Style Tuesday: Churchill’s Pub in Westboro – New Restaurant Review

June 21, 2011 at 2:43 am 8 comments

What does a restaurant review have to do with style? I don’t know, but this is what you’re getting today.

Friday night the kids and I decided to take Derek to Churchill’s Pub, the newest joint to hit the Richmond Road strip in Westboro, for an early Father’s Day celebration. We usually eat out on Friday nights and we were excited to have a new place to go within walking distance.

We walked in and did a quick scan of the menu. Yes – they have a small kids’ menu! This looked promising as a new regular addition to our rotation.

We were taken through a contemporary pub (with way too many light fixtures – industrial mixed with tudor mixed with Victorian –  yikes!) and seated at a large booth in the back. And it all went downhill…

Derek started shifting in his seat. The booths are hardwood, seat and back, and it was hard to get comfortable.

We ordered:

Derek: Steak of the Day – $23

Lil D: Grilled Cheese and Fries (Kids’ Menu) – $6.50

Lil C: Pasta with Tomato Sauce on the side (Kids’ Menu) – $6.50

Me: Asian Beef Salad with beef on a separate dish (for the kids). – approx $15

Drinks: Draft beer, club soda, chocolate milk, apple juice.

Lil D’s grilled cheese arrived first, about 5-7 minutes before the rest of us got our food. It was grilled cheese on garlic bread and fresh-cut fries. He took one bite and then ate the fries. He was not interested in the garlic.

My salad arrived with the beef on top. I sent it back. Thankfully, I think they removed the lettuce that was touching the beef because I didn’t taste any remnants. My salad, and especially the dressing was otherwise good.

Derek ate his steak smothered in a creamy-looking chile sauce, mashed potatoes and butter-drenched veggies and proclaimed them passable, but after much probing, would not put them into the “good” category.

Lil C took a bite of his pasta, but then proceeded to eat Lil D’s fries, which incidentally were very good, and nothing else.

Now, let me say that the fact that the kids didn’t eat their meals is not necessarily a reflection on the restaurant. Unfortunately, in this case it was. When the server asked if “everything was to our taste”, I told her that garlic bread on a kids’ grilled cheese is unusual, and probably should at the very least be marked on the menu. She wholeheartedly agreed. “Most kids don’t like garlic”, she said.

I asked her to pack up the untouched beef from my salad and Lil C’s pasta.

She brought the styrofoam container (which ended up untouched in our garbage today) and the check and was surprised that the kids’ drinks were not included in the kids’ meal price. I was also surprised that no one apologized or commented or maybe even credited us for the uneaten garlic bread grilled cheese.

Honestly, the worst part of this meal was the price. And this is rarely my sticking point. I am usually the first one to say that I will take the more expensive quality over the more affordable quantity. However, $85 including tip for an average (and I’m being generous) Friday night neighbourhood family dinner with one beer and 2 kids’ meals is too much. And based on the quality of the food and service, I’m thinking it’s not going into our weekday lunch or Saturday night adult rotation anytime soon.

We’ll continue with our other local Friday night summer walking-distance favourites including The Works, Fratelli, The Corner Bar and Grill, and the Cafe at Westboro Beach for now. I saw a sign for the Clocktower coming fall 2011. Hope the food holds some promise. Anyone eaten at the Bank Street location? I know many of you have quenched your thirsts there.


Entry filed under: Otown, Style. Tags: , , , , .

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8 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Julie Drury  |  June 21, 2011 at 10:56 am

    I’ve heard similar comments about Churchill’s. I haven’t been yet. Based on your post, and other reviews, I don’t think I’ll be there anytime soon.

    Clocktower is great! So excited for their opening and anticipating a nice outdoor patio space. Patio eating is sorely missing in Westboro.

    Have you tried The Diner on Wellington? Supposed to be very kid friendly and good food.

    • 2. Liisa at Fit for a Kid  |  June 21, 2011 at 1:47 pm

      Hey Julie – So good to hear about the Clocktower. I’ll look forward to the patio.

      We often go to The Diner on Wellington for dinner or brunch. It is great for kids and they have really nice big salads (and are always willing to make substitutions). It’s just not within a 7 minute walk from our place. That’s why I didn’t include it in my little list.

  • 3. Molly  |  June 21, 2011 at 2:34 pm

    Too bad about your experience at Churchill’s…we’ve been there 3 times and have loved it each visit…a bit expensive, so I figure it won’t be a weekly place for us. But the food has always been delicious and the service is great.

    • 4. Liisa at Fit for a Kid  |  June 23, 2011 at 3:54 pm

      Molly, Just wondering what you guys ordered (in the unlikely event that I find myself back there)…

  • 5. Stefania (Ingredients for Life)  |  June 23, 2011 at 2:35 pm

    That is a steep price for a family meal that wasn’t enjoyable. I’ve had Sunday lunch at the Clocktower in the market and thought it was great. It’s been years since I’ve been to the one on Bank St. Nice to see Ottawa-area pubs (Clocktower, Royal Oak, etc) expanding to other parts of the city.

    • 6. Liisa at Fit for a Kid  |  June 23, 2011 at 3:53 pm

      I’m so glad to hear the Clocktower is decent. I just walked by the building site and it looks like it’s going to have a great front patio.

  • 7. Liisa at Fit for a Kid  |  September 28, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    A note on this post – I have recently heard better things about Churchill’s. In fact, I heard the kids’ menu has changed. However, my children are huge on first impressions and I think it’s going to be a hard sell to get them back in that place.

  • […] Friday I had dinner at Churchill’s again. I had promised that I would give it a second chance, and a neighbour’s birthday gathering was planned there – perfect […]


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