The Westbourne reviews
I used to like The Westbourne but now I strongly recommend you avoid it. The service is terrible at best but rude on most occasions. An unfortunate example of a pub thinking it is too good for its customers. Time will tell as the many other bars
, restaurants, pubs in the area manage to balance quality with service.
by Jhunter, 11 Aug 2012
I like it - the staff are nice, the food is good, the drinks prices are ok... If you want a big smile and compliments with your food, go visit your mum!
by SebG, 24 Jul 2012
Most disgraceful service I've ever experienced. I got sprayed three times by the glass cleaning machine and, after a slight glance at the bartender, in return was told not to complain. An apology would have sufficed. Gave him a piece of my mind, an argument ensued and I walked out, refusing to spend my money there. Far nicer places to go, don't bother.
by dgarb24, 28 May 2012
Over the last few years, I’ve ended up at The Westbourne, and always wondered why afterwards. I’m usually drawn there for a bit of sun outside on the terrace, which is great for relaxing with a drink when it's calm and sunny.
The service, though, has always been ropey. Waiting and bar staff who seem annoyed to be working, or even have a basic idea of what they are meant to be doing (providing friendly, efficient customer service – if you were wondering what the answer was...), really let this place down. Yesterday, I experienced the worst service and attitude imaginable.
Simple things like not bring meals out at the same time, not thinking that people might need cutlery to eat, that glasses would be useful with water. Not uncommon errors perhaps, being told that your waitress "doesn't do drinks – go to the bar" when you're sitting down to a meal seems incredible. So too does being charged for bread, and not being told that you can't order a side of fries, when fries comes on several of the other dishes. It just demonstrated a complete lack of understanding about what customers might want or indeed expect. That, coupled with the unhelpful attitude, made the whole operation comedically bad.
Though, the worst was to come. Deciding to stand up for my consumer rights (not something I would normally worry about), I asked the waiter to remove the service charge from the final bill, as service was something my table of five certainly did not receive, giving him an explanation. Not surprisingly perhaps, his response was not a helpful apologetic one. I was told that I wouldn't be able to run a tab in the future if I wasn't willing to the pay service charge, which really had nothing to do with my complaint. Even worse, the manager then came over, also with a shirty attitude, to explain that I was, "being unfair to the waiting staff who don't get paid much and rely on tips to get a decent wage"...
In effect, I was being blamed for The Westbourne not paying their staff properly, and being told that service charge had nothing to do with the level of service that we had received. We were all dumbfounded, to be honest. Perhaps if the staff were really in such a dire need of the £16 to share between how many of them, they might actually smile, be polite, and try to maintain a basic level of service so that they would get a tip; incredible...
This will certainly be my last time to The Westbourne, which is a shame because the food, as it happens, was very nice. Isn’t it a shame for the kitchen staff that their hard work is ruined by front of house? Next time I'm over in W11, I’ll be spending my money at The Cow
(as I should have in the first place). Being trendy doesn’t mean you're allowed to have low standards. This is London, there are too many good places to go to deal with treatment like this.
by nicholas.b, 17 Oct 2011
Heard about this place after a representative came into my friend's shop saying that the management had changed and it has improved. Having never been to The Westbourne before, a group of us friends went down. I must say that I was appalled at the level of service. Admittedly it was a busy, hot Sunday afternoon, but when you and your 3 friends are stood at the bar and have been waiting for 20 mins to be served, it's shocking. More so because everyone else behind and next to us was being served! I hate to say it, but totally felt discriminated against - clearly I wasn't 'cool' enough!!
by Zilah M, 19 Apr 2011
Sadly this place has lost its charm. The Westbourne decoration hasn't changed since when I was once a regular... 10 years ago.
Rusty table outside, etc. That's a shame.
by George M., 16 Jan 2011
Not great. Could be though. Rude, arrogant staff and customers.
by 004, 05 Jan 2011
Nice pub, great food. Total shame about the 'optional' 10% service charge, which we refused to pay due to the lack of any discernable service. The response from one of the more reasonable members of staff was that this was fine; another, however, just completely freaked out: "What's it called when someone brings the food from the kitchen?" Erm... delivery!!
Service, on the other hand, is when someone welcomes you in, seats you down at your table, takes your drinks order and swiftly brings them, tells you about the food on the menu, gives you menus, takes your order and - again - brings it, speedily and promptly; it also involves checking you are happy with your food and drinks and seeing if there is anything else that could possibly be done to aid your comfort and enjoyment.
I'm not asking for overkill, but common decency, good manners and self-awareness at The Westbourne would go a long way to upping their star rating with me.
by JMM, 13 Dec 2010
If you feel like being a treated like sh*t and actually being purposefully embarrassed in front of your guests, then this is the place to go. This place employs the rudest, most arrogant bar staff that I have ever met in my life.
Apart from the usual 'who the f**k are you in my pub?' look which is standard when you walk in, I was unlucky enough to be served a clearly out of date pint of prawns (let's kill the customers too!). I sent them back and said they tasted a little too fishy for my liking (I've eaten the same dish at The Cow
numerous times and know how they should taste). In a very sarcastic, 'I hate my life because I work in a pub' way, the waiter took a long look at me and said, "They're prawns". I said that was pretty obvious but they don't taste right and a little off. He looked at me like I was a piece of dirt, turned around and walked off.
