Boatshed Restaurant Review
One of the restaurants I forgot to review whilst in Stornoway was the Boatshed restaurant. It's located right next to HS1 and is owned by the same company as HS1, Eleven and the Cabarfeidh. The restaurant is located on Cromwell Street and their website can be visited here.
We booked a table earlier that day. In Stornoway, it's advisable to book. Sometimes restaurants are fully booked out and sometimes they don't like people walking in from the street.
When we arrived, it was 5.30pm. We went to the reception first since it's the first part you come to. There was already a couple waiting to be seen. The receptionist seemed a bit useless...she had to go into the restaurant and ask if there were tables free (there was only one table in the restaurant!). There were none apparently. They went to look at post cards, David and I were waiting to be seen, but the receptionist kept answering the phone when it was ringing without acknowledging us. The ladies who were asking for a table decided it was okay for them to butt the queue, and asked to book a table for a different time! When they left, the receptionist AGAIN took another call.
Finally after 10 minutes, she seen to us, and sent us through to the restaurant where we were waiting about 5 minutes to be seen. There was no one in the restaurant, the waitress seemed to be doing her own thing in the back. The list of bookings can be seen clearly, and there was clearly enough tables for the ladies to have a table too!
When we got the early bird menu, we were totally disappointed. The menu was almost exactly the same as the HS1 Sunday menu! You'd expect it to be different since they are different restaurants. Price for 2 course: £18. 3 Course: £23
David had the Indonesian style chicken satay with peanut sauce for starters. It was okay. This was also on the HS1 menu, so it wasn't new to us.
I had the mussels. Again on all menus in Stornoway. Most restaurants on the mainland tend to remove the tube worms and barnacles from mussels before serving...cala hotels don't.
David had the lamb shank rogan josh. This was also on the HS1 menu. It tasted fine, succulent as always. Rice came in a separate bowl.
This was the ONLY thing on the menu which wasn't on the HS1 menu! It's a haunch of Deer with ruby port winterberry sauce. It was good, a nice big bit of meat which was good. It was served with the veggies you see, and also a separate bowl of boiled veggies. The bowl of veggies was not needed, and was totally dry! Presentation wise, it could be better.
Before coming to the restaurant, I went onto their website and noticed that the owners have written "though you couldn't reasonably expect to find out most expensive dishes on this menu" in the early bird section. In my opinion this seems rather cocky. People know they won't be getting the most expensive items on this menu, it's the early bird "saver" for a reason. Anyways.
Once we finished, we decided to sit out in their "lobby" for a few drinks. But sadly throughout the whole time, we were looked at my their manager and barman as if we shouldn't be there. They had people sitting out there eating too. We felt so uncomfortable, and in the end left due to the rudeness.
I think this restaurant needs a bit of a shape up. Don't leave guests waiting, have a different menu to the restaurant next door (even if it is the same kitchen!!), and respect your guests, after all we are paying customers.
The good thing about the restaurant is the decor. I quite enjoy the boat theme and old sports gear.
Overall a 2/5 for the experience. Due to menu choices (same as HS1), lack of service from waitress, rudeness from manager and barman, aswell as lack of acknowledgement from the receptionist.
HS1 next door seems better, better service, and you get the same food!
'till next time