Respond to Review of The Olive Branch
Review: PROS: A pleasant restaurant in picturesque Ludlow with attentive staff boasts menu options for most dietary requirements using fresh & often local produce, including separate sections for both vegetarian & vegan dishes. Evening menu for our visit - starters of homemade houmous & pitta bread or pea-&-bean soup of the day. Mains: Jamaican Sweet Potato Casserole; Red Lentil and Cashew Nut Bake; Red Pepper stuffed with Quinoa, Mint, Apricots & Courgettes served with a Butternut & Red Pepper Sauce; or a salad - all served with stir fried veg & potatoes. Three vegan cakes were available: spiced apple, apricot flapjack & chocolate cake; no soya cream/ice-cream/custard or soya milk on offer. The vegan food itself was tasty & beautifully presented, although small portions & medium to expensive price range. CONS: We had high expectations after such care for catering for different dietary needs was mentioned on their website, outside board & menu. However, none of the three staff on duty had any clue about veganism & delivered non-vegan food to us for every course! Distressing enough for ethical vegans, this is extremely dangerous for those with allergies, so if you wish to risk eating here please double-check at every stage of your meal, as we did. After checking the soup of the day was vegan & ordering from the vegan menu: - Complimentary covers of bread & olives arrived with obvious butter. On asking if the bread was vegan, we were told no & apologised to for giving us food we couldn't eat. - The kitchen had confirmed soup was fine; it was served without the advertised crusty roll (replacement pitta would have been nice). - Main course looked lovely, with Dauphinoise potatoes served in a separate dish. Initial bite tasted cheesy - we checked & were told it was dairy cheese. Replacement wild rice was delivered promptly but my comment on how dangerous/upsetting this was met with no comprehension. - A neighbouring diner came over to apologise for poor service; we thought she might have been the owner but she didn't assist the staff & the mistakes continued. - Dessert; we asked which were vegan & were told three interesting cakes. Upon asking if there was anything to accompany them, we were offered cream, custard or ice cream. To double-check, we asked they confirm these were all vegan: they were all dairy. - At the end of the meal, our bill came with two wrapped chocolates. These were non vegan too. Nice food but uncomfortable experience, so cannot recommend.
Posted by oliveoil on Monday, February 25, 2013