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Old 09-16-2018, 07:20 PM   #1
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Default Pickering House Barn Dinner

We were excited to see the renovation of the Pickering House in Wolfeboro, and tried one of the family-style barn dinners recently. Interesting venue, but overall somewhat disappointing. In our party of 6, everyone agreed the food was mixed: good salad, vegetables & eggplant dish; the chicken was dry, dessert was excellent. The biggest issue was portion control and perhaps 'early kinks to work out' ... eg: for our table of 8 ppl, the server brought 5 pieces of chicken, which created some awkward "you take it, no you take it" with others at our table. When we asked the server, she said "I don't know that's how it comes". Everyone in our group left feeling hungry and feeling it was too expensive for that. Hope they work out the early kinks, as it seems to have real potential.
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Old 09-16-2018, 08:22 PM   #2
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Default Pickering House Barn Dinner

Several years ago, when the Wolfeboro Inn re-opened after undergoing substantial renovations and upgrades, the dining service was, frankly, a disaster on all fronts. The management of the Inn started reading this Forum, and paying attention to the posts about the Inn, and, within a reasonable time, there was significant improvement to the whole operation.

I guess I would humbly say, I hope the management of Pickering House Inn is following comments on this Forum. This is not to say that this Forum is 'the' answer, but it is certainly a source to pay attention to.

I wish the Inn the very best, it is an asset to Wolfeboro.
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Old 09-16-2018, 08:57 PM   #3
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Is their Restaurant open to those who are not staying there overnight?

I had heard they had a bar but would not serve the public (just for the registered guests).

By the way, I fully support the Pickering House. I had heard that a Dollar Store was going to be put in that location had it not been restored by the present owner.
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Old 09-16-2018, 09:24 PM   #4
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When you say “5 pieces of chicken” what do you mean? A wing, a thigh, a breast, a drumstick and a whatever...or was it 5 chicken footballs (like they serve at weddings and such?)
Be that as it may, I would have insisted that there should have been 8 “pieces of chicken” one for each diner. Either that or refund our money and we all walk out.
“That’s the way it comes” doesn’t cut the mustard with me.
That service sounds utterly ridiculous.
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Old 09-16-2018, 10:45 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Eagle54 View Post
We were excited to see the renovation of the Pickering House in Wolfeboro, and tried one of the family-style barn dinners recently. Interesting venue, but overall somewhat disappointing. In our party of 6, everyone agreed the food was mixed: good salad, vegetables & eggplant dish; the chicken was dry, dessert was excellent. The biggest issue was portion control and perhaps 'early kinks to work out' ... eg: for our table of 8 ppl, the server brought 5 pieces of chicken, which created some awkward "you take it, no you take it" with others at our table. When we asked the server, she said "I don't know that's how it comes". Everyone in our group left feeling hungry and feeling it was too expensive for that. Hope they work out the early kinks, as it seems to have real potential.
Did you have a "party of 6" with a "table of 8 ppl" ?
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Old 09-16-2018, 11:03 PM   #6
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The room (barn) was setup with long tables, approx 24 ppl per long table; which seemed to be (3) tables for 8 ppl placed end-to-end. We were a group of 6, and it wasn't clear to anyone when servers brought out platters of food who they were intended for ... we asked and the server said the platters were for 8 ppl, which we wouldn't have known unless we asked, so apparently we were supposed to know that the platter of 5 pieces of chicken were to be shared with our group of 6 and the next 2 people along our table. The (5) pieces of chicken were each about a normal serving for 1 person, so definitely not enough for 8 ppl. The chef came around after the dinner and we expressed our concerns and she said "we had plenty of chicken, do you want some to take home?" which wasn't interesting since the chicken was already dry, so having some at home as leftovers wasn't appealing. If there had been plenty of chicken, a more experienced wait staff would have brought more out when we first asked if 5 pieces were supposed to be split among 8 ppl. Hope these issues are addressed and it becomes a real asset to Wolfeboro.
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Old 09-17-2018, 05:34 AM   #7
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The minimum for family style should be enough that there's still some left after everyone has been served. There's really no reason to serve family style if the serving is 1:1 or, in this case, less. Sounds absurd to me.

