The Beach House Westover Pub Restaurant
Park Lane, Milford-on-Sea
Tel: 01590 643044
Gluten free: Just ask
Parking: Own car park
I’d been looking forward to trying the Beach House ever since it opened in 2012. It is a gorgeous Grade 11 listed manor house that was previously Westover Hall Hotel. Personally I think that as it is such an impressive building it deserves a more prestigious name than one that conjures up visions of a beach hut.
This week my OH (other half) and I met up with friends at this lovely venue. We had drinks in the lounge whilst studying the menu. It soon dawned on us that we didn’t want to take our coats off, it felt just as cold inside as it did out and it was a very cold day! Such a shame the fire wasn’t lit, it would have been so warm and welcoming.
There are several different wood panelled dining areas and in the summer it must be wonderful to use the terrace or garden which has fabulous sea views to the Isle of Wight. My friends had booked a table with a view by a window but this room was even colder! The staff insisted the heating was on as high as possible so why were all the radiators freezing? We pointed out that everyone in the dining room had their coats on so it wasn’t just us. They did apologise and told us that the 2 bottles of wine we had just ordered would be complimentary. Very kind of them but we would far rather have been warm and relaxed! It then took ages for the drinks to arrive and AGES until anyone came to take our food order. Two of us ordered the Fish Pie, it sounded so good but after a while we were told they had none left. At least the South African Chenin Blanc I was drinking was very enjoyable, sadly I didn’t have enough to become past caring!
The menu has all the usual pub favourites some of which are trendily described as Heritage Dishes. After a long time our food arrived, the staff kept telling us they hadn’t expected to be so busy… our dining area was not full.
For starters 2 of us had Classic Whitebait, it was a small portion and they were very dry. The other choice, Prawn Cocktail, was enjoyed. Our mains: Banger’ & Mash a Giant 10-inch pork & chorizo sausage, my husband said the sausage was very dry. Lamb Moussaka served with salad and a garlic baguette, my friend said it was quite tasty. British Sirloin Steak, an 8oz steak with the usual trimmings, this seems to have been the best choice! Mini Classic Pies, miniature versions of their classic Chicken & Ham Hock Pie and their award-winning Steak & Tanglefoot Pie, was also declared to be tasty but my choice, and I’m the one doing the review (!), the Fish & Chip Shop Platter, Tanglefoot beer battered fish, crisp scampi and salmon & smoked haddock fishcake, with chips, mushy peas and Chip Shop Curry was dreadful! It was all just so obviously frozen, the curry sauce was like brown water and the 2 pieces of accompanying white bread were stale, oh dear!
At least we didn’t have long to wait for the puds: the Treacle & Stem Ginger Tart was delicious. The other choices a St. Clements Sponge and Legendary Mini Puds (6 of them, shared by 2, looking very pretty in glasses), were fairly mediocre.
We would have liked coffees BUT we had been abandoned, no staff to be seen! We were the only ones left in the dining room, we decided to leave, there was no one in the bar/hall either. At last the young man who had said he was the duty manager appeared with other customers, perhaps he’d been showing them bedrooms. I felt sorry for him as I did for all the very pleasant staff, they obviously were very short staffed but the cold and the bad service, never mind the food had rather spoilt our lunch to put it mildly. I did tell him all this and he was very apologetic and gave us yet another big discount so we ended up paying £18 a head instead of £31. As I said earlier we would far rather have enjoyed everything and paid the full price. Senior management take note!
To sum up it was a disappointing experience but I would recommend you try it for your self, they must have been having a bad day as it has had good reviews elsewhere. Thank God for the company of our friends and the wine!
Ladies Who Lunch Scoring: The Beach House
LWL Review November 2014
2/5 Quality of food
3/5 Variety of menu
2/5 Staff and service
4/5 Ambiance and décor
2/5 Value for money
13/25 Total yummy factor. Review CJ
Ladies Who Lunch: score key
The higher the “Yummy” factor, the better the food and service.
The higher the number of £ signs the more expensive. (Roughly one £ sign = £5 per head).
5/5 Cannot be improved upon
4/5 Very good
If you visit, please tell them that Ladies Who Lunch in Hampshire sent you!