Encounters Restaurant

Encounters Restaurant

  • British

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We say…

Located on Mansfield Road, just a short walk up from The Victoria Centre bus station and in close proximity to the Nottingham Trent University city site, is Encounters: a restaurant that has been serving honest British cuisine up in the city centre since 1993. Now entering into its second decade in business, the longevity of Encounters is proof of its success, making it a must-visit location if you're in Nottingham city centre

The restaurant is small yet perfectly proportioned and offers diners an escape from the hustle and bustle of the city centre for an hour or two. With comfortable chairs and a light and airy dining space, Encounters provides the perfect backdrop for enjoying the delicious British cuisine on offer.

Proprietor Paul Shaw has used his extensive knowledge and wealth of experience in the restaurant business to create a classic British menu that showcases the best of local produce. You can expect, when seasonally available, to see dishes such as plaice stuffed with crab, cooked in a Thermidor sauce with onions, cream, cheese and English grain mustard; honey glazed chicken cooked in a cream and mild mustard sauce; and the indulgent beef encounter that features a succulent fillet steak stuffed with local stilton, wrapped in puff pastry and served with a creamy port sauce. As well as a delectable a la carte menu, a fantastic value lunch offer runs daily that is ideal for city centre workers to enjoy on their lunch break or for weary shoppers to devour before heading back out in to the mayhem.

Encounters is an excellent independent restaurant boasting fantastic cuisine at affordable prices that comes with great friendly service as standard. Booking is highly recommended, particularly at the weekend.

Review summary

9.4 based on 62 reviews
  • Food
  • Value
  • Ambiance
  • Service

Reviews (62)

  • David West

    Overall:

    Excellent food, choices and a very pleasant atmosphere. SUPERB

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  • Roderick Roe

    Overall:

    Faultless, as always, will be back!

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  • Karen Smith

    Overall:

    Fantastic. I’ve never had a prawn cocktail that big ever and tasty, a meal on its own. Great selection of food. The customer service is excellent. Will be going back soon

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  • Roderick Roe

    Overall:

    Great venue, wonderful host and simply delicious food. Will definitely return!!

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  • Shirley Cooper

    Overall:

    Excellent food and great service from a very friendly owner. It was great value for money and very generous portions Will definitely be returning.

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  • Michael Chilton

    Overall:

    It's not the restaurant''s fault so we'll give you 5 stars but the booking system certainly let you down. We were expecting Go dine to come back to us to confirm (or not) the booking but no one came back to us. We rang and rang the number given but no reply. We had to make alternative arrangements in the end. It was my partner''s birthday and I couldn't leave it to chance. Paula from Godine finally emailed us some 18 hours later which was too late for us. Do you have a different number we can call and hopefully we will be able to visit you the next time we are in Nottingham.

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  • Susan Waring

    Overall:

    As a change from Petit Paris which is always excellent my friends and I were keen to try somewhere else that did a good value lunchtime menu. I have to admit that my friends and I were disappointed with Encounters. It was good value but sadly lacking in atmosphere as our group of four were the only people there for lunch. The meal was ok but rather too much sauce with everything. The vegetables and homemade bread rolls were good. The restaurant was still showing signs of a lively party that was held the night before.

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  • Tracy Brewster

    Overall:

    Excellent !! Massive portions & great service

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  • Grace Lowe

    Overall:

    I spent a lovely lunch time at this charming restaurant. Nothing was too much trouble for the very amicable and witty host. One immediately felt spoilt and the varied lunchtime menu made it difficult to choose especially when it came to dessert as there was so much choice and everything was cooked to perfection. Yes the portions are hearty, but complain when you don't get enough not when there's too much! All in all, I would strongly recommend visiting this Nottingham gem. It was recommended to me by word of mouth and me and those who accompanied me will most certainly do the same. "Thank you for a lovely afternoon" xxx

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  • Sue Shephard

    Overall:

    Fantastic place. All food very fresh and beautifully presented. Quirky original place being a bakers. Staff are very polite helpful and friendly. Couldn't do enough. Nice to be served by the owner. Certainly would recommend this restaurant. First class.

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  • Erica Chambers

    Overall:

    Really lovely meal as always been twice before with work. Took my partner who thought it was very good wished he'd not had a starter and saved himself for pud ..lovely gentleman told us to share starter and pud next time, perfect.

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  • Shirley Twist

    Overall:

    A great evening food lovely and well-presented everyone enjoyed it. We are talking about coming again for a Christmas meal.

