Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Review: The Hatch (Basingstoke)

Date of visit: 11th August 2012

The Hatch part of the Chef and Brewer Pub Co, this has been my mother-in-laws best restaurant for years, well not anymore.  This is going to be my most scathing review to date.  I have eaten here before it was taken over by the Chef  and Brewer and it was brilliant, it was one of my late father-in-laws favourite restaurants.  It is my husband’s Birthday this month and we made the journey from Hertford to Basingstoke to celebrate with his Mum and his Sister.  Various suggestions where made of places to eat and my Mum-in-law’s only choice was The Hatch.  On arrival one was greeted by a tatty white Christmas tree with pamphlets trying to coax you into booking your Christmas functions there, it is August, why must I been faced with that.  The black board says wait to be seated, we waited and waited and eventually someone attended to us and said sit anywhere, really we waited for ever to be told that.  Strangely it was very empty, this was not usually the case with them, we were afraid that because we had not booked we would not get a table.  As in the past they used to  be overflowing at the seams.  Perhaps this should have been a warning!  We seated ourselves and made a note of all our orders and went to the bar to place our orders.  They were told that there would a thirty minute wait for the food.  Great no problem, and the bill was paid up front (something that really gets me going as you have no real recall and can’t just walk out as they have your money already).  By the time us girls wanted our second bottle I suddenly looked at my watch and asked the boys to check what time we had placed the order, it was placed at 14h18 and it was now 15h20, a whole hour since we had placed the order.  My husband went to ask the manager where our food was and was told that they were plating up.  Our table faced the kitchen doors and we should have realised something was wrong when the doors remained closed the time that we were seated except for a baby pram coming out of the kitchen.  Eventually food started to exit the kitchen, but not ours, it was going to the outside patrons.  Then the food was going back into the kitchen un touched.  It was now twenty minutes since the manger had said our food was being platted up, 15h40.  Starting to feel very hungry and in need of blotting paper as we had now finished our second bottle of wine.  By this time my usually mild tempered husband had started to get more and more vocal and asked once again to see the manager.  Who apologised and apologized and said that is was not normal and he had been let down by staff.  I stated that perhaps it would have been better that he should rather have  closed the kitchen and just served drinks, as it is a pub.   Upon my return home I did a google search on The Hatch and guess what, this was not a once off.  Tripadvisor has numerous complaints about them for the last couple of months.  The manager did give us our money back for the food, the least he could do.  We were at the point of leaving and rather getting a McDonalds, when our food finally arrived, time 16h00.  We were so hungry I did not even try and take photos, not that they would have been any good.  Danielle’s chips with her burger where ice cold and we sent them back, returned a few seconds later, must have been put in the microwave.  My sister-in-laws chicken salad came with a rock hld pitta bread that I had tapped on the table and tore, and handed in my hands to the waitresses hands.  This was also returned soggy on a side plate, and yes it was the same one.  The manger gave us desserts on the house and coffee’s, but sorry to say that they will never see us again.  The summer pudding did look good that my brother-in-law had. I suppose this is what happens when big chain groups buy our local pubs and put a manager, who has no real loyalty to a place in charge.

Website: The Hatch

London Road, Old Basing, Basingstoke, Hampshire, RG24 7JL

Tel:   01256 807617

Rating Guide

5 Stars - Perfect
4.5 Stars - Exceptional
4 Stars - Excellent
3.5 Stars - Very good
3 Stars - Good
2.5 Stars - Average
2 Stars - Bad
1.5 Stars - Very bad
1 Star - Dire


  1. Dire isn't it, these big companies think they can come in and make a massive profit from the hard work that the previous owners did. Such a shame when it had a good reputation. I hope it didn't ruin D's day too much. xx

  2. It is heartbreaking when a beloved restaurant fails you. So sorry it was meant to be a celebration as well.


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