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“style over substance”

The Treehouse Restaurant at the Alnwick Garden
Ranked #20 of 120 Restaurants in Alnwick
Price range: $0 - $43
Cuisines: British
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Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Local cuisine, Families with children, Romantic
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, Late Night, Lunch, Delivery, Reservations
Description: The Treehouse is one of the most magical and unique restaurants to be found anywhere in the world. It’s high up in the treetops, with a roaring log fire in the centre of the room and trees growing through the floor. Most importantly, the locally-inspired food is delicious. Always featuring local fish and seafood, meats from Northumberland’s farmlands and other regional specialities, the Treehouse Restaurant menus highlight local quality, taste and change throughout the seasons. There’s a great wine list, a good range of beers and regular live music. For a family dining experience that you’ll all enjoy, a great night out with friends or a romantic dinner for two, there’s nowhere quite like it. We always recommend booking ahead for lunch or dinner.
Reviewed June 27, 2013

I am glad I visited the treehouse and would recommend that you go. Having said that, the lovely surroundings were let down by the food (I had some particularly dispiriting chick pea and carrot croquettes, although the sweet potato chips are fantastic). It is very expensive for the quality, and having to pay extra for bread seems downright mean given the prices.

Thank Parvatithecat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,485 - 1,489 of 1,901 reviews

Reviewed June 25, 2013

I booked lunch at the Treehouse as a treat for my mother, having had a memorable lunch there a couple of years ago. She came up on the train from Yorkshire just for the day. The menu has changed to a set price 2 or 3 course lunch. Choice was limited especially for an 85 year old lady with old fashioned tastes who usually opts for "safe" fish and chips. She chose the sea bream fillets but hadn't realised it was basically a salad - hence a tiny fillet of cold and oily fish sitting on a tiny mound of cold potato salad with a tin pot of what seemed to be mainly huge raw chunks of fennel - not nice - I tried it. My choice of chicken and risotto was nice but at £18 50 for 2 courses really it was very basic. Desserts were better - Mum had the cake - though she was given the outer edge and it looked quite dull really with a tiny splodge of icecream. I had the Flowerpot cheesecake and it was lovely. Dessert cheered us a little so we ordered coffee - it was served in thick rimmed glass mugs - - I have to say it was one of the worst cups of coffee I've ever had - and with milk added was the colour of weak tea - not even a mint to go with it - we really wished we had gone elsewhere for coffee. This had been a treat from me to mark my 60th birthday - what a lot of money for such a disappointing meal. Made worse when a couple of weeks later as another birthday treat with my sister nad daughter we chose the Wenslydale Heifer in West Witton. Same price but on another planet I think - the best meal I've had in years for the same price!! - Fabulous food and coffee was served in china cups - huge cafetiere and freshly made on site chocolates - wow! Alnwick Treeehouse - get your act together - quirkiness isn't enough - or really is one off visits from holiday makers the main marketing ploy rather than attracting repeat visits from local people?

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1  Thank Jan E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 23, 2013

Interesting setting and very friendly helpful staff. The food was was not good value for money. The portion sizes were small and sides of vegetables were extra. My wife had a fish main with coconut sauce, essentially a thai fish curry but with no hint that this should be accompanied by appropriate veg which were not available as sides. Also very poor options for vegetarians

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1  Thank Garrysays
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DRSNorthumberland, Manager at The Treehouse Restaurant at the Alnwick Garden, responded to this reviewResponded June 26, 2013

Hi There,

many thanks for your review - we see Tripadvisor as an excellent way to track our progress as a restaurant and to make sure we provide the best service, so feedback is always appreciated.

I am sorry to hear that you feel our portion sizes are too small; we always try to provide the best value for money that we can without compromising quality of ingredients and our ethos of using fresh, local produce wherever possible. We have many customers who are find the portion sizes perfectly adequate, but we constantly monitor the kitchen's output to make sure we are getting it right.

With regards to the choice for vegetarians, I am disappointed to hear that feel our offering is 'very poor'. At present we offer 3 vegetarian starters and 2 vegetarian main courses. Out of context this may not sound so adequate, but in actual fact we offer 6 main courses on our menu: 2 meat dishes; 2 fish dishes; 2 vegetarian dishes, which we feel is balanced well.

One of my focuses recently has been to offer good quality alternatives for vegetarians, having got to know vegetarians myself in my personal life and understood the importance of having good choices, and not just feeling like they were an 'afterthought'. As the menu is locally sourced and seasonal it is refreshed every few months, at which point we assess things like the success of accommodating dietary requirements, and we will continue to do so.

I do hope that you will visit us again, and just so that you are aware for future visits, if you tell us when you book your table that you have vegetarians (or other dietary requirements) in your party, we can prepare a special menu with more options for you.

Kindest Regards,
David Scott
Treehouse Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 22, 2013

Booked up the Treehouse for a birthday recently and overall had a good evening. The location (which is why we booked) was quite an eye-opener, the biggest and most cozy treehouse you'll come across. Very atmospheric inside (& out), lighting, bespoke timber furniture, etc and a large, obviously enclosed roaring fire. You can have drinks in the Potting Shed outside, look at menus, etc before being taken through to eat inside. All staff were very polite, friendly and professional, menu was ok, but limited and overall prices were high, with side dishes all extras (drinks also dear). Food was good, but portions on the small side - you are really paying for the location, service, etc. Definitely worth visiting either for lunch or in evening for more atmosphere.

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Thank Jerry S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 21, 2013 via mobile

I am not commenting on the food as ihave never eaten here! I did want to book a table and made a reservation on wednesday 19th via email, making sure to ask for confirmation that this was ok. By todays date i hadnt recieved anything so decided to call to confirm. A pleasant young sounding member of staff told-me that nobody would have contacted me if they are fully booked! What if i had travelled a distance expecting the booking to have been taken only to be told that it hadnt and that they had no other tables. . I would have appreciated an email to confirm not being able to have a table, but not even that. Unfortunately now i wont be going to this venue for any reason as im sure they will be fully booked. Very poor organisation and customer service and im sure the rest of the experience would have lived up to the expectations!!

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1  Thank Redchef1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DRSNorthumberland, General Manager at The Treehouse Restaurant at the Alnwick Garden, responded to this reviewResponded June 24, 2013

Hi There,

Firstly I would like to question as to why you have chosen to rate 'Food' as 1 star (you can specifically rate food, service, value for money etc.- you have only rated food out of these options), when you explicitly explain in the body of your review that you have never eaten at The Treehouse.

I am sorry to hear that you were not able to dine with us; we have checked all of our incoming and outgoing emails from Wednesday 19th June (including the 'Junk' mail folder, should it have inadvertently found its way there) and we cannot find any email that was not responded to, so I am confused as to what exactly has happened in your case.

Unfortunately the information you may have been given on the telephone was incorrect - we always try our hardest to respond to every single email/communication from our customers - not to reply when we are fully booked with alternatives is to miss out on diners and happy customers so we always do our utmost to reply to every query.

If you would care to contact me personally with details of your email correspondence, I would like to investigate things further. Unfortunately management response guidelines state that I am not allowed to disclose any contact details or web links in this response, but if you visit the Treehouse's profile page on Tripadvisor, the contact details are listed there.

I do hope that despite what you have said in your review that you would consider dining with us in the future - I really feel that your experience is an anomaly amongst an excellent service that we provide to our customers.

Kindest Regards,

David Scott
Treehouse Manager

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

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