Reviews for Phoenix Tree Garden
by Georgie Bayly
11 days ago
Three of us went here for dinner last night. I had received a voucher from Zomato, so was excited to try Phoenix Tree out as I have walked past it many times. However, after reading all the reviews on the internet about Phoenix Tree, I was wary about the service, the food and the overall experience we would have.
My sister and I arrived at 6.30pm (my sister's boyfriend arrived about 10 minutes later) and we were greeted with a friendly 'hello' by the manager/boss (??) and were led out past the kitchen, up some stairs and into their outdoor garden patio seating area, which was surrounded by a plastic marquee. It was very pretty as it looked out onto a beautiful lush green garden. However, it was not ideal for this cold winters' night. Although it seemed like you were closed in under a marquee, it was still cold. The plastic walls were not exactly zipped up around the edges of the patio, leading us to having cold feet all night. This was the beginning of a not-so-enjoyable dining experience.
The first thing I noticed was our table was only set up for two people, even though I had called the restaurant earlier saying that there would be three of us dining. The waitress brought over two glasses of water as requested. When my sister's boyfriend arrived, the waitress did not ask him whether he wanted a drink or a glass of water, and after 20 minutes, I finally asked her to bring over another glass. Instead she brought a bottle of water and simply forgot the glass. She was sorry, but I still could not understand why she did this.
We first started with tea. We tried the Hibiscus Flower Tea ($9.50). It arrived served in a glass teapot. It was very pretty as the pot was filled with different flowers and the taste was lovely. This was one of the very few highlights of the night.
For entrées, we ordered the Money Bags ($9) which were prawn, crab stick, green peas, carrot and corn all fastened up in a spring roll wrapper. They were tasty, and we could have eaten another plate of them! We also ordered the Dragon Rolls ($12) which were like small rice paper rolls with prawn, silk noodles, carrot, cucumber, mint and basil with a spicy chilli sauce. They were far too many silk noodles inside each small roll and we could not taste the prawn or anything else.
For mains, we ordered the Tom Yum Soup with prawns, mushrooms, broccoli and tomato ($15), the Vietnamese Noodles with chicken ($15.50) and the Seafood Noodles with tomato sauce ($16.50).
First off, the Tom Yum Soup. It arrived in the most beautiful looking pot, but when we started ladling the soup into the small bowls, we realised there was only a small amount of sauce and not many prawns at all. For $15, it was a complete rip-off. It was only about 300mls in total, which would have been more suited as an entrée, rather than a main dish. The Seafood Noodles were terrible. The noodles tasted like the tinned spaghetti ones and we all agreed that noodles with a tomato sauce is definitely not an Asian-fusion dish. It did not even taste like Italian spaghetti! Actually we could not even tell you what ingredients they used, because it was that bad. We left almost all of it as none of us could eat more than a few bites. I ordered the Vietnamese Noodles for my main and I was really hoping it would be better than the other two dishes. While the chicken on top was delicious, the noodles and salad were very bland. Also, none of these mains were served with rice, so that was a real let down. You have to pay an extra $2.50 for rice. We also ordered the Gold Silver Bread on the side ($6) which consisted of three steamed buns and deep fried bread, which you could dip in condensed milk. It was definitely the highlight of the night. The bread was sweet and filling, so we did not order any desserts.
As for the service, well it was not great. All three of us have worked in restaurants and cafes / studied hospitality and I hate to say this, but it was the worst customer service I have experienced in my life. The service was literally non-existent. The waitress was nice, but not trained very well. The manager/boss was friendly when we arrived, but we did not see him for the rest of the night. Below are a few examples:
- When we arrived at the restaurant, the table was only set for two people, even though I had rang earlier to say there would be three of us dining tonight.
- When my sister's boyfriend arrived, the waitress did not ask him whether he wanted a drink or even a glass of water. After 20 minutes, I had to wave the waitress down to ask her for a glass of water. Instead she came over with a bottle of water. I was thinking...how is he going to drink water with no glass? She finally came back with a glass!
