Service has gone downhill! Got salads before water ever came. Waitress badmouthed owner and complained of working conditions. Had some kind of sauce on her clothing and stained my blouse, then insinuated that I got sauce on HER (not a sauce served at our table). Table was sticky, servers had dirty appearance. Servers were SLOW. At my table, a porkchop was too bloody to eat. Food was bland, typical, and overpriced. My extended family and I will not return here.
We were there for Bardstown Colonial Living History event. As reenactors, we loved the atmosphere and ambiance of being in the dim lit tavern, having drinkies, singing songs and having a good meal. We had heard from the previous night (Friday) that the service was terrible and wait time to get noticed was around 45 minutes. We chanced it anyway as a group, in the sake of fun, on Saturday. A young male waiter took our order for drinks, but was never seen again for the rest of the night...without even delivering the said ordered drinks! The young girl that apparently took his place, was not friendly at all. She was rarely seen and decided to leave upon taking the money for the check without returning any change. Believe me, she was not, by no means, worth the $8 tip she ran off with!!! When a whole group of people notice that NONE of the wait staff knew how to smile or even have a friendly personality, you have to know it wasn't a pleasant visit. If we hadn't have had such a good time hanging out with friends and singing, the night would've been terrible. The food was really good, and pricing wasn't too bad.
For this to be a well known historic mark, they really need to raise the bar! Either the Talbott Tavern people have no internet, they don't bother to look up online reviews, or they just don't care. This could be a much, much better experience if they focus on friendly service.
if you don't mind spending an hour between being seated and being served your sandwich, this is a fine place to eat. There were more servers and cooks than patrons but somehow service was still abysmal. Sandwiches weren't bad but not sure if that was due to the extreme hunger after the literally hour-long wait (OK, only 45 minutes, once we'd placed our order).
After reading the reviews posted here, we were wondering if we had made a mistake by making reservations there. But we had a wonderful time! We had supper there Sat. night, and lunch Sun. Both were excellent! The service was very good too!
The band is loud (but good) Sat. night. We joined them for a while, then went upstairs and slept well.
If you like history I highly recommend visiting the tavern. We are looking foward to going back again!
i liked the old style of the place that's orginal, but once we got inside it changed our minds. we had to wait 40 minutes to be seated then another 20 minutes for our fried green tomatoes we heard they were excellent but by the time we got them we were out of the mood to eat them our food was their.so we asked if a couple of ladies was working that day that we knew a sever said yes we asked to see them they said they no longer work there so we left. we won't be back
Due to all we had read about this establishment, perhaps our expectations were too high, but this restaurant was a big disappointment on our visit this past weekend.
We were seated in about five minutes and had a very attentive waiter. The atmosphere is great (although we wished someone had lit the fire in the fireplace as it was cold in the dining room).
Our biggest complaint was with what we had gone there for: the food. The Old Talbott's web site really emphasizes their "Southern Cooking" and portions. We both had catfish, which came with a baked potato and cole slaw, and there was a salad beforehand. The salad conisisted of a piece of iceberg lettuce, a cherry tomato (Mike's was semi rotten), and a very thin slice of cucumber.
About ten minutes after the salad, the waiter brought a small basket of biscuts and corn bread (two incredibly small pieces) to our table. Again, nothing more than average; we both thought the biscuts tasted like something frozen and then thawed and baked.
About twenty minutes after sitting down, we got our meal. There was one medium size piece of catfish, a decent size potato, and a small PLASTIC ramikin of cole slaw. Although the fish was very good, piping hot and crisp, we had both expected a generous portion (ie at least TWO pieces!) of the fish. The baked potato was very good (but then, that is pretty hard to mess up), although there was no butter or sour cream offered. The slaw was like mush and had no taste, and we both thought the PLASTIC dish it came in really did not go with all the emphasis put on this place being so historic (the place could surely afford glass dishes or just dump the slaw on the plate).
Each entree was 16.95. We don't mind paying for something if it is worth it, but we added up what the real cost of a slight piece of fish, a potato, and a tablespoon of slaw would cost, and really felt taken advantage of by the restaurant.
Although the deserts looked good on the menu, due to our meal being so bland, we did not partake.
Our advice would be to visit the place for the historical value (there is a gift shop which offers a good view of the dining room and bar) but skip the meal.
My family has been visiting the Old Talbott Tavern for more than 40 years, and I have enjoyed so many meals there. Two years ago, my husband and I had a terrible dinner there before we attended the Bourbon Festival and decided not to return. Then my sister came to Lexington for a visit and wanted to tour "Federal Hill." Well, the tavern was still in business so I thought it must have improved in two years! Boy, was I wrong! It ranks as one of the worst meals that either of us had ever eaten. It took 20 minutes to order and another 30 to get served by a waiter with a terrible attitude. The food was horrible. The fruit on my chicken salad plate was old and rancid. They served my sister someone else's lunch. Next they gave her a type of salad she didn't order either. She gave up and just ate it so we could get out of there. The silverware was dirty and the butter plates were filthy! What a horrible disappointment. Maybe some day new owners will bring back the place to its glorious past. Until then, we won't go back and don't suggest anyone else go either.
My family and I found the Talbott while on a short vacation in Bardstown. After a very educational guided tour while our luch was being prepared, we had the most mouth-watering fried chicken that I have ever come by. If you want history at your fingertips, you have to go to the Talbott. We go every time we are in town!!! See you in about two weeks!!!
Although we did not have dinner in the dining room, we spent several hours in the Bourbon Bar and Debbie was one of the best bartenders I have ever met! She taught us everything she knew about bourbon, and even rounded up some unique glasses to take home with us! We will return!
We were very diappointed with the service and quality in the restaurant and the hotel. When we checked in at 7, no one mentioned that the restaurant and bar closed at 8. We went down at 8, waited 15 minutes for the hostess to seat us, then sat at our table with no one else acknowledging us for over 20 minutes. It was 8:45 before we ordered. The waitstaff VERY loudly went about cleaning up the tables around us while we ate (to hurry us along?).
The Kentucky Hot Brown was very good, as was the bread pudding dessert. The bartender very rudely told us the bar was closed when we tried to go there after dinner (there were people inside drinking, so we thought it was open). In the morning, the "continental" breakfast consisted of mini boxes of cold cereal and microwaved convenience-store danish. They had turned on a hot plate, but neglected to put the coffee pot on it. No one greeted us at breakfast, despite several people working in the lobby.
We stayed in the Lincoln Suite -- no one had turned on the AC on this very hot day, so it was about 90 degrees when we got inside -- the windows do not open, so it took several hours for the room to cool off. The tub had a really gritty feel -- not pleasant when taking a bath! I tried to use the iron on a shirt and found that it had some kind of plastic "gunk" melted all over it. Our room was in the front of the hotel and the street below was very busy -- bright lights and traffic noise kept us up.
Pros: food was tasty, location was great, parking was easy.
Cons: SERVICE -- at best, the service was indifferent. At worst, it was down-right rude.
We will not return and will strongly recommend no one else visits.
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