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“Strange food”
Review of The Woodman

The Woodman
Ranked #1 of 1 Quick Bites in Ashtead
Cuisines: British
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Reviewed 6 April 2018

OK in a nutshell - The food here is basically inedible, perhaps because they don't use conventional ovens - they have microwaves with a grilling/oven function and all the food on the massive menu is delivered from a central laboratory and is designed to be cooked by that process - from frozen. So basically don't order anything that can't be cooked in this way as they will still attempt to cook it that way regardless. For example: Nachos - who can ruin them? Well the Woodman can - they are grilled and served with the top ones burnt and all the rest of them cold and what little cheese there is for some illogical reason not melted at all. All the food is strange. I'm not asking for the World - just something edible. Also a passing familiarity with the wines on offer would help - ask for a bottle from the menu and someone will just grab the bottle nearest to them and give it to you. Suspect most of the staff to be on minimum wage so I'm not really blaming them, if a company wants to charge inflated prices for disturbing food it's not the fault of the poor people take the flack for serving it. Perhaps as with some restaurants who operate a ByoB policy, perhaps the Woodman could operate a ByoF policy as the interior is pleasant enough and we could all come and enjoy ourselves with a takeaway?

Date of visit: March 2018
    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank bunnylavender
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
General Manager A, Manager at The Woodman, responded to this reviewResponded 30 April 2018

Hi Bunnylavender, thank you for taking the time to let us know about your recent experience. We are disappointed to hear that you are not satisfied with your visit.

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22 - 26 of 256 reviews

Reviewed 2 April 2018

This place used to be great for a no frills meal + drinks in a nice setting. Ember Inns if I remember. Someone somewhere along the line decided (it being bang in wealthy Surrey commuters-ville after all), that it was actually a Gastro Pub, but without upgrading the food offering to suit. So now it is the usual over-priced but highly mediocre pub food (and all the drinks have gone up accordingly) typical of a pub who paints itself greige and thinks its a little bit special. My Beer battered haddock and chips was a tiny slab of reheated frozen fish inside a cavernous airy stale case of chunky factory batter alongside a 'diet' portion of chips and a teaspoon of mushy peas. For north of a tenner.

That said, the staff are amazing. I hope they are paid everything the management obviously saves on its food :-/

Visit if you enjoy an ambience of Surrey yummy mummies / nannies with their little darlings on the way home from school downing overpriced iceland produce, but then do heap praise and admiration on the long suffering effusive staff.

Date of visit: March 2018
    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank 200bookings
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
General Manager A, Manager at The Woodman, responded to this reviewResponded 30 April 2018

200bookings, we regret to hear that you had a negative experience with us, but would appreciate the chance to turn your experience around.

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Reviewed 2 April 2018

Went here after finding it on the internet as a place to have Sunday lunch after a walk on Ashtead Common.
Roast potatoes were burnt
Service without a smile or even a comment
Deep fried mushroom starter needed a change of oil.
You don’t expect the Ritz in a local pub, but this was poor.

Date of visit: March 2018
Thank gingerwarrior2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
General Manager A, Manager at The Woodman, responded to this reviewResponded 30 April 2018

Gingerwarrior2016, we're disappointed to hear of the negative experience you had at our location. We appreciate all reviews, and appreciate you giving us the chance to improve by providing us with this feedback.

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Reviewed 26 February 2018

We've been to the Woodman a few times before without any problem and decided to return in spite of quite a few less than favourable reviews.

Arriving at midday Sunday for lunch I ordered our drinks at the bar and heard the lady behind the bar apologise for the fact that she was the 'only one on'.

However, she was very friendly and welcoming and took my food order. My order of cottage pie with vegetables arrived disturbingly quickly which brought the image of a microwave to mind. The vegetables were overcooked to the point of desiccation. I picked up the solitary charred parsnip and ate it like a stick of rock. I would love to know when this meal was first cooked.

I must repeat that the staff - few of them as there were - deserved medals. Five star - both of them. You can tell something was seriously amiss with the staffing level when a while later the chef appeared at the bar to take my order for coffee and then a couple of minutes later brought it to my table!

My abiding memory was of wonderful staff. My advice to the management is to sort things out before they leave.

I really hope things improve here because this is a well located pub / restaurant within a sizeable catchment area.

Will return when staffing levels improve.

Date of visit: February 2018
    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank TonysolihullUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
General Manager A, Manager at The Woodman, responded to this reviewResponded 28 February 2018

Hi Tony, Thank you for taking the time to give us your honest feedback, and bringing this to our attention. Unfortunately we did have staffing issues on the day of your visit and worked really hard to keep up with standards and service times to a minimum. We hope you give us another chance and visit us again soon.

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Reviewed 22 February 2018 via mobile

Premium prices for a less than Wetherspoons service. I paid £8 for a gin and tonic (which is hardly a cheap and cheerful price) and it was served in a glass that was very clearly broken with a huge crack running right down the side of the glass. I waited five minutes until the person who served me paid me attention again. When I very politely pointed it out (hey we all make mistakes!) she didn’t even apologise or in any way respond to me, she literally just grabbed another glass and sloshed my drink into that. No sorry, no offer of a refund or discount on another drink. If my friends hadn’t just ordered their first round of drinks I would have just left.

Later in the evening I ordered a cocktail from the menu and the guy serving me had no clue how to make it. He had to find someone else to make it for him, all the while I stood there waiting for five minutes before the drink was even made - without an apology. London bar prices for working mans pub service.

Won’t be coming back.

Date of visit: February 2018
2  Thank mceixtiy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
General Manager A, Manager at The Woodman, responded to this reviewResponded 26 February 2018

Hi Mceixtiy, thank you for taking the time to let us know about your recent experience. We are disappointed to hear that you are not satisfied with your visit. Thank you for bringing this to our attention. We will use your comments to refine our efforts to ensure this issue does not happen again.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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