I waited there expecting the customary refund (I had just paid for a bottle of champagne for the table) but realised that this wasn't going to happen. The guy was laughing with his colleague and just pretended I didn't exist. What a brilliant place.
I have told everyone I know to avoid this place. Everyone says the same and I hope it goes bust.
by loza333 (2 reviews
), 31 Oct 2010
Best place to have a drink and eat. Well done! Very happy.
by Morri, 30 Apr 2010
Of all the pubs I've visited in Notting Hill, this is the worst so far.
The guy who served me behind the bar had no concept of customer service and this seemed to run through the place. I ordered a roast and asked to swap the parsnips for any other vegetable - a fairly straightforward request when the kitchen is turning out £14 mains you'd think, but clearly not! My request was not even entertained, with the guy stating: "The kitchen has never and will never alter the dishes". Unbelievable attitude!
So I ordered the pork and lentils instead, which, for just under £14, was the worst £14 I have ever spent on food. On top of this, the beer on tap (Deuchers) tasted like dish water.
A thoroughly disappointing experience and I would strongly recommend you go to The Cow
over the road instead, or any other pub in Notting Hill.
by rob44, 07 Sep 2009
My friend and I went to this pub last Monday night (3/8/09) and encountered 3 staff standing huddled behind the bar talking with their backs to us. My friend and I waited patiently until one them finally huffed and turned around to serve us without any apology or even making eye contact. First and last visit for me I'm afraid, there are way too many other better pubs in the area without wasting time at this one.
by liz.mcfarline, 05 Aug 2009
Seeing lots of bad reviews about staff below... but it didn't seem bad to me at all. The guy who served me most of the time was pretty polite. Really hot too, which I admit might have clouded my opinion of the service! Still, it seemed good and quick. Never been before. Great food. Will definitely be back.
by juniorminister, 21 Jul 2009
The sun comes out and you go to The Westbourne, it’s just what you do... but as the appearance of sunny days is so sporadic, you expect the bar staff/attitudes to have changed since your last visit, and for the past 8 years they haven’t.
It seems the owners of this establishment have a tendency to hire the rudest employees in London. Like, seriously, you’re a part-time bar man, get a grip and do what you're paid for - i.e. make people feel welcome. Every visit you're made to feel like you should be thankful to drink here; not, as it should be, the other way round. So, as always, one drink down and we go off to The Cow
, and always have a great time.
After another such experience last week at the Westbourne, I am boycotting this place and advising all whom I see to do the same. Will anything ever change? Probably not, I just wanted to vent... and hopefully some of the bar staff will read this.
by david_r, 04 Jun 2009
Completely changed for the worse. Went back after a couple of years and almost could not recognise it. Long wait for the order even with very few customers. Small portions and average-quality food. Low hygiene (hair in a cake). Awful staff and pestering minicab drivers outside.
by GNESALB, 21 Apr 2009
This place is popular for the crowd, rather than anything else. My latest (and last) experience was awful. And the service appalling. Sunday lunch - I ordered the roast pork and received a plate full of pork fat complete with side dishes. Since there was no meat, but fat only, I asked for it to be changed. At which point the waiter brought the same plate back to me and in a nearly threatening manner said that the fat was meat and they would not change it. Service at its worst.
by Eatingoutlover, 19 Jan 2009
Good food and good atmosphere, although a bit chaotic - meaning you have to shout to someone to draw attention. Waiting staff could do much better, the place feels understaffed and it takes ages to order. Last food order at 10pm a joke. Sounds familiar? Hey, welcome to London!
by Les_Grossman, 07 Oct 2008
Zero stars. Having phoned to make a booking for two people for Sunday lunch at 1.30pm - not exactly an unreasonable time for Sunday lunch, you would imagine - and having been spoken to extremely rudely and curtly throughout the conversation, I was then asked "Do you not want to come earlier? That's our latest booking and there are only two of you". When I said that no, I didn't want to come earlier, and that I felt from the entire tone of the conversation that they didn't really want to take my booking, they hung up on me. Nice. Not what you'd expect from a pub that's supposed to be so highly regarded.
by Leanne305, 01 Oct 2008
I love the staff (one in particular!) I do not live in London but I stop there every time I'm in town.
by supertabs, 13 Nov 2007
I used to love this pub. Food is always great and they serve Breton cider. But last night was a complete disappointment. Someone was selling pirate copies of DVDs by shoving them in your face while you were eating. I thought I'd quietly mention it to the staff but the barman simply said "Well it's not bothering me". Fairly taken aback, I went back to the table and told the others, at which point the barman came over to the table and started lecturing us on why people like that "with issues"should be allowed to sell pirate DVDs and that he allowed her in every day. After repeatedly telling him I didn't want to have this particular argument with him, I eventually had to tell him twice to simply go away before he left. He then proceeded to go back behind the bar and pick at the bowl of green beans behind the food counter which had either come back on other people's plates or were going on to them (not sure which)!! No gloves, completely unhygenic and thoroughly rude. Lovely pub but spoilt by totally arrogant staff. Don't feel like ever returning after years of going. What a shame.
by luce g, 12 Sep 2007
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