Free bottle of wine when two people order 3 course meal
An original, independent review by Devon Francis:
Hallmark Hotel and Spa for dinner? Why not. I’d popped in before for an afternoon coffee once, and always wondered how the place would fare for an evening meal.
Hallmark Hotel can definitely pride themselves on their service as right from the start, speaking to a lovely chap on the phone, the staff have been very attentive. Upon arrival, the efficient service gives me high hopes for the rest of the evening and before I know it I’m sitting choosing my main course.
I tuck into my complimentary bread and dipping oil that’s presented on a fashionable rustic piece of wood, a quirky touch that I’d expect more from a bohemian café in Boscombe Spa. If my main course hadn’t arrived so quickly I would have taken up the offer of more.
At £11.75, my Baked Salmon Wellington arrives; it’s small but perfectly formed. My knife glides straight through the pastry and I discover a layer of unexpected onions which adds a sweet twist. Without being overpowering, the watercress sauce accents the strong flavours of the juicy pink salmon. The wilted greens are delicious too.
As I hear nearby customers order the beef stir fry it’s clear the restaurant is open to various people, and appeals equally well for families as well as a candlelit meal for two, with dishes to satisfy any palate.
Led Zeplin’s Stairway To Heaven plays softly and I wish I’d thought about my seating decision more thoroughly and followed suit with a couple asking to move. The restaurant has different nooks and crannies to it showing off an unusual layout, however, basking in sunlight whilst overlooking the pool would have taken preference over my cosy two-seated table.
My dessert choice of Rhubarb & Vanilla Crème Brûlée at £5.25 is recommended to me by the waitress. The Crème Brûlée itself doesn’t have the thick sugary glaze I’m used to but the sweet creamy custard is delightful. The random piece of rhubarb looks a tad confusing, but the flavours mix beautifully and soon it’s all gone.
As my plate is taken, I sip my water perfectly full and not bursting at the seams. “Did you enjoy your evening madam?” I’m asked. Yes I did!