The night we got to New Hampshire we were tired and hungry after a 10 1/2 hour drive. The last two years we stayed at Stonehurst Manor, which had, dinner included. This was the first year we were on our own to find our dinner! Screamin’ Boar was a guest recommendation of good smoked food. We love smoked food and was looking forward to dinner. When we got there we were encouraged as we saw the smoker with the wonderful aroma of smoked food. We found the employees friendly and helpful. However we were greatly disappointed in the food. I love smoked pulled pork – there was not any smokiness to the meat – plus the BBQ sauce was bland. Greg had smoked meatloaf and chicken. The meatloaf was not good and the pulled chicken was plain. The cole slaw was good – but the mac and cheese was marginal. Their hot sauce was not very good either. We are accustomed to good smoke food from Kentucky Greg’s which is run by a southerner who learned the art of smoking food in the south. They slow-cook their pork for about 12-hours so it is tender and the smoke is through the food. In general I have found other restaurants indicate they are smokehouses but the smoky flavor is missing from their food. Most likely they do not know how to use the smoker and are only smoking their food for a very short time. Good smoked food takes time and patience. We had three more nights of dinner and once we find a place we tend to stick with it – we crossed this restaurant off our list!
Gordi’s Fish & Steak House
The next day we had the same challenge on where to have dinner. We decided to go to Gordi’s Fish & Steak House, which opens at 4:30, and we got there at 5:00. I had high hopes as they had a nice sign out front and the entrance looked promising. But there was no one to seat us and we waited with another couple for someone to notice we were there. An employee came out of the kitchen and looked at us and kept walking. Yes, it was not his job to sit us but don’t you think he would find someone to take care of us? We were thinking of leaving when someone else came out of the kitchen and I suspect he was either the manager or owner. (Though not dressed for the job.) He said he would sit us but there was no “sorry for the delay” or “how are you tonight”. No small talk at all. He showed us to a table left the menus and walked away. The service was abrupt. Then he came over with a loaf of bread and left it on top of a bread plate and said, “here you go” with his back to us as he walked away. Honestly, I felt like we were an inconvenience. I thought this service is a joke for a tourist town. Then the waitress came, a lady a little older in age, and she was really nice. But we did see the manager or owner (again not sure) walking around sitting people as he carried his toddler with him. Then he was carrying his toddler in one arm (the toddler had a pacifier in his mouth) with a loaf of bread in his other hand to bring to another table. I honestly have never seen that before! The dinner was better than Screamin Boar – but remember that food was not good – so hopefully we would only go up! I had the chicken Gordon Bleu and it was good. The baked potato was over baked with the skin being too hard. The corn on the cob was old corn and barely edible. Greg had a pasta dish and the pasta sauce was not too interesting. It tasted like tomato paste, water, and a little spice. The homemade bread was really good. After this experience, we were very frustrated. We had two more nights of dinner and once we find a place we tend to stick with it – we crossed this restaurant off our list!
Stay tuned for the final segment of our restaurant adventure in New Hampshire! It sure is tough when you are a tourist to find the good restaurants at reasonable prices!