- We had to wait at least 30 minutes for our entrées and main dishes. The entrées came out within a few minutes of each other, which I guess was okay. However, we expected the main dishes to arrive at the same time, as it is common sense that they are meant to. Alas, no. The Tom Yum Soup came out and then two of us were waiting for our main dishes, with no time estimate from the waitress. I waved her over again (throughout the night she seemed so oblivious about what she was doing) and told her that we had been waiting ages for our main dishes and asked her when they were coming out. She went back to the kitchen and about 10 minutes later, they finally arrived. Because my sister's Tom Yum Soup had come out earlier, she had to sit there while we ate our long awaited meals. Poor display of service here.
- My sister's boyfriend also noted that the other diner's meals were all coming out at different times as well. In addition, none of the other tables were set when we arrived. In fact, the waitress was setting up all the tables while the diners were seated before her!!! We thought this was unacceptable as you just do not do that, ever!
- Our water glasses were never topped up. We finished drinking all the water from the bottle and this was never replaced. Also it took ages for the waitress to remove our plates after we had finished eating. I even put the plates right on the edge of our table, hoping that she would notice them and take them away. She did not.
I gave the Phoenix Tree restaurant a 2/5 rating because we all agreed that the food was mediocre, the service the worst we had received and overall, a unmemorable experience. The only highlights of the night were the hibiscus flower tea, the money bags and the gold silver bread. I really wanted to enjoy this restaurant, because I have so far, enjoyed every restaurant I have been to.
When you have such a bad experience, you can't lie and say you enjoyed it. The food was definitely not authentic, compared to all the Asian restaurants we have tried over Auckland and beyond. To be honest, I will not be coming back. It was extremely disappointing.
[Side note: When we went up to pay, the manager/boss asked how the food was. I replied "It was okay". My sister's boyfriend said he did not enjoy it. The manager/boss looked like he did not care. He did not respond, no reply, no sympathy, nothing].
by Fabiola Milligan
one month ago
A group of friends went for the high tea with discounted vouchers. We found the customer service really great, friendly and accommodating.
The setting is very nice, looks clean and is was nice to spend a winter afternoon in the covered garden area.
The food was fine, the hot chocolate was delicious. We had a great afternoon.
by Ashley Walker
one month ago
I am a lover of all Asian food, but this was by far the best Asian restaurant I've ever been to, I am so lucky to have discovered this place as they offer genuine Asian food. There is no need to travel halfway across the globe for good Asian food, when we can experience the taste of Asia in our very own Remuera.
Phoenix tree garden is not your typical after-work ‘local’. It's both sophisticated and glamorous yet surprisingly, there is nothing pretentious about it. The restaurant provides all aspects of Asia, the atmosphere is mesmerising, with an enchanted feel. The outdoor seating is set in a Chinese garden, it is perfect on any day as it's sheltered by a gazebo with the heart of China in mind. The experience is enhanced with the cocktails they have to offer, the blue lagoon cocktail is my personal favourite as it captivated all my senses offering just the right amount of kick to the taste buds. Get the most out of your dining experience with the beautiful Asian Dishes complimented with the perfect cocktail. I also highly recommend the high tea, a touch of elegance, definitely an entirely different experience one simply cannot miss.
The indoor seating is also just as good the outdoor garden seating, with the constant aroma of scented candles and the music catering perfectly to the mood it has a fantastic ambience. If you feel like a change of scenery but don’t want to travel far, Phoenix tree garden should most definitely be your first choice as you'll never forget this dining experience. The service provided by the friendly staff is impeccable. As a major foodie, I can confidently say this place deserves a 5 out of 5 and believe me, I would give it a higher rating if I could!
