We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Very disappointing”

The Wellesley Hotel & Restaurant
Restaurant details
Reviewed July 29, 2014

This was such a disappointing evening. I had booked this for a special night to entertain family and long time "River" resident friends to thank them for sharing their home with us. The food was very disappointIng, to say the least. The crab cakes were especially horrible...a poor excuse with no crab at all. Not one person in our party was impressed.
I was very embarrassed to have chosen this restaurant . It is a beautiful spot, but the food and service does not live up. Would not ever recommend this restaurant.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
2  Thank racwlk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review
Reviews (27)
There are newer reviews for The Wellesley Hotel & Restaurant
See the most recent reviews
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language

18 - 22 of 27 reviews

Reviewed July 21, 2014

With family I’ve shared three evening meals at Thousand Island Park’s Wellesley Hotel, and we plan to return. This lovely old dining establishment, with meals served on a wide and expansive Victorian porch (most tables are well-protected from rain unless a storm features extreme wind) that looks out at the St. Lawrence River, is under new management. Two years ago the long-time and much-loved managers/chefs, who had been there for years and years, retired and last year (summer 2013) the people who took over did a really poor job.

This year, with an enthusiastic new chef and his partner wife, the Hotel’s fare is definitely heading back in the right direction, though everything isn’t perfect — yet. The servers (mostly young people who have summered for years in Thousand Island Park [TIPark] or the environs) are friendly, enthusiastic, and attentive, albeit sometimes less smooth than they could be. Yet small details mattered each evening, such as replacing forks and knives after each course, checking frequently to see if we needed anything, and describing the evening’s specials. The wine list was varied, and there was always a Proseco (my favorite dinner accompaniment).

While the entrée options are good (some just OK), I noticed that things improved markedly between my first visit in June and my second and third visits in July (as did the skill of the servers and other wait staff). I’m impressed, however, about the range of entrees and the variation on the nights when my family and friends have dined. The bread is wonderful (and the croutons made for the next day’s salad are, too). We liked the salmon, the scallops, the chicken, the Mexican fish fillet, and the pappardelle. We’ve ordered the chicken satay appetizer on each visit. The green salad that accompanies each entrée is modest and could be more varied, but the fact that the greens come from the organic farm down the road, is cool. Even when a dish was less than I expected (the risotto was not moist enough), the other food and details made up for it. I wish there was a category between average and very good — good, perhaps? — because that is what I would choose this summer.

I cannot imagine how all of the dishes ordered by a party are disappointing, but obviously that’s happened. I hope the Wellesley couple is offered the time to develop and mature at the Wellesley Hotel (this means at least another season), because it’s clear they have the ability and the vision.

Things that I’ve really liked about the Wellesley Hotel this year, in addition to dining, include a much-expanded Back-Door Bakery with a wider range of muffins, pastries, baguettes, and coffees (please don’t forget the tea and herbal tea drinkers), and the opportunity to sit in a garden surrounded by flowers and herbs after purchasing the morning repast. I’ve also enjoyed glasses of wine on another part of the expansive hotel porch on an evening when we were not dining. And I LOVE the fact that a brunch is offered on some Sundays. Oh and I appreciate the tasty the fish tacos at the Pub.

Yes, I wish Wellesley Hotel dining was a tad less expensive, but the variety of opportunities at the Hotel make it more of a gathering place than I’ve ever seen, and as these multiply and the food offerings mature, the hotel may will become more and more of a center for Thousand Island Park and St. Lawrence life.

Our family will spend at lease a couple of more evenings eating and watching things develop at the Wellesley -- with the added bonus of enjoying the spectacular view.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
2  Thank gardenlady57
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 29, 2014

New management and chef this summer and, sadly, the food was terrible. We are local and have enjoyed this restaurant in past summers when this special spot was a treat. Last night's dinner was a real disappointment. The waitress told us she hadn't waitressed in a long time, and it showed. But service isn't terribly important when the food is tasty. But it wasn't! The mushroom tartar (think dip) and shrimp spring roll appetizers (2 battered shrimp) were boring and nothing special. The ribeye
steak and duck were not prepared well. No interesting sauces and sides were mediocre. My husband loves a big dinner out and we
Really like yummy food but we left hungry! Bummer! I can't remember the last time we left less than 20% tip if ever. Last
night was a first. We'll try again if it changes hands.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
2  Thank dahlia2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 16, 2014 via mobile

Located in lovely old Victorian hotel. We were seated outside on a nice porch overlooking St.Lawrence River...beautiful view!
Food nicely prepared&well presented! Excellent service...only criticism is the portions were not generous enough...especially considering the price...was a bit spendy

2  Thank Peter G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 13, 2013 via mobile

Atmosphere is quaint; lots of old wood, big old windows opened onto the wrap-around porch. You sort of feel like you step back in time. The food is fresh and mostly tasty...but i had an interesting experience with the chicken i ordered without sauce (i requested the chantilly sauce served on the side, for diet reasons). I think the sauces are the high point of the dishes, as the chicken itself was dry and nearly inedibly dehydrated. Veggies, while fresh and well-cooked, were completely unseasoned. Wow. I guess you pay $28 for the sauce, because i wouldn't have paid $3.99 at a "joint" for what i was served. My dining companions' meals (which were swimming in sauce/gravy) were very tasty - both the sea bass and the pork. Sadly, i don't think our very sweet, sincere, but uneducated server had ever been in a nice restaurant before, as he missed most of the basics. Clear the service from unoccupied seats. Drinks go on the right. Fill the water glasses without being asked. Ladies order first. Serving from the right, clearing from the left would have been "level 2" for him, so we won't set expectations quite that high. I have been to this restaurant several times and this was the first time i had anything other than an excellent experience. Will go back...next year...maybe

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank Absynthe114
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed The Wellesley Hotel & Restaurant also viewed

 
Wellesley Island, NY
 

Been to The Wellesley Hotel & Restaurant? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing