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Arkley Hotel, Barnet

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user reviews of the Arkley Hotel, Barnet

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

Still very much more a dining than drinking establishment - though there is a little area near the bar that is a bit more drinker friendly. Higher prices to deter the riff-raff (and if it wasn't teeming down outside I wouldn't have ducked in).
Snarling_Mallard - 16 Dec 2019 13:49
booked a table here last week for a birthday. Booked for 4pm and only got the table at 4.30. At 4.45 they came to take our order and when we ordered the sunday roasts we were told they had run out. Why did they give us the menus if they were close to running out , we were a group of 10 people so they should have known better?

Waiter had the I cant be bothered attitude, manager was not very helpful or apologetic either.
Having read other reviews I wish i hadnt bothered with this place, a complete let down.

Staff are rude and unhelpful and dont know what good customer service is. Dont bother going here unless desperate, other reviews imply food is microwaved so I m guessing we didnt miss much.

Definately going to avoid this place from now on.
tullster - 14 Aug 2011 13:34
Don't know what the genius in the kitchen was doing on my visit but it certainly wasn't cooking! Defrosting possibly!
stemginger - 16 Feb 2011 13:37
This was my first visit to this pub, recommended by a friend and i loved it. Stopped just for a beer and a quick catch up with a friend and ended up having a great dinner and a few more beers, Loved the specials of the day, this place has got a genius in the kitchen, beers in great condition.
Lucarava - 26 Oct 2010 16:11
Decent but overpriced food and average beer.
GaryB007 - 5 Sep 2010 23:37
Was driving past last night and noticed that the old tired Ember Inn had been made over so decided to stop and try the place out for a quick one.
Oh dear, another Gastro restaurant makeover where Footballers wives meets Ikea, firmly aimed at the well heeled residents of Arkley and Barnet who have more money than common sense, and I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry.
For the record the beers available were TT Landlord, Doombar and a third pump which was unclipped. The TT Landlord was fine, but be prepared to remortgage first.
Felt duly bound to peruse the menu, because I got the feeling that I may be ejected if I didn’t commit to spending more than a pint. At that point I decided to laugh.
If the local Chelsea tractor crowd are suckered in to paying that much for a plate of pretentious nosh, just to be seen, then who am I to begrudge them and they are welcome to it.
I will continue to drive past to the real pubs remaining in Barnet.

Gann - 14 Jul 2010 21:58
Gave it ago. Pleasant inside. Tried the Cornish bitter and it was ok. All the lagers seem to be continental and are quite strong. Did eat. Bread and olives ok. Main course very so-so. The steak best described as cold! The price absolutely way above the standard of presentation/content. Tables of 8 or more attract a 10% service charge, (eh??) therefore a burger (for example) @ £10.95 becomes £12.04. What was presented was a poor quality burger for any price! In general all the food was poorly presented. I would like to know the age of the chef! The wine list is completely overpriced. There are no vintage wines here at all and yet the prices are from £17.00 upwards. Service very indifferent and has the feel of a "chain" pub, lots of staff running about like headless chickens from one computerised till to the next. What is the fascination with these tills? In every pub that one goes to now the staff spent more time with the tills then the customers. Summed up this place is lost; trying to be Italian (the menu is in Italian) but without the service or produce or cooking skills required. In short very very overpriced. I fear these tills will be soon empty.
stemginger - 28 Jun 2010 16:28
If you ain't eating then you ain't welcome.
anonymous - 23 May 2010 12:07
Following a swift refurb, this place has reopened as The Arkley Village Inn & Dining - do a Google search for the website. It looks much better inside now, like they've taken a few pages out of a Habitat catalogue, but it's clearly aimed at diners rather than drinkers. There are only a few 'drinking' tables near the well-stocked if pricey bar, and the rest of the place is set out restaurant style.
Menu looks a bit above itself for the area - mostly grills, 'flatbreads' and pastas/salads. Prices are steep - is anyone going to pay £19 for steak or £10 for a burger when you can get the same at the Monken Holt for £10 and £6? Still, on our visit, it was busy with local yummy mummies and lads in smart hoodies trying to impress wannabe WAGs.
This place will undoubtedly pull in the punters for a while, but they'll need to decide if they're a restaurant, a bar/diner or a pub. Does it really need a bouncer? Odd. Prices will need to drop if they want repeat custom. It's better than it was before, but that wasn't difficult, was it?
anonymous - 4 Apr 2010 15:40
This used to be my local and was awful. When Ember took it over it had to be better, and in many ways it is. Recently, the service seems OK and the food bog standard fare. These chains like Ember and PunchTaverns really have to get their act together because having a drink or eating out is now becoming a rarer event for many people. Being adequate just won't do any more. It's more of a place to have a snack with a drink than a pub.
heliopolis - 22 Jul 2009 17:01
I found all of the staff in here to be friendly enough except for one barmaid that I thought was quite abrupt and seriously in need of a customer service refresher course. I thought that the landlady was very friendly and was surprised that she would put up with a member of her staff letting the side down with a surly attitude.