4 months ago
My friends and I went here for high tea as we had a deal voucher and luckily we did! The service was okay but the waitress had no idea what she was doing. She didn't explain any of the foods on the high tea tray so we were left to wonder and explore. The cutlery was dirty and the place seemed like a fusion between Asian and European food. The food was okay, some tasted not fresh. A few of them I didn't want to eat cause they made my stomach turn. It was definitely pricey for what we paid as there weren't a lot of high tea options. Unfortunately I won't be back as there are other better places for the same price out there.
4 months ago
Went today with three friends, we had purchased vouchers for the high tea and cocktails. The venue is very nice, garden lovely, and the staff were attentive and professional.
The food was lovely, we all enjoyed the range of foods for the high tea, with a mix of savoury and sweet, and even a little salad. Unfortunately one of our party is deathly allergic to prawns, so she wasn't able to eat two of the savoury dishes, but she still felt that she had had enough to eat by the end.
I will be recommending this place to friends, and with the groupon deal it's certainly well worth the money.
5 months ago
I bought their voucher for high tea online and went there yesterday with my kids. I would say the garden like surrounding was great and my kids loved the food. But I do think they are overpriced and I wouldn't go again without the voucher. Also their service was not friendly and professional, my child played the small service machine on the table and touched the button accidentally, after a long time (we almost forgot it), the waitress came and tried to blame my child. Anyway, I wouldn't recommend this restaurant to my friends.
by Reza Razavi
6 months ago
I have got very good service and yummy food from Phoenix tree perfect food
by Steven Wei
6 months ago
I don't usually write reviews but felt compelled to. My third time there and another awesome experience yet again. Absolutely love their authentic Asian food. The garden at the back sets up a vibrant atmosphere and the staff there really took good care of the group of us. Would recommend this place in a heart beat!
by Sweets And Brains
8 months ago
Came here with family friends to celebrate my aunt's birthday. Even though the weather wasn't so good we were able to enjoy their garden outside as we ate in the tent/marquee. They had interesting decor inside as well. Their customer service is very good and accommodated our large group really well. I thought it was cool that they had blown up photos of their food in their iPad menus in addition to their normal menus. They had quite a range of food that was good but I wasn't particularly bowled over by any of them.
more photos on: http://sweetsandbrains.wordpress.com/2013/09/20/random-eats-10/
10 months ago
A couple of my friends and I went for the supposedly "high-tea" at Phoenix Tree. I would say that the food is very average, and I wouldn't pay the money for it had I known. The tea, supposedly "refillable" doesn't seem like it's worth having a second run of water. It tastes like water after a second pot.
They also messed up our booking. I booked for a Saturday, but when we showed up we were told we don't have a table & they couldn't find the booking in their records. I even called them a second time that day to move the time to be half an hour earlier, and they said ok. If they couldn't find an original booking, how could they agree to move the time? In the end they found my name, but it was under a Tuesday. When I was trying to clarify it, one of the wait staff even said - oh, no you said Tuesday. I was adamant that I booked for a Saturday. Anyway, they found a table for us which was just vacated by previous patrons. We had to call their attention a number of times before they would bring things for us.
Never going back there again. Don't be fooled by group deals or vouchers too.
Apr 21, 2013
Went there to try their 5 course degustation menu. The presentation skills were good. However, the cooking technique was very disappointing. The appetizer was mostly cooked frozen veggies placed on a piece of lettuce. The Mackeral fish was a bad choice of fish to serve. It was extremely fishy and full of bones. The steak was unevenly cooked. One side medium rare, one side overcooked and tough. Will not be going back.
by Aline P
Apr 20, 2013
I like their high tea. It is unusual because they serve both your usual pastries and cakes but also a fusion of Asian savouries such as Vietnamese rolls, Malaysian curry turnovers, tempura and the like. Then you finish off with the sweet pastries. Aside from the usual teas, they serve a pinkish tea of herbs and flowers. Very aromatic. If you are coming for the first time, it is a must-try.
The ambiance in the outdoor garden resto is very relaxing and rustic while the indoor seats upstairs is set in a romantic and Zen like tone.
