Table Table Balkerne Gate, Colchester
Pub - Address: Ipswich Road, Colchester CO4 9WP
1 reviews from the community
Review of "Table Table Balkerne Gate, Colchester"
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Address: Balkerne Gate Table Table
Telephone: 01206 852 932Table Table Balkerne Gate, Colchester is located just south of the interchange between the A12 (heading north east to Ipswich) and the A120 (heading east to Harwich). It is 3.6 miles north east of Colchester town centre.
To place it in a broader context, Table Table Balkerne Gate, Colchester is 43.3 miles north east of Southend-on-Sea, 73.7 miles east of Luton, 49.9 miles south east of Cambridge and 16.7 miles west of Harwich.
Table Table is a brand within the Whitbread PLC restaurant family. Whitbread traces its origins back to 1742, when Samuel Whitbread and his partners, Godfrey and Thomas Shewell, bought a brewery and a brewhouse in London. As the business expanded, first Godfrey and then Thomas Shewell were bought out by Samuel Whitbread. By the 1780s Whitbread owned the largest brewery in the world. In 1799, under the management of Whitbread’s son, also Samuel, the company became Whitbread & Co Ltd. By 1971, the output of the brand made it Britain’s third largest brewer.In 1974 Whitbread set up the Beefeater chain of restaurants, originally to rival Berni Inns. This was followed in 1979 by the opening of the first Brewers Fayre restaurant. 1987 saw the establishment of Travel Inn to compete with Travelodge. When the Beefeater brand was flagging in the 1990s, Whitbread looked at other options, one of which was to convert a large number of Beefeater restaurants to “Out and Out”. In 2001 Whitbread sold all its breweries and brewing interests. After buying Premier Lodge in 2004, Whitbread merged its two budget hotel brands into Premier Travel Inn, which was then shortened to what we now know as Premier Inn.
After the “Out and Out” branding proved to be unsuccessful and restaurants reverted to the Beefeater brand, Whitbread had a rethink on branding. The Table Table brand was started in 2006, but was not named until 2008. Most Table Table restaurants are converted Brewers Fayres, changed over when Brewers Fayre was in decline. During the recession (2009/2010) expansion of Table Table slowed, but since then it has expanded. In 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016, Table Table was the best performing restaurant brand for Whitbread. Since the successful relaunch of the Brewers Fayre brand, the conversion of Brewers Fayre restaurants to Table Table has ceased, with both brands expanding on new sites.Most Table Table restaurants are located next to Premier Inns, as in the case of Table Table Balkerne Gate, Colchester. I would place it slightly above the Brewers Fayre brand in terms of service, as orders are taken at the table rather than at the bar and payment taken at the end of the meal instead of at the point of ordering. I tend to think that the menu and prices overall reflect this.
The first time we came across a Table Table restaurant was when we stayed at a Premier Inn in Southend-on-Sea around 3 years ago. After a long drive we needed a meal and a Table Table restaurant was conveniently located next door. There were offers available, so we dined there again on our return journey a week later and signed up to the Tasty Rewards Club.Table Table Balkerne Gate, Colchester takes its name from the 1st century Roman gateway in Colchester, said to be the largest surviving gateway in Roman Britain. It was where the Roman road from Londinium crossed the town wall into Colchester (Camulodonum).
As we were planning on visiting Table Table Balkerne Gate, Colchester on a Saturday lunch time in late June, my husband rang earlier in the day to book a table for midday. He found the response on the phone slightly abrupt.
Taking the Ipswich Road into Colchester from the A12/A120, we soon spotted the restaurant with the Table Table branding on the right of the road. There was plenty of parking in front of the restaurant and behind, although we were slightly surprised to have to purchase a parking ticket for £1, which, when we read further, could be refunded against any purchases in the restaurant.The restaurant was set on a slightly higher level than the car park with a retaining brick wall topped with metal railings. The main entrance way had a tall lamp on each side. The restaurant building was mainly a low-rise brick construction with pitched, tiled roofs. Most windows were white wood framed with small glass panes and top or large side openers.
The building was higher over the entrance, where it rose to two storeys, with steep pitched, angled roofs. The frontage was covered in wood, painted green and with the recognisable Table Table logo on it. Set slightly further back, the Balkerne Gate name was on the brick wall of a higher part of the building behind.To the right of the restaurant there was an outside dining area with wooden picnic benches and tables and chairs.