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  • Stephanie Chadwick

    Overall:

    Lovely food and service had the front room all to ourselves like a private dining room. Décor in need of updating but all in all a very enjoyable evening and great value

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  • Mrs C Dengate

    Overall:

    Excellent meal....good service. Not many people in so lacked a certain amount of atmosphere. The food was very good with generous portions. Would definitely recommend.

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  • Roderick Roe

    Overall:

    Absolutely fabulous, great food, reasonably priced, wide selection, service very good and an engaging and pleasant host with a sense of fun, never felt rushed and could quite easily have stayed all night 10/10.

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  • Alma Wood

    Overall:

    3rd time at encounters, another great meal

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  • Colin Constantine

    Overall:

    Went for a meal for my retirement had a lovely meal- No rushing and was made to feel welcome I WILL be going there again Colin Constantine

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  • Kathryn Coulthard

    Overall:

    Dined there on Valentine's night and the food was plentiful and delicious. Service was excellent and as I didn't like sour cream they ensured that I had a replacement sauce that I did like. The place does need refurbishment though, the heater on the wall was extremely noisy, we both felt cold and there was a leak in the ceiling with the drips being collected in an old biscuit tin. The lady behind us felt a drop of water fall on her head. I think if the place was given a bit of a makeover, it would be the perfect place to eat.

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  • Sheridan Harvey

    Overall:

    Once again an absolutely fabulous meal, this is one of my favourite restaurants now!

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  • Sheridan Harvey

    Overall:

    What a fabulous experience, the owner was very attentive, offering recommendations and letting us try the wine before deciding which to have. All fresh cooked food which was delicious. This all came with a very reasonable price and I left completely satisfied. I will be visiting again very soon and would highly recommend.

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  • Mrs Wood

    Overall:

    Not what I expected. But pleasant.

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  • Christine Fee

    Overall:

    Excellent food, generous portions cooked to perfection. Waiter(ess)s very attentive and polite and friendly. All in all a great restaurant.

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  • Ailene Cumberpatch

    Overall:

    Another fabulous meal for the family on our golden wedding. No complaints. Service first class, food first class. Ever heard of portion control?! Thank you Paul and co.

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  • Jason Byng

    Overall:

    It was our second time here and we won't leave it so long to go again. Another great experience food wise, such good value and very filling. Didn't have space for the pudding even though I could've had a doggy bag just like my partner did with her main.

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  • Diane Heenan

    Overall:

    First time at Encounters after several recommendations, had a lovely lunch will definitely go again.

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  • Pam Perry

    Overall:

    Great little place, very quirky and the service couldn't be better but the food was lacking a little and because it's cooked to order the wait was a bit long.

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  • Tracey ydlibi

    Overall:

    We had another super family night out! Food as always great! Always an evening with lots of laughter!

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  • Caroline Phillips

    Overall:

    Lovely meal and cosy atomsphere

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  • Malcolm Swannell

    Overall:

    Excellent food and good service. As always.

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  • Paddy Trim

    Overall:

    Excellent evening for all! Superb service as usual!

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  • Colin Aitken

    Overall:

    Excellent dining experience. The friendly and relaxed atmosphere made our evening stress free. The proprietor attended to us personally and served us all the most delicious dishes, all very reasonably priced. Highly recommended by all!

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  • Russell Wilcox

    Overall:

    Excellent!

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  • Elaine Woodward

    Overall:

    The food at Encounters was very generous, good quality and nothing was too much trouble for the proprietor. Unfortunately the restaurant was quiet for a Friday night.

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  • Helen Monday

    Overall:

    Always good food and excellent value at Encounters.

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  • jill clarke

    Overall:

    Fantastic value for money - such a great atmosphere at Encounters!

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  • Diane Rowley

    Overall:

    Excellent food at Encounters, huge portions! Service top notch. Only gave 4* on ambiance as it was a pretty quiet night when we went. Would recommend and return!

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  • Irene Thompson

    Overall:

    Wonderful restaurant. This place ticks all boxes and more. The whole experience was awesome, a must for those who have never visited; my husband and I will certainly be back. Paul and his staff certainly know how to treat his guests, in fact this has got to be the best service of any restaurant we have ever been to and we have been to a few! Thanks Paul for a great evening!

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  • Stacey Teeboon

    Overall:

    Me and my two daughters visited Encounters last night for the very 1st time and it definitely won't be the last, food was gorgeous and it's a lovely friendly place! Service was 2nd to none, looking forward to returning.