This place is large and bland with little or no atmosphere, which is what I have come to expect from Ember Inns. The Pride was off and the Newman’s Last Lion of Britain was yet to be put on, but Greene King IPA, Bath Ales Golden Hare and Wadworth’s Lily the Pink were all available alongside a standard draught selection and Peroni. The Golden Hare was ok, but I wasn’t overly impressed with the Lily the Pink – Although it is in aid of a breast cancer charity.

It seems to be popular with the lunchtime crowd and with the hospital being so close there is usually a few people dining. The food is pretty basic, but my chicken burger and chips was very reasonably priced. It’s ok to fill a hole, but you do get what you pay for.

There is some terrace seating only slightly set back from the main road out the front and there is also some more seating next to the car park at the side of the pub. All of the tables and chairs are bolted to the floor so you cannot move them around to get more comfortable, a sign of the times I suppose. I was a little surprised that there is no garden as I would have thought it a perfect location for one.

Another strange thing for a pub that seems to rely heavily on dry sales is that no children under the age of 14 are permitted as there are no facilities for them, whatever that means, and children under 18 are only permitted if dining with an adult, which is fair enough.

This place is ok for a couple of swift pints and maybe a spot of lunch if you happen to be stuck visiting someone at the hospital, but I wouldn’t go out of my way and I certainly wouldn’t go here for an evening drink.
Strongers - 19 Jun 2009 09:45
The fact that I've lived two minutes from this place for five years and been in once sums up how inviting it is. It's spacious, bland and I doubt it'll ever be any better. There's a bit of outside seating which seems to down well with smokers, but it's still grim, grim, grim.
anonymous - 6 Jun 2008 02:48
Used to enjoy going to this pub, but for the past year it has gone steadily downhill. Every time I have had a pint of Guinness (yes, just one) I have ended up with a stomach ache. They obviously are not cleaning the taps. Haven't gone back in a while and recently set foot inside, but then had a change of mind and retreated.
Garylynch - 15 May 2008 04:35
Much like a hotel bar, polite decor and very little atmosphere. It's more the sort of place you'd pop to for a quick drink than a night out.
The Wed and Sun quiz used to be very good though I haven't been for some time plus the food isn't bad .
NikiJ - 6 Dec 2006 13:48
After moving to Barnet a couple of years back, we caught wind of the quiz held on Sundays & Wednesdays. When Paul (the incredibly camp, but very funny barman) used to host it, it was a lot of fun, and when the prize rolled-over (on one occasion topping a grand), it used to be mobbed. I remeber having to get there not later than 6pm to guarantee a seat for a 9 start. Paul then, acrimoniously, was booted out, and it was never the same. We went back once, but the new owner who also annouces the quiz, makes it sound like you're at a funeral. The food was never up to too much, but is OK. Beers are normal, and the staff are hit & miss. The quiz is, or was, the life-blood of the Arkley, and it's unlikely to recover.
stwutter - 14 Aug 2006 12:18
Got ID'd by big east german weightlifter type woman before we'd even got to the bar-and we weren't even drinking! Tried to order food as well but waited 20 minutes while evil barlady haraunged a confused old woman-(shouting 'shut up' to her at one point)before leaving for sunnier climes. Avoid like a plauge rat.
ElBurro - 3 Apr 2006 22:02
Fairly bland place, this - and I can't say the Sunday lunch we had in there was the greatest. If you live nearby I'd have to say there are better pubs in the area.
cid - 15 Mar 2005 16:28
This pub is very near where I live and it is a very friendly and efficient pub, with lovely staff and a happy atmosphere
Emma - 23 Feb 2004 08:44
Friendly atmosphere, recently taken over by Ember Inns. Iside a quiet, cosy country pub. Nice for a relaxing quiet night on a Friday or Saturday. Actually anyday! Wednesday and Sunday evenings is the Quiz night. Very popular always full! Not much else to say!
Dan - 31 Jan 2004 22:01

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