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“Wow, food, ambience and friendly”

The Duncombe Arms Pub
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Ranked #4 of 94 Restaurants in Ashbourne
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $9 - $39
Cuisines: British
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Late Night, Delivery, Reservations
Description: The Duncombe Arms Pub is a delightful setting in which to enjoy a drink, some lovely food and a chat. You’ll have the ambience of a roaring log fire and enjoy choosing from a great range of beers, a varied and interesting selection of wines and all your favourite soft drinks. Our great food is freshly prepared and we offer traditional favourites with a few exciting specialties of our own – all at affordable prices.
Midlands
Level 5 Contributor
66 reviews
38 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“Wow, food, ambience and friendly”
Reviewed July 20, 2013 via mobile

I highly recommend this pub, REALLY tasty food, friendly and professional bar and waiting on staff. We went for lunch, the menu offering a wide range of options plus a varied specials board. The pub is welcoming and is decorated and dressed with quirky and fun items. Extensive wine list and good beer. It is very, very clean, polished glasses and simple table decoration, adorned with lovely fresh flowers. Hard working staff to keep up those standards. The quality is severel notches above the average pub. I do have a criticism - uplifting music is piped throughout the interior, chirpy staff are supportive but not intrusive BUT someone YAWPS " SERVICE" ( we can only presume it is the chef) lowering the tone of the whole establishment. I am not keen on those wireless door bells which are sometimes used elsewhere but, even one of those would be an improvement on the YELLING from the kitchen. Maybe customers just avoid the sweet little snug to the left of the entrance.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank BongoElsbeth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jgreenall, Owner at The Duncombe Arms Pub, responded to this review, August 20, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to review The Duncombe Arms on Tripadvisor. We are delighted you enjoyed your lunch, the interior of the pub and that the staff looked after you. We love our main suppliers of wine and beer, Julian Macdonald of Bibendum Wine and Bob Leatherland from Marstons who make sure we have what the customers want. I have taken note of your comments regarding the music and the yawping. We try to make both subtle and will try harder. Thanks again and we look forward to seeing you in the near future.
Best wishes
Johnny Greenall
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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749 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    510
    136
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    20
    17
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Camberley, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
41 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Nice Country Pub”
Reviewed July 20, 2013

I visited The Duncombe Arm safter spending the day at Alton Towers and it was agood way to recharge the batteries with some lovely food. Although I enjoyed my main & dessert I felt that the portion sizes were a bit small for the price paid. My partner had the Grilled Turbot with mash and it was a nice main, however it was rather small but decorated on the plate. The pub had a nice country feel to it and the staff were all friendly and accommodating, it was just a tad expensive for what essentially was pub grub.

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Ally N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jgreenall, Owner at The Duncombe Arms Pub, responded to this review, August 20, 2013
Thank you so much for visiting The Duncombe Arms and taking the time to write a review on Tripadvisor. I have made a note of your comment on portion sizes and as normal practice this will be reviewed at our next management meeting. We take great care to source fresh ingredients and whenever possible use local suppliers which makes dishes expensive but we feel our menu offers value. In relation to our prices we have a great staff who I'm glad you found friendly and the team in the kitchen who go the extra mile in creativity to produce pub grub with a distinct difference.
Once again thanks for the review.
Best wishes
Johnny Greenall
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Warrington, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Unbeatable - go out of your way and don't miss out!!”
Reviewed July 19, 2013

After a day nearby at Alton Towers, we had been impressed by other reviews on here and came to try ourselves, and wow! The venue itself was perfect, with outdoor facilities with sweeping views across beautiful countryside, but we decided to stay indoors which is beautifully put together, very tasteful and classy, with a real ambience. We were also fortunate to meet the owners Johnny and Laura who were very hospitable, and clearly have a passion for this place, and the service from the rest of the staff was attentive without being obtrusive, a real skill. In terms of the food, it was an absolute delight. We started with the black pudding and ham hock terrine, both of which were faultless. For mains I tried the Trout special, locally caught that day, and was perfect. But, the fish and chips.... Now we eat out a great deal, and we've had plenty of fish and chips in our time but I can honestly say this was unbeatable. The fish was cooked to perfection, and you can't always say that where batter is concerned, but it truly was. The homecooked chips were perfectly seasoned, and even the peas, yes I'm talking about peas, were prepared in the most fantastic way. My other half was gushing - this meal is worth any travel you do to get here alone! Whilst already full, we managed to find a desert stomach to enjoy sticky toffee pudding with home made ice cream and the chocolate tart. This place is a real gem. I just wish we didn't live 60 miles away to enjoy it more frequently, but we will be back, and the drive will be worth it! Don't miss out, and if you're on a day out to Alton Towers, this place is too close and too good not to make part of your excursion.

  • Visited June 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Casey1970
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jgreenall, Owner at The Duncombe Arms Pub, responded to this review, July 20, 2013
Dear Casey
Thanks for the really comprehensive review which underlines what the Duncombe Arms is all about, ambiance , great food and great service. The descriptions of your dinner really sells the pub and when I read your review I started to feel hungry! We are delighted you enjoyed your experience at The Duncombe,Rob and his front of house team, and Matt and his kitchen team will be delighted with this review and it will inspire us all to make The Duncombe the pub with the twist of something special reach new heights. Many thanks for taking the time to review our pub.
Best wishes
Johnny Greenall
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Skipton
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“What a shame this pub isn´t on our doorstep”
Reviewed July 10, 2013

Stayed with friends in Ashbourne who raved about The Duncombe Arms and we can understand why. FINALLY - a pub that skilfully combines friendly, attentive service, good beer and a fabulous wine menu with the most outstanding food. The atmosphere is warm and welcoming, and despite the pub being very busy (Saturday night) this did not affect the quality of the food, or the level of service offered. Our only criticism is that it´s not closer to home!!!

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank SallySkipton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jgreenall, Owner at The Duncombe Arms Pub, responded to this review, July 19, 2013
Dear Sally
We wished we were your local! We loved your review which has given a lift to the team as only compliments do. Please come and see us soon and try some of Matt's new specials.
Best wishes
Johnny Greenall
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Derbyshire. uk
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
29 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“much improved since our last visit”
Reviewed July 8, 2013

Visited for Sunday lunch, with family. Greeting by staff very jolly, sat outside in the sun. Mentioned the disastrous Sunday lunch we had last time ( about 9months ago) and waiter agreed he had heard similar moans. Todays Sunday lunch was good value and very good food, though we did have to ask for extra Veg and and an extra slice of beef would have been nice (only one slice served). All in all a vast improvement and we will be back to try again.
Wines a little bit pricey but have to say, waiting on staff very jolly.
Well done, whoever is responsible for the overall improvement in food.

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank limosteers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jgreenall, Owner at The Duncombe Arms Pub, responded to this review, July 19, 2013
Thank you for writing a review of The Duncombe Arms and we are delighted that you had a much better time with us than previously. Matt our head chef is really pleased you liked the food and he has some delicious specials which we were trying last night about to go on the menu so please come and see us again. The remainder of your comments have been noted and we will use these to improve the product and service. Thanks again for visiting.
Best wishes
Johnny Greenall
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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