staff are so gracious and helpful without be over bearing. Views of Pleasant Lake and Mt. Kearsarge are visible from most rooms as well as the 4 season porch and the patio. Breakfast is always a delight and you must try one of Brian's amazing dinners at least once in your lifetime - one of the most extraordinary dining experiences I've ever had. The Inn is a relaxing bit of heaven that's a quick drive to downtown New London or Mt Sunapee.
Perfect for a romantic retreat or girls weekend.

Stayed: November 2013
Thank Kati M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
853Chef, Owner at Inn at Pleasant Lake, responded to this reviewResponded June 5, 2014

The home feel is the emotion we want people to feel. Home as in, I feel very comfortable there. Of course there is the other HOME feel: laundry, dishes, yard work, bills, kids, clutter, dust, paperwork, cleaning and more cleaning. We like to do that stuff for you. Our home feel likes to remove you from all those thoughts and move you to reading a book, doing a puzzle, going out for a paddle, sitting on the beach or napping on a chaise lounge listening to music, having a cocktail on an gliding chair looking at the lake. Anyways, thank you for your review. We hope to see you again soon. September is incredible. Sincerely, Brian MacKenzie Chef / Owner

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Reviewed January 2, 2014

Spent one night at the inn during the week after Christmas. We stayed in room #12 which is a Jr suite. The room was nice - a King size bed would have been better, but we knew that wasn't going to be the case going into it. The room has a small two person couch and coffee table for relaxing. Bathroom was nice but the shower head was way too low - I'm not even 6 feet tall and it wasn't a great showering experience. We were there just to relax and didn't do any skiing or outdoor activities so I can't comment on that. Seems like there are plenty of options though.

We did have dinner at the restaurant which was good, but I did not find it to be as amazing as some of the other reviews. I have no real complaints, but I would not compare it to higher-end restaurants in urban locations. For what it was, it may have been slightly overpriced, but still good. And I'm sure much better any dining options anywhere near the inn. The potato soup was excellent (and that dish actually was comparable to high-end restaurants).

We did have lunch at the Flying Goose pub nearby which was a great brew pub with good feed and craft beers.

Overall I think this is a very nice option for a getaway that is not too far from the greater Boston area. I would return.

  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank MellanzaneMadman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
853Chef, Owner at Inn at Pleasant Lake, responded to this reviewResponded August 12, 2014

Thank you for taking time to write your review. Feedback such as yours is great for us to get the perspective of the guest staying in our rooms. As far as dinner, I thank you for your insight. I tend to be a humble chef with many hats. Your comments, although not specific, help me to refocus and consider the needs of our target market and challenge me as a chef to get to the next level of the high end city restaurant. During the winter months, I always dream of the great summer vegetable bounty available from our local farm. These summer vegetables always liven up the flavors and offer many additional garnishes. Thank you again for your comments. Sincerely, Brian MacKenzie Chef / Owner

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Reviewed November 10, 2013

Sadly we visited on a Monday when the much praised restaurant closes. But nonetheless we had a very enjoyable visit. It was a sunny late May afternoon and we went for a row in the Inn's boat on the aptly named lake surrounded by silence, trees and hills. The building, the setting, the rooms and the beautiful furnishings combine to give a an experience of luxurious seclusion.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Andy N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 4, 2013

My daughter, daughter-in-law and I stayed one night at the inn and loved the ambience. They had a fire in the fireplace and a cozy sitting room with a tv and computer. Chef Brian MacKenzie prepared a prix fix meal which was to die for! If you are in the area you should definitely make a reservation for dinner and experience one of the best meals you will ever eat. That night we had lobster bisque which was the best I've ever eaten and beef tenderloin which melted in your mouth like butter! As he told us before the meal, "there are no steak knives on my tables". We had a suite with one bed and a pull out sofa which was adequate for the night. My regret is that we didn't have time to explore the trails and property while we were there.

  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank dlwman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 21, 2013

Last minute research revealed this place and we were lucky that they had an open table for dinner. The meal was elegant, the chef entertaining, and we enjoyed a glorious, delicate, many course meal. Great hiking from the premises whether you want a long one over the network of well signposted trials or a short walk. Great kayaking with the Inn's boats around the lake. Many restaurant options are a short drive away.

Room Tip: Lake side has great views
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  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank kropper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Inn at Pleasant Lake

Address: 853 Pleasant St, PO Box 1030, New London, NH 03257-5582
Phone Number:
Location: United States > New Hampshire > New London
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 6 B&Bs / Inns in New London
Price Range: $162 - $255 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Inn at Pleasant Lake 3.5*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Inn at Pleasant Lake is a historic ten room country inn overlooking Pleasant Lake and Mount Kearsarge in New London, NH. Guests of the inn enjoy afternoon tea and a full breakfast included with their stay. A five course prix fixe dinner is available Wednesday-Sunday by reservation at our restaurant led by Executive Chef Bryan Leary. Gourmet Brunch is available Sundays at 11:30. Seasonal To Go Lunch Menu available to guests. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Inn At Pleasant Lake Hotel New London

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