A Premier Inn of a brick built, gable roofed 3 storey construction was located behind the restaurant, with further parking behind it.
As we entered Table Table Balkerne Gate, Colchester we noticed an oak wood bar facing us. Reception for the Premier Inn was round the corner to the left and there was a welcome desk for the restaurant on the right. The flooring of the restaurant was of multi-coloured large tiles in various sections, with carpet where the dining tables were. The seats were high backed and covered in a deep/dull red coloured material with padded backs, which proved to be comfortable. The carpet was in a blue square pattern with orange and yellow. Square tables were supported on a central plinth and some were well worn.The dining area was tastefully split into sections with wooden shelved partitions. Assorted good quality vases decorated the shelves. There was also some open brickwork. The wooden framed multi panelled windows had brown drop down blinds. There was a green and brown flecked wall covering and sage curtains and below the rail half the wall was painted a mustard colour. The restaurant had a homely feel to it and, at midday, was relatively quiet. In the corner of the area we sat in, there was a glass fronted electric fake fire with racks of logs by the side, a little redundant in the summer, but a welcome addition in the winter months. On either side of the fire there was a serving tray with a collapsible stand, which we saw in use while we were there.
Generally I would describe the restaurant as being well maintained, but the Ladies toilets let it down. Although the tiles and floor had modern tiles, the other fixtures and fittings were dated. There were only two cubicles, the area was not well cleaned and there was paper debris on the floor. This was especially disappointing as we were there early at lunchtime and not at the end of a busy day.
We were greeted when we arrived at Table Table Balkerne Gate, Colchester in a friendly manner and shown to a table by a window, looking out over the front of the restaurant. We ordered tap water for the table, as we were both driving. Our food order was taken at the table. I ordered a BBQ platter and my husband had a Chicken Makhani Curry. Our food took 26 minutes to be served, which I was happy with, as it seemed a reasonable time to cook the ingredients. I’m sometimes a little wary of food that appears very quickly, especially in a quiet restaurant. In this case as well my meal choice was not exactly a quick reheat in the microwave job!
Our server was friendly, without being over intrusive, a balance which can be hard to strike. She was especially helpful when we enquired about using a voucher for dessert and overall I felt we received good service.
The BBQ platter should have cost £16.99. I paid nothing because I had received a voucher for a free main meal for my birthday by email, due to my membership of the Tasty Rewards Club run by Table Table.The Chicken Makhani Curry was £8.99.
The Caramel popcorn sundae should have been £5.49, but we got it free due to my husband’s membership of the Tasty Rewards Club. He had received a voucher for a free starter or dessert, because of my birthday.Had we paid full price, overall I think the prices represent average value for this kind of restaurant. The clincher for us, were the vouchers. Instead of a total bill of £31.47, we paid just £8.99.
I would thoroughly recommend joining the Tasty Rewards Club even if, like us, you don’t live near a Table Table restaurant. Members are sent a voucher for a free main meal on their birthday and vouchers for a free starter or dessert around the time of any family or friends’ birthdays if they have noted dates on their membership application.
When joining the Tasty Rewards Club it’s a good idea to put as many family and friends’ birthdays down as possible to maximise the voucher potential.If you sign up for email alerts on Whitbread sites, you tend to receive discount offers throughout the year. I have had several recently for 40% off meals at Beefeater and Brewers Fayre restaurants.
When you are travelling in an unfamiliar area and know you will need a meal it’s well worth doing a little internet research to see if you can use your vouchers en route or near where you will be staying. This was how we found Table Table Balkerne Gate, Colchester.
We had a good meal experience at Table Table Balkerne Gate, Colchester. The atmosphere and setting were pleasant, service was good and the food was good quality.Would I recommend? Yes.
Would I return? Yes. (Especially if I had vouchers to use).Thanks for reading.
Product Information : Table Table Balkerne Gate, Colchester
Manufacturer's product descriptionPub - Address: Ipswich Road, Colchester CO4 9WP
Address: Ipswich Road, Colchester CO4 9WP
Chain: Table Table
Listed on Ciao since: 31/10/2017