Sunday, November 25, 2012

Burt Hotel Melrose - A Disappointment

I have popped into Burts for a coffee now and again on a cold winters day and maybe I had over rated them in my mind and over praised them at home based on that experience. But I had been impressed by this old quality hotel in the heart of my favorite Borders town. I took my family their for lunch today and I am sorry to say they went down a few notches indeed!

All started off well. We arrived and had a bottle of Beaujolais and although I thought that the Brushcetta was really just an ordinary garlic bread, the olives were nice and I was in a good mood.  That was until after 45 minutes we were still there waiting for our meal while EVERY other table in the place, some of whom came in 25 minutes after us were served. Something was clearly wrong as waitresses walked past us with averted eyes, but no one spoke.

Just as I got up to leave extremely angry by now, the food arrived and as I am being critical it needs talking through. My meal was the house roast sirloin with trimmings. The menu urged one to be aware it would be medium rare....it was overdone. The gravy came from I know not where but certainly not from the meat, it tasted like burnt syrup and was awful. The potatoes and vegetables (beans and broccoli)  were perfectly cooked but unfortunately covered in dark brown syrup. The meat was not tender, whether this is Baird the butchers fault or the hotel I do not know.

My wife chose duck which came overdone and dry and the sauce was not up to anyone's standards. One son had roast chicken and said it was lovely, but I guess by then he was actually scared I would stand up and make a fuss. The other son chose pork and noodles. Well what a strange meal he got, the pork was tender and tasty but the boodles were overcooked and stuck together and looked frankly disgusting. Strange but I saw someone else with noodles and they were much nicer looking.

So what happened? was it as my wife suspects that Burts prefer locals? The locals next to us clearly felt sorry for us and got their meal in less than 10 minutes....or was it some kitchen catastrophe which they were too embarrassed to admit? I will never know as I certainly will not be going there again and spending 96 pounds of good money on a poor lunch. I mentioned my disappointment to the lady at the bar when I paid and her response was "oh that's too bad".  Oh and by the way they let the fire go out on a chilly day!