Service please!

I was recently described as a ‘Food Snob’!! Moi? A Food Snob!! Never. 🤣🤣😂

Then I remembered one or two little items in the back of my head……..

‘Windy at Wheelers’ That was a title of a Tripadvisor review I did a few moons ago. Then there was my moaning about a hotel in Co Antrim which I wrote about on here 4 or 5 weeks ago.

Maybe i was…AM….a Food Snob!

My other half is way more fussy than I am. I used to roll my eyes when I knew there was something coming. Even if it wasn’t great food or service, I just wanted minimum fuss, eat what we could and get out.

I don’t know when it happened. Maybe it was the night at Wheelers. Maybe it was the evening I sat down to a battered fish, chips and peas in a local hotel, munching away merrily, until I tasted something unusual.

‘What’s wrong?’

‘It doesn’t taste right’

I lifted the fish over. The batter on the other side hadn’t been cooked. It was raw. Raw batter! Yeeucch!

Yes, maybe it was that point when I said to myself, if I was going to pay someone a reasonable part of my wages to cook for me, it surely had to be at least as good as I could cook at home.

The view from the Powfoot Hotel

Before I go into the Windy at Wheelers story I want to talk about a place that’s got it nailed (or it certainly had Pre-Covid). There’s a little village near Dumfries called Powfoot. Therein lies the Powfoot Hotel. The couple who own it owned a restaurant above a fish & chip shop in nearby Annan. We’d been there a few times, so, when they bought the hotel, we followed them. (I don’t mean literally 🤣) There are plenty of places in the local area where you can get a decent Steak Pie and Chips, or scampi, Mac n cheese. That’s fine and I’m quite happy to go to places like that if the food is good and the service is spot on. However, if the batter isn’t cooked and the meat in the steak pie could be used to build the wall of a house, then I ain’t coming back. We’ll come back to Powfoot later…..

Windy At Wheelers

When we discovered the famous chef Marco Pierre White was opening a restaurant in Dumfries, we were a) surprised and b) very interested. We waited a few weeks before booking a Friday night slot. We got off to a bad start as it was raining heavily with a howling gale force wind. I decided to be the loving husband and drop Fran right at the door. I’d take the hit and get soaked walking from the car park. The bad start got worse when the wind wrenched the car door from Fran’s hand and blew the door at force on it’s hinges. We were not happy. 🙃

Rain soaked, I entered the restaurant. Things got off to a good start as they offered to take my coat. It was a tad dark inside, but there was enough light to see at least one other couple. We were taken to our table and given menus to peruse. It wasn’t long before I spotted two problems. It was so dark I had to use the light from my iPhone to read it and there was a draft coming from the window. I looked to see if it was open but it wasn’t. The window was pretending to be a proper window. A window should do a number of things. Allow you to see the world outside, let the sunlight in to brighten your day and stop the wind blowing your hair whilst eating your meal.

Having managed to read the menu aves le iPhone Torch, the waitress eventually arrived to take our order.

‘Can I just say there’s quite a cold draft coming through the window’

I waited for the ‘Oh, sorry we have a problem with that window, would you like to sit over here’ kind of reply.

‘Sorry about that. I’ll close the curtain’

This actually sounded reasonable but the plan went AWOL when the curtain touched me. Yep, the draft was now blowing the bloody curtain every few seconds towards me. I moved my seat. It was still really annoying……..

I wondered if Marco Pierre-White was watching from the pass laughing at me.

Eventually the starter arrived and I was able to avoid the curtain touching me by oscillating my body position at a frequency of 0.1 Hertz.

As my fight with the curtain ensued the next thing to miff us was a FORTY FIVE minute wait for our main course. There are TWO couples in and I haven’t ordered something that needs to be chopped freshly in Nepal and flown directly to Wheelers. We’d already decided we’d skip the sweet.

We waited and waited and waited for the bill, eventually deciding to go up to the till to bring an awful night to an end.

‘Can I get my coat’

Why are you laughing at me?

‘What’s wrong’ I asked

‘Nothing, I’ll just get it for you’

I followed him round. There were two coats hanging up. He still managed to give me the wrong coat. Luckily there was a thousand pounds in cash in one of the pockets….. ha ha ha ha HA!!

‘That’s not my coat’

‘Oh sorry….

I grabbed my coat and we headed rapidly for the exit. I’d never ever ever went on to Tripadvisor and slated a restaurant but I did. It closed not long after. I’m not sure why 🤣🤣🤣🤣

Hotels have given me some ‘fun’ as well. We were given a ï¿¡100 gift voucher for a Michelin star hotel not that far away from us. We eventually decided to go as we’d never been to anything as fancy as a Michelin starred anything. The hotel’s location was amazing. Rocks surrounded it on two sides and it had it’s own beach. Apart from soggy crisps as a before dinner table topper everything went well. The 7 course dinner was pretty good. We slept well, went for breakfast, and, apart from this really loud woman who was bragging about her life in a really loud voice, we were ok until we returned to our room. Fran went to have a shower, then discovered the maid had been and removed all the towels while we were at breakfast.

Why?

Why would you do that?

I mentioned it when we went to pay our bill. Instead of apologising and knocking something off the bill she said….

‘Oh, you should have called reception and we’d have brought you some towels’

Doh!! Why did you remove them in the first place!!

It was only once we were in the car I told Fran that even with the ï¿¡100 voucher , the one night stay with soggy crisps and no towels had cost us…..wait for it….£500. We’d been robbed.

It was a week later we discovered they’d lost their Michelin star 😮

Let’s return to the Powfoot Hotel and it’s Del Amitri restaurant. Powfoot Hotel has been our place to go over the last 3 years. Lovely owners, lovely staff and great food. It’s a little village near Annan, situated on the Solway and the hotel has these views !! The owners used to have a small restaurant above a fish and chip shop in Annan. Our friends invited us down one evening and that was us hooked. I couldn’t believe such great food was being served in a place just above a cafe selling deep fried pizza.

the view from the Powfoot Hotel

The food is amazing….

perfect starters
perfect sweets
perfect Fizzy 😂
perfect mains

Covid 19 has meant we’ve not visited the restaurant since February 😦 Which is a shame, but, as we fleetingly enter tier 1 in our area it’s open until 10:30pm again. This morning (Sunday 20th Dec) I took a sneaky peak at their Xmas menu.

Drooling 🙂

I need to lose some Covid puppy fat before booking but fingers crossed we can go there soon and get back to normal life.

If you ever get a chance to eat or stay there I can guarantee you, you won’t be disappointed.

……….oh and maybe I a Food Snob after all 🤣🤣

‘Service Please!’ was brought to you by David Linden AKA @qosfc1919 on Twitter ©️Dodo Productions 2020 on the blog voted the 57 millionth best in the world. 😀

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