The staff is friendly and prompt but I would have liked a more polite manners on the phone.
by David & Beth Reid
Feb 16, 2013
Went there to celebrate a family birthday. We were well greeted by the staff, and then shown to our table. The staff were very attentive & knowledgeable about the food. The entrees were brought out very quickly. The clearing of the table was a bit haphazard though. The mains came quickly, but there had been a misunderstanding with one, and most people were nearly finished when I got mine. While delicious, beware of the chili meals, the menu shows one chili, but it is a hot chili And I love hot food! Over all a wonderful night, and a place we would consider going back to.
Feb 15, 2013
Four of us went here for dinner as its a new local place and we wanted to try it out. Setting is charming out the back and there is a fun function room upstairs for 15.
That's about all the place had going for it. Despite being mid February the Christmas decorations were still up as were the Christmas greetings on the wall in the gazebo!
The food is over-priced and under-whelming - in fact the food is dismal, boring, very limited in selection and at $27 a dish ridiculously expensive. The duck salad was bland and the skin slimey and not at all crispy, the chicken the most boring of all dishes (they brought us the wrong chicken dish initially) and the entree platter to share something from a chinese restaurant 30 years ago. What a shame.
Avoid this totally.
by Monica Chen
Jan 07, 2013
Went here for lunch and ate in the garden area. I definitely recommend eating in the garden area if you're giving this a try, the setting is lovely with a nice atmosphere. Went on a very quiet day, the staff were attentive and friendly and food quick to arrive, though I'm not sure how it would be on a busy day. I really enjoyed the food, especially the duck salad, however I would say if you're looking for authentic Asian food this is not it. I do think it's a bit overpriced, but it is a Remuera restaurant.
by Ben Mostert
Dec 19, 2012
One of the best meals I had for some time. Attractive garden environment, good service and a excellent food.
by Jane L
Dec 11, 2012
We recently enjoyed an excellent experience at this restaurant. The food was the best Thai/Asian fusion, my husband and I have both come across. A misunderstanding regarding a voucher was managed very effectively. We will be returning again and encouraging others to try this restaurant also. If you do come, we recommend requesting the garden area.
by Margaret Khoong
Nov 26, 2012
The location, the atmosphere and the garden settings are great.
But the food is average and well overpriced. A main was average $25-$32, and it does not come with rice or salad!! With the same amount of money we spent, we would have had a much better meal elsewhere. The waiting staff are friendly but absolutely inexperienced. Ordered a few bowls of rice and expected it comes in a bowl individually, instead they have put all the rice in one big bowl!! Had never been served in such a way, so inappropriate! The most disappointing moment was at the cashier counter, the lady was rude and pulled a long face when we told her we have a couple of the deal vouchers. Definitely not going back there even with any specials!!!
by Amy Bowen
Nov 19, 2012
Location, setting and food were very good.
However the service was pretty bad. It appears the waiting staff have no experience and it shows.
We were moved not long after being seated as the table we were at had been booked by another group. Not a problem, except they attempted to move us to a table with a pole next to it and there was no way the 5th chair to the table would fit. We had to shift our own chair, the new table was not set up correctly and while 2 people had water, the waiter did not come back for the rest of us. We had to flag him down.
The food took a little while to arrive but it was tasty.
We were not asked if we wanted dessert and again had to flag down the waiter. Having taken our order he left all the menus on the table and the dinner plates etc were not cleared all at the same time.
When paying, 2 of our group paid cash and were not given change until another member asked if they were going to be given it. The reply was "they did not ask". These may seem like minor complaints when added up, especially when you could tell they were trying to present an upmarket, classy establishment, just didn't cut it.
Definately would not come back. There are far too many other good Thai places where the food and the service are good to bother with this place!
by Maxine Pairama
Oct 27, 2012
First time diners and found everything Outstanding food environment, staff. My favourite was the duck salad 10/10. The garden seating was comfortable, and very spacious.Highly recommend this new restaurant would definitely go back!! Awesome, awesome evening. Thanks again to the chefs and staff!!
by Jim Johnston
Oct 17, 2012
We are have been twice now and on each occasion received exemplary service and had two super evenings. The first time outside in the garden with another couple , also first timers the second inside downstairs for just two.
