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All photos (173)
All photos (173)
What is Travellers’ Choice?
Tripadvisor gives a Travellers’ Choice award to accommodations, attractions and restaurants that consistently earn great reviews from travellers and are ranked within the top 10% of properties on Tripadvisor.
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What you can expect during your visit
Face masks required for staff in public areas
Hand sanitiser available to guests & staff
Daily temperature and symptom checks for staff
Socially distanced dining tables
Staff required to regularly wash hands
Tables disinfected between guests
Updated 28/12/20 Safety precautions are provided by the property and are not checked by Tripadvisor for accuracy.
All reviews tasting menu petit fours custard tortellini oysters charcuterie pork whatley manor wine flight matching wines dining experience a real treat his team head chef special occasion drawing room asian flavours
This is a top class experience. Starting off with. drink in the lovely cozy yet large lounge, you read the tasting menu which like many top class restaurants is the only menu on offer. Allergies and preferences dealt with the food starts with lovely canapes...and charcuterie from the local farm.
The experience continues with a visit to the kitchen where we received a very nice welcome from the Head Chef Ricki Weston, an obvious asset to the kitchen, and also three more small dishes. Here begins the realisation of the eastern influences in the dishes.
Then through to the nice dining room, with three separate rooms. Our only negative was we thought it was a bit bright and a dimmer would help. Each dish was lovely, clam with trout roe, lovely sourdough, chorizo risotto excellent as were the tortellini and the lobster. I was getting a little full as the beef was delivered but my partner cleaned the plate. Then onto desserts that there is always room for, each of them excellent.
Service was both good and friendly, just as we like it.
This is a top class place with a top class tasting menu from a top class kitchenMore
Quite simply sensational! The journey you are taken on with the flavours are exceptional with every dish so cleverly thought out. What a great touch spending time in the kitchen watching Niall and his team in full flow and this just added an extra dimension...to what is a complete experience. We have Eaten in some amazing restaurants including 3 Michelin stars but we have to say this is probably the most enjoyable.More
I'm not going to describe the dishes because part of the fun of a tasting menu is finding things out as you go along. Let me say, we've done a few tasting menus and this was one of the most inventive. The asian fusion flavours...are brilliant, and we were both delighted by dishes which we may have turned down purely on the ingredients.
The staff were welcoming and friendly and nothing was too much trouble. The waitress was engaging and informative. The sommelier was exceptional. We were tempted by the flight of wines but didn't want the volume of 7 glasses. We mused on this a little and he jumped to offer us 'selections' from the flight. We could ask for a wine when we wanted one - and he took our requirements and those of the food into account. Exceptional choices, very knowledgeable and really made the evening.
Glad to be able to bring the frogs home for the next day. Thank you!More
Everything about dining here is exceptional from the initial welcome right through the whole evening.
Starting with charcuterie from the hotel's own beef cows while you have a drink in the lounge, you are then taken through to the kitchen where you get to meet...Niall Keating and his team who present you with three other dishes explaining every bit of detail. What all the component food items are, where they are from and how they are cooked. The kitchen is calm and professional.
The restaurant itself is contemporary and staff are attentive but not formal. Each item on the tasting menu is brought to the table and fully explained with much made of the provenance of each part. The wine pairings suggested work well with the food and include some unusual wines. Armenia?!
A 7 course tasting menu plus the 3 dishes tasted in the kitchen may sound like a lot of food but at the end of the evening we both comfortably full, a reflection of the care and passion taking by Niall and his team to produce a well balanced, interesting and high quality menu.More
We were dead excited about our meal at Whatley Manor, and the food did not let us down. The atmosphere in the bar beforehand, as well as in the dining room itself was great. The gin selection is great.
The food was exceptional. From the...very start, we enjoyed the asian flavours, delicate textures and punchy savoury notes. Highlights were the pork belly tortellini (incredibly savoury, but well balanced), the chorizo risotto (the best dish of the day) and the lobster dish. The dishes complemented each other perfectly. If you like Japanese flavours, this style of cooking is for you.
Unfortunately, the evening will always be overshadowed by the service. Perhaps understandably, the restaurant seemed overstretched - and perhaps many restaurants are also in the same boat. However, we started our experience at 1915 and only finished our final course at 0015. This was far too long even for a two star dining experience, and we were very tired by the end. Perhaps we aren't hardcore enough for this kind of thing anymore!
Overall, we really wish the service had been slightly quicker - but it will not stop us from returning in the future.More
It was a privilege to eat here after waiting several months.
As one would expect, there are clearly high standards and ample skill in the cooking and presentation of the dishes. I also appreciated the specific pescatarian dishes added to the tasting menu.
A couple...of points preventing the full 5 stars include the questionable umeshi desert and the fact 2 wines were brought out at the same time...why not do it one by one?More
Date of visit: April 2021
General Manager, Marketing at The Dining Room at Whatley Manor, responded to this reviewResponded 5 June 2021
Thank you for patiently waiting until we could welcome you to the Dining Room. Your review is very much appreciated and great to know standards were met and your special requests were met. We note your observations and thank you for those too as we...More
We had the 7 course menu with snacks, petit fours and matching wines. The food was very nice with a wide range of intriguing ingredients and flavours. The service was very good, efficient, professional and knowledgable. The meal was a nice experience.
Beautiful grounds and building, as you drive in. Was not sure what to expect with Covid measures in place but was delighted that we were led into the drawing room for pre-drinks.
Sat in front of a roaring fire, in a beautiful room full of...character.
We had trouble downloading the drinks menu and after being asked for our drinks 3 times, they gave us a paper copy. This was a lot nicer to look through at all the different wines. Descriptions of the wines would have been nice but they have a sommelier to ask any questions, which we did regarding a bottle of rose champagne.
They only offer one food menu, which is the tasting menu and ask about any allergies.
After our cocktail pre-drinks and delicious nibbles served with them, we were led into the dining room.
This room took us by surprise as it is very bright yellow, lacks atmosphere and character. After being in the beautiful drawing room, this was definitely mood altering.
We decided to add the wine journey to our meal to fully experience what was on offer here. We can not fault the choices of wine to accompany our meal. The sommelier was delightful, friendly and extremely knowledgeable. She really made our wine journey enjoyable.
The food we did not enjoy so much. We eat in all sorts of places and was disappointed here after reading positive reviews. We felt as if the food was almost on a conveyor belt just waiting to come out, as that is the only menu offered. I am sure the menu was well thought out and took ages to perfect but for us it lacked imagination, texture at times and presentation.
The staff do a wonderful job looking after you and your needs.
We are pleased we visited and may try the other restaurant next time.More
Date of visit: October 2020
WhatleyManorHotel, Marketing at The Dining Room at Whatley Manor, responded to this reviewResponded 27 October 2020
Thank you for your review and all your kind comments about the service team. Just so sorry that for you the décor and food were not so inspiring. We respect your thoughts and can only acknowledge that food is approached with personal preferences, it always...More
Response from ColchesterSleeper | Reviewed this property |
The sommeliers at Whatley are very good and always seek input about what type of wines you like. They wouldn’t frown on anyone and will be happy to ensure both of you get the wines you enjoy. If you want they have quite a... More
The sommeliers at Whatley are very good and always seek input about what type of wines you like. They wouldn’t frown on anyone and will be happy to ensure both of you get the wines you enjoy. If you want they have quite a good selection of wines by the glass.
Don’t worry they will be most helpful to you.