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Jun 18, 2010 08:28 PM

So disappointing

We end up there every few months because my husband likes it, but each time we go, I am left feeling like we could have spent the $100 on much better shampooing the carpets or paying the credit card bill.

Tonight was no different. I didn't want to pay $11 for a glass of chardonnay, so I opted for the $6 house brand. It was about as flavorful as dishwater. We split the calamari to start. The breading was salty and bready. It was stuck together in big clumps and there were as many hot peppers and limes as calamari. It was, however, better than the last time when there was a puddle of oil in the bottom of the dish.

I overheard the table beside us being told of the specials. Our server didn't mention at least 2 of the items their server mentioned. The draft beer list was longer at the other table also!

My husband had the mixed grill which had a home made sausage that was interesting. Mild, but with a spicy finish. The tenderloin was excellent, and he enjoyed the scallops.

I had a Caesar salad with grilled chicken. The chicken was cut very thin so the ends were overcooked and dry. The dressing was absolutely tasteless except for the asiago. There were no anchovies although the menu said they had them. The server didn't mention them so I assumed anchovies would be on the salad unless I requested not to have them.

Our server was pleasant, but disappeared for long periods of time. We sat for 15 minutes after we finished the meal and another 15 until she returned our credit card.

Has anyone been to Three Chimneys lately? It used to be so good about 5 years ago. We were always pleased with the food, service, quality, and value. Lately, it's hit or miss; heavy on the miss....

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  1. You seem to have forgotten a few details like city, state and name of the restaurant. Other than that, good review.

    1 Reply
    1. re: hicow

      The name does appear in the last paragraph - other than that, it's a cliff-hanger.

    2. Yes, it is strange we have to dig for the pertinent info, but everyone has their won style of writing reviews. I've never been to the Three Chimneys as I've heard a lot of what you've said before from others. There are not a lot of places in the Dover/Durham area where the service has been professional and on top of things. Portsmouth is also hit or miss with regards to service. Three Chimneys is affiliated (accepts) the FIRA card and it's been my observation that most places that do are not great.

      5 Replies
      1. re: bewley

        Sorry about the incomplete post. I rarely post here, and obviously missed a few pertinent details.

        1. re: susan jr

          No, it's a very good post.

          I'm sorry, I was actually upset that you confirmed what I had already heard about the place and that indicates to me that most of the "popular" places in the area are not so good. Take, for example Newick's or the Orchard Street Chop Shop or Acorns (now closed) or Blue Latitudes . . . they're all popular, but not quite up to snuff. Given that you are in the business, is there any place in the area you like?

          Orchard Street Chop Shop
          1 Orchard St, Dover, NH 03820

          Blue Latitudes
          100 Main St Ste 102, Dover, NH 03820

          1. re: bewley

            I am in the business, but I own a cafe that serves lunch and we also cater. It hardly makes me an expert on casual fine dining, but I know what I like. Service is always the deal breaker for me. If that's good, the food can be a little less than wonderful, but if the service isn't great and the food isn't either, I'm not happy!

            We had a really good Asian meal at Mei Wei in Durham recently. The food was fresh, presented nicely, and the server was attentive and professional.

            Dante's in Barrington is very good lately. I like their Chicken Parma which isn't the breaded, fried, cheesey, gloppy mess that you find in most Italian restaruants. We also like the Calamari there; the dipping sauce is good enough to drink. I believe it may have a balsamic base, maybe even a reduction. They make much of their own pasta, but the rolls come straight from the Market Basket up the road- rather a let down.

            We often go to the Lazy Lion in Deerfield as it is close to home, the waitresses know us, and their food is consistently good. Their winter menu has a very good curry, but it's gone until the fall. The fish and chips is delicious and huge! The Jim Beam is good there too. Oh wait; it's good everywhere....! The chef used to be a waiter there and bought the business a couple of years ago with his brother. He has come a long way! He loves food and you can tell.

            Lazy Lion Cafe
            4 North Rd, Deerfield, NH 03037

            1. re: susan jr

              Will definitely try Mei Wei.

              I've tried Dante's on several occasions and though I have friends that love the place, I think they actually like Dante's gregarious personality more than his subpar food or service.

              The Lazy Lion also looks nice, but a bit too far out of my range.

              Lazy Lion Cafe
              4 North Rd, Deerfield, NH 03037

              1. re: bewley

                Bewley, give Dantes another chance. I know what you mean because for years, I really hated the place. I have a thing with servers calling me hon, but that's another rant.... My friend loves their lasagna, but I've never tried it. My husband always has something with seafood and is always happy, and I've had and loved the chix parm (as I mentioned before) and the olio (you know what I mean). And the caesar salad is worlds above the one at 3 chimneys!