The menu varied but not too big, attention to detail in all facets of service excellent from first entry to ongoing at the table and we consider it very good value for money.
The decor is unique both inside (upstairs and at ground level)and outside and you are made to feel very special. In all two thoroughly enjoyable evenings.
by Derek Schneideman
Oct 08, 2012
We have dined at Phoenix Tree Garden twice and on both occassions enjoyed a superb evening. Our second visit was for our teenage daughter's birthday attended by 14 of her friends. The organization and preparation by the folks at Phoenix Tree was outstanding. The food and service was wonderful. Similar to other reviewers we would highlight the duck salad, spring rolls, and dragon rolls. The outdoor garden area is dleightful and the upstairs dining area very intimate.
Special mention must be given to the restaurant Manager JOJO who is a ball of fun, Renald who is the epitome of charm, the 2 waiters who exude charm and good manners. Finally the owner Wen is exceedingly gracious if a little shy.
If price is not your overiding criteria we thoroughly recommend Phoenix Tree Garden as great eclectic Asian themed restaurant
by John D
Oct 01, 2012
We had an evening of pleasure in this delightful restaurant and were amazed by the variation in atmosphere. Nice traditional tables in the front with some amazing seating upstairs. Then outside to a completely hidden outdoor area. The lovely wait staff of brother and sister were very friendly and took time to chat about the food. The food itself was great and the best laksa I have eaten in a long time - including in Malaysia!! When something minor didn't arrive at the same time as something else a free plate of garlic bread instantly appeared. I think Beverley P must have been to a different Phoenix Tree as I can't wait to go back to this one. Looking forward to the ribs that I only saw from a distance!!!
by Olivia Winston
Sep 28, 2012
Had a lovely lunch here, with a splendid seafood laksa. I chose from the blackboard lunch specials, so it was only $12.50. Great flavours.
Extremely nice staff and good service.
I thought the surroundings were nicely decorated, and the chairs were particularly comfortable!
There's a secret garden area out the back too, which is quite huge, and beautifully presented.
by Beverley Pollard
Sep 22, 2012
I have only walked out of a couple of restaurants in my life and one of these was the Phoenix Tree last night.
The service was appalling, with 5 adults and 1 child we had 4 entrees served and the 5th one never arrived. We then had 1 main served and a salad. 3 more mains turned up and the 4th one was not served. We gave up and left after nearly 2 1/2 hours of trying to have a family celebration meal.
Disfunctional, disorganised and extremely disappointing. Needless to say, we will not return or recommend. They need to go back to basics, employ some waiting staff and cooks who can co--ordinate to serve in a timely manner.
by Lancy Chua
Sep 09, 2012
I had been waiting for this cafe/restaurant to open since they put their signs up about two months ago and now it is! Tonight we went to give it a try and it was certainly worth the wait. What was once a drab looking Chinese restaurant (great food tho’) has now been transformed into a classy, warm dining experience with an extensive menu of Asian dishes (a selection of Thai, Vietnamese, SE Asian flavours) presented beautifully in good sized portions for a shared meal by four people (or individual servings). Everything was delicious starting with the duck salad in a delightful plum sauce, then braised spare ribs in a spicy broth, a mushroom medley, and on to dessert with fried banana dribbled in Valrhona chocolate sauce and french vanilla icecream. There is so much more on the menu that I would like to certainly go back and try. It has been one of the more pleasurable restaurants I have been to lately.
by Elisa Kirk
Sep 01, 2012
Stunning garden seating, plush indoor seating, really enjoyed our meal here. The Dragon Rolls and Duck Salad entree were out of this world. Cant wait to return to try more dishes. Thanks for a lovely evening
by Robin Smith
Aug 30, 2012
The food is disappointing and overpriced. We waited at least half an hour for the starters, given that we were only customers that night.
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