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Old 09-17-2018, 08:04 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Eagle54 View Post
The room (barn) was setup with long tables, approx 24 ppl per long table; which seemed to be (3) tables for 8 ppl placed end-to-end. We were a group of 6, and it wasn't clear to anyone when servers brought out platters of food who they were intended for ... we asked and the server said the platters were for 8 ppl, which we wouldn't have known unless we asked, so apparently we were supposed to know that the platter of 5 pieces of chicken were to be shared with our group of 6 and the next 2 people along our table. The (5) pieces of chicken were each about a normal serving for 1 person, so definitely not enough for 8 ppl. The chef came around after the dinner and we expressed our concerns and she said "we had plenty of chicken, do you want some to take home?" which wasn't interesting since the chicken was already dry, so having some at home as leftovers wasn't appealing. If there had been plenty of chicken, a more experienced wait staff would have brought more out when we first asked if 5 pieces were supposed to be split among 8 ppl. Hope these issues are addressed and it becomes a real asset to Wolfeboro.
Thanks for the clarification.
I guess they have to cut corners somehow to pay for the renovation of the Big Yellow House..but chicken??
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Old 09-18-2018, 04:11 PM   #9
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Default Family Style Super

Their web site clearly outlines this is a family style supper. It is not a restaurant but they do hold monthly supers. Check their website for details. If I were the diner I would have requested the server bring more chicken. I bet the kitchen had the right plan but all it takes is one new server who guesses rather than asks when questions are asked. I look forward to more reviews as the year goes on.
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Old 09-18-2018, 05:28 PM   #10
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I’d still like to know what “the chicken” was? Chicken Footballs stuffed with something or a mix of chicken parts? Because if I was eating there and got stuck with a WING I would cry “FOWL”
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Old 09-18-2018, 06:04 PM   #11
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I’d still like to know what “the chicken” was? Chicken Footballs stuffed with something or a mix of chicken parts? Because if I was eating there and got stuck with a WING I would cry “FOWL”
It was (5) pieces of boneless chicken, probably a small half-breast, about the size of a cutlet; not a big serving for 1 person, but definitely not big enough for two people.
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Old 09-18-2018, 06:07 PM   #12
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Their web site clearly outlines this is a family style supper. It is not a restaurant but they do hold monthly supers. Check their website for details. If I were the diner I would have requested the server bring more chicken. I bet the kitchen had the right plan but all it takes is one new server who guesses rather than asks when questions are asked. I look forward to more reviews as the year goes on.
Absolutely they clearly advertised it as family-style, so we had no issue with that; the issue was the portion sizes, and the family-style made it harder to know how many people each platter of food was intended to serve. We actually asked two different servers, the first said 'thats how it comes for 8 ppl', when we asked another server, she said "I don't think there is any more chicken"
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Old 09-18-2018, 06:16 PM   #13
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I admire your restraint. I'd've flipped that table over.

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Old 09-18-2018, 07:32 PM   #14
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i admire your restraint. I'd've flipped that table over.

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LMAO! Food fight!!
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Old 09-18-2018, 07:55 PM   #15
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The menu for the feast states that chicken is the only meat served. Why wouldn't there be at least enough for everyone to have one piece??
For $65.00 nobody should have left hungry.

Here is what the menu states:
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Old 09-18-2018, 08:30 PM   #16
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$65?! Add $7 tax and tip and you're at just under $90. Scratch my table-flipping comment, I'd have broken something. For $90, you should've gotten a whole chicken.

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Old 09-18-2018, 09:10 PM   #17
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$65?! Add $7 tax and tip and you're at just under $90. Scratch my table-flipping comment, I'd have broken something. For $90, you should've gotten a whole chicken.

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I’m with you for that price I could have gotten a huge rib eye with an app and sides at “O”. Crazy


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Old 09-18-2018, 09:36 PM   #18
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Beyond the chicken, the menu looks like it offered many other components. How where they? I’m not surprised the server lacked the basic senses to resolve the chicken issue. This isn’t a restaurant with regular service periods, the server was probably a field hand or other farm team member that they recruited to serve. If you want “fine”service go to a tried and true restaurant, this sounds more like a unique experience to be enjoyed for what it is.


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Old 09-18-2018, 09:43 PM   #19
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$65?! Add $7 tax and tip and you're at just under $90. Scratch my table-flipping comment, I'd have broken something. For $90, you should've gotten a whole chicken.

