It is important to remember that for every bad review there are probably lots of satisfied customers. These reviews are the comments of individual visitors to Information Britain and have not been authenticated by us. They should not be taken as the views of Crawbar Ltd - publishers of this web site.

Reviews of Candlestick, Essendon

Best rates for a Local Hotel

Review by L Sheridan on 30th June, 2011

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Visited this lovely little rural pub last week and what a great experience. Lovely food, very well priced wine list and helpful friendly staff. I was pleased to see two local real ales being served, one from Tring Brewery and another from Buntingford. Certainly not abysmal customer service as the last reviewer has written. Will definitely be returning on our next trip down to see our relatives who live locally.

Date visited: 24 June 2011

Review by A Sheridan on 8th June, 2011

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We went here on a Bank Holiday Monday and booked ahead for four adults and three kids. With twins under one we were ten minutes late arriving from our booked time slot but it took them five minutes to seat us. After 20 minutes no one had come to take our order so we asked at the bar whether it was waiter service or whether we should order at the bar. We were told that the waiter would be over shortly. We ordered soup as a starter for the adults and sausages and mash for the toddler. It then took another FIFTY MINUTES for the soup - yes, *soup*, the stuff you can heat through and serve instantly - to arrive. This was after we had enquired twice where our food was. Both times we were told, "It's on its way. The kitchen's getting it ready now," with no explanation or apology. Finally, when the soup was served, no bread arrived. The waiter wasn't sure that the soup actually came with bread, so he had to go to the kitchen to check, which took another five minutes. Then we had to ask for butter to go with the bread. The couple seated in the same section as us also went up to the bar, during our fifty minute wait, and asked where their main meals were. So it wasn't just us, it seems. They were told the same line: "It's on its way," with no apology. By the time the main meal arrived, over an hour from when we placed our order, we weren't hungry any more, just annoyed. The toddler had lost his patience, after being asked to wait that long when he was so hungry. The vegetarian portion was measly and the couscous that was served was plain and soggy. When we left, pointedly not leaving a service tip, I said quietly but firmly to the barman and his colleague that perhaps he could pass on the message to the manager: that it was such a shame. When we arrived and sat down we had been feeling very positive about the Candlesticks based on its reputation and its setting. Over the course of a FIFTY MINUTE WAIT FOR SOUP with NO APOLOGY this positive feeling had been completely eroded. Imagine our surprise when the barman said that it was our fault that the food was late. He said that if we hadn't come half an hour late then we wouldn't have "missed our slot". We told him that in actual fact, we had been only ten minutes late in arriving, only it took them half an hour to come back to take our order. Then no one had come to apologise or warn us in advance that it was going to take fifty minutes to serve up the first course. We told them that instead of blaming US for THEM being late, they could have admitted fault and apologised. It is not only basic customer service, it is a sense of courtesy. Staff at the Candlesticks pub in Essendon have none of these values. Even as we left, they were refusing to apologise for the late food, still insisting it was our fault. Er, right. Conclusion: Nice chips, but don't come here if you want to want to be served this side of Christmas. Abysmal customer service.

Date visited: 31 May 2011

Review by Jane Reardon on 7th September, 2010

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We hadn't been to The Candlestick for a couple of years, but were in the area so thought we would drop in for a bite to eat. We had heard it was under new management and loved going there years ago, we just hoped they hadn't ruined what was a lovely country pub. We arrived about 8.15pm to find a full car park and therefore had to park on the road, but we didn't mind this as we thought it was an indication that something good was happening inside. As we walked in we were delighted with the transformation that the refurbishment had given the place. We looked around but unfortunately there were no free tables. We asked at the bar if there were any tables available and the very helpful young man explained they were fully booked at this time but were expecting a couple of tables to become available within the next 30 minutes. We decided to have a drink in the bar and wait for a table. We got chatting to a few of the locals who were really pleased that the new couple had taken over the pub and they assured us we wouldn't be disappointed with the food. Our table was ready after about 45 minutes but that wasn't a problem as we knew we should've booked. We sat at our table in the lovely comfortable chairs and both decided to have the rib-eye steak. There was lots to choose from, but my husband and i do like a good steak, and a good steak it was too! Value for money, and friendly service. We didn't have desserts as we were absolutely stuffed after our meal, but we decided to book a table for next week so that we could come back and try something different as it all looked very nice. The only thing i would say is that it was very busy and we did have to wait slightly longer than expected for our meals, but as the waitress explained everything is cooked from fresh, and i must say it was certainly worth the wait!

Date visited: Saturday 28th August 2010

Review by Paul Meadows on 16th August, 2010

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We had been recommended The Candlestick by some friends who have started using it regularly, and were not disappointed. It was nice to go to one of these 'gastro pubs' where all the food was obviously fresh! Not a frozen microwave tasteless offering that you tend to get at many of these establishments. I had the steak which was beautifully cooked and my friend went for the salmon wellington. We had a couple of glasses of wine and a coffee each. A great evening, very reasonably priced, can't wait to go back!

Date visited: 7th August 2010

Review by anon on 15th August, 2010

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what an amazing turn around for this pub, the revamp is fantastic staff and MANAGERS(in response to mr mode) were all very welcoming and showed no agression at all, all the food was very tasty and well they won me over and ill be back time and time again.

Date visited: 14/08/2010

Review by Michael Burton on 13th August, 2010

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A fantastic evening! We originally just popped in to have at look at the newly refurbished place, but after browsing the menu we decided to stay and eat in the restaurant. The decor gives a nice warm feel and the atmosphere was very reaxled. We were stunned at the price of the wines, and how cheap they were. We went for the Chilean Merlot at 11.45 for the bottle, a lovely wine. We both had starters, which you could tell had been home made, very generous portions too! I had the sea bream for main which was stunning and my wife had the fish and chips which she said was the best she'd ever had. We were so full after this we weren't going to have a dessert, but were so intrigued by the deep fried jam sandwich we had to have one. It was gorgeous, an innovative dish that finished off a perfect meal. Will definitely be going back, a lovely evening and great value for money. Definitely recommend

Date visited: 03/08/2010

Review by Richard Mode on 31st July, 2010

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Where to start? The beer was excellent but then you might expect this as their "sister" pub just up the road is renowned for it's beer. The food was mostly very ordinary. Starters: Haloumi with fig - the fig was under-ripe and teasteless; the rabbit and pistachio terrine could have done with more seasoning. Mains: Plaice with pak-choi and couscous - the couscous was plain and tasteless; stuffed chicken breast with sweet potatoes was excellent but the thrice cooked chips needed cooking a fourth time! Puds: The choc mousse was very good but the lemon bakewell was inedible and was replaced BUT they insisted on trying to charge me for three desserts and we ha a "discussio" which they lost! An otherwise pleasant evening spoilt at the end by an agressive manager - so much for the customer always being right. We certainly won't be going back!

Date visited: 30th July 2010

Review by John on 5th October, 2008

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Excellent paub serving good food and real ales. Large gardn and car park. Well worth the visit

Date visited: 05/10/08

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