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NH has a 9% meal tax.
Add a few drinks & you can kiss a C-note goodbye.
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Old 09-18-2018, 10:40 PM   #20
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Beyond the chicken, the menu looks like it offered many other components. How where they? I’m not surprised the server lacked the basic senses to resolve the chicken issue. This isn’t a restaurant with regular service periods, the server was probably a field hand or other farm team member that they recruited to serve. If you want “fine”service go to a tried and true restaurant, this sounds more like a unique experience to be enjoyed for what it is.


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The original poster said the salad and veggies were good. But the chicken, Oivay!
The point being “everyone left hungry” is not a good experience. Period. Especially for $90 bucks a pop!
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Old 09-19-2018, 07:35 AM   #21
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The rooms are $450. a night with a two night minimum stay.
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Old 09-19-2018, 09:13 AM   #22
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The rooms are $450. a night with a two night minimum stay.
Wow! A rip-off all around then...
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Old 09-19-2018, 12:59 PM   #23
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I think that's pretty steep, Hill!!
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Old 09-19-2018, 02:49 PM   #24
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I think that's pretty steep, Hill!!
Yes, very steep! Those are NYC prices!
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Old 09-19-2018, 03:54 PM   #25
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Default Bed and Breakfast Upscale

I went on their open house tour just before they opened. The bedrooms are much better than any NYC Manhatten hotel at the same price. 5 star all the way. It is obvious that they are not catering to the budget minded traveler. I checked out their new website that highlights all the of room features. Prices will very depending on time of year.
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Old 09-19-2018, 05:17 PM   #26
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They did have the prices on there. I guess they decided it wasn't a good idea? There was a lot of talk about the prices.
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Old 09-19-2018, 05:42 PM   #27
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Default Pickering House prices

I think it was Confucius, no, wait, maybe Yogi Berra, well, one of those philosopher-types, who summed it all up, "If you have to ask, you can't afford it".
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Old 09-19-2018, 06:13 PM   #28
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I guess they have to cut corners somehow to pay for the renovation of the Big Yellow House..but chicken??
Was that sarcasm or just an asinine statement?
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Old 09-19-2018, 06:43 PM   #29
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I think you are right, camp guy. I know there was a lot of local talk as I heard it from a lot of people before I looked myself. So silence is golden.
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Old 09-20-2018, 06:01 PM   #30
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Clearly they are out of 99.9 % of the local populations league !
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Old 09-20-2018, 07:19 PM   #31
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Default Pickering house barn dinner

Hey !, barefootbay, some of us locals have two nickels to rub together, but, maybe only two nickels.
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Old 09-20-2018, 07:24 PM   #32
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Hey !, barefootbay, some of us locals have two nickels to rub together, but, maybe only two nickels.
LOL. I think it is surprising how many local people have money. But there are also a lot who don't.
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Old 09-20-2018, 07:49 PM   #33
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Default Wish them luck and I think they will do just fine

It's a great idea to have one really super place in Wolfeboro, there are enough really wealthy people who will enjoy the beautiful yellow house and not even feel the price point. I am thankful it was renovated. And the Yum yum shop . . . lots of money spent to improve some trashy properties. Good.
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Old 09-20-2018, 07:49 PM   #34
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If you like Prime Beef Tenderloin with whipped blue cheese butter, than this is the event for you,
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Old 09-21-2018, 07:58 AM   #35
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Clearly they are out of 99.9 % of the local populations league !
Yes, but if you are local, why would you stay there?
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Old 09-21-2018, 11:14 AM   #36
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Yes, but if you are local, why would you stay there?
Exactly!
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Old 09-21-2018, 09:24 PM   #37
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And why would you pay nearly $100.00 a pop for dinner which from past reviews was nothing to write home about.
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Old 09-21-2018, 11:07 PM   #38
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And why would you pay nearly $100.00 a pop for dinner which from past reviews was nothing to write home about.
For a party of 2 it would be $194 with tax..add a 20% tip and the bill would be $233.
Most people have a few drinks before and during eating which would bring the bill up a little higher.
I'm glad that there are locals who can afford these events and wish the newly renovated yellow house much success.
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Old 09-22-2018, 02:56 PM   #39
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And why would you pay nearly $100.00 a pop for dinner which from past reviews was nothing to write home about.
Agree, that's the issue ... if it was a fantastic dinner (food, service, ambience) maybe it would be worth it, but if it's mediocre, that is expensive.
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