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  • Steve Hughes

    Overall:

    Great night at Encounters Restaurant. You have to judge it by what it is - an old institution that doesn't do change. Generous servings, great service and a beautiful décor. This is dining a'la 1976 at its finest. Definitely will be heading back.

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  • Sharon dore

    Overall:

    Excellent meal and superb personal service at Encounters! Will definitely return despite the journey!

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  • Denise Rhodes

    Overall:

    Our first time to this excellent restaurant, certainly will be returning.

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  • Brian Taylor

    Overall:

    Excellent meal and service. Prawn cocktail was gigantic. Should offer a choice of a smaller one at a lower price so as not to over-face small eaters. Steak was nice but ate more like rump than fillet.

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  • Elizabeth Owen

    Overall:

    Encounters restaurant is extremely welcoming, friendly staff, homely feel. The most amazing cheese and onion cobs :) Very generous portions, great value for money.

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  • Jackie Parkin

    Overall:

    As ever the food and service at Encounters is excellent and as for value for money wonderful.

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  • Elaine Flegg

    Overall:

    A wonderful Birthday celebration at Encounters. First time we have been to this restaurant. The food was hearty and well presented in a warm friendly atmosphere. Will definitely be going again.

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  • Tom Hunt

    Overall:

    Fantastic meal at Encounters. Would recommend to anyone. Will be going again.

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  • Vanessa Brooks

    Overall:

    Service is great at Encounters and there is always lots on your plate. Also, plenty of choice. Would like to see a different menu now though.

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  • Ruth Brasier

    Overall:

    We ate here for the first time, the meal was very nice and the menu variety was excellent, the staff were also friendly, go and try for yourselves you wont be disappointed.

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  • Steve Clayton

    Overall:

    The owner is lovely and stops to chat with you which makes for a nice welcome. The décor is a bit tired and I was a bit cold but the food is excellent and we will definitely be going back.

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  • John Dowling

    Overall:

    A wonderful dining experience which prides itself on booking a table for the evening. Some people consider service slow but when we asked if a pie had a pastry base we were told yes but as it hasn't been cooked yet as we cook to order you can have it with just a crust if you like or in a suet pastry. If you enjoy your food as fresh as that then you can't expect it to be as fast. Personally I like the fact that you eat at a slower pace and enjoy the fine food. If you want fast food then Burger King is just down the road and you will miss out on a wonderful evening!

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  • John Dowling

    Overall:

    Firstly, the restaurant is a lot bigger than it looks from the outside. The small appearance has put me off for years but I was wrong. Service - The staff cannot do enough to help and are friendly, efficient but relaxed. If you want to enjoy a relaxed and un-rushed dining experience this is the place! Oh and I forgot to mention very friendly. I you expect to be rushed out of your seat for the next customer expect to be disappointed! I think they have a policy of book a table and it is yours for the night. Food - Huge menu along with specials. My only problem was choosing which I wanted the most! I went with my partner and we had completely different meals and enjoyed them all. Value - Meals were less than I expected but superbly cooked. Wines good value. Just be warned that House is served by the litre and not the standard 75cc but is very pleasant. Overall - We went for my partner's Birthday and it was a very enjoyable experience and we will go again just ourselves and with friends.

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  • Sara Hurst

    Overall:

    After visiting last year and being highly impressed with the service and food I decided to go back again. The service was just as good and the food was second to none - couldn't have asked for better. Definitely going back next year!

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  • Steve Wheatcroft

    Overall:

    This was the first time at Encounters for many of us and we were made to feel very welcome. Good food and excellent service. I am sure that we will return.

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  • Donna Marquess

    Overall:

    Absolutely Fantastic, menu extensive with somthing for everyone. Don't expect to rush in and out as foods cooked from fresh and with the amount you get your going to spend an enjoyable, relaxed evening there. Front of house is fantastic, warm and welcoming.

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  • Terri Chong

    Overall:

    Very good service.

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  • Steven Swift

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  • Sara Hurst

    Overall:

    Couldn't have asked for better. The food and the service was second to none. I was really well looked after and definatley well fed. The restaurant has a very relaxing atmosphere and there is no rush. The owner is very accomodating and friendly. I will definatley recommend Encounters to everybody and it is one restaurant I intend to frequent.

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  • Stuart Mayfield

    Overall:

    This is a superb restaurant, friendly and polite staff and so accommodating. Well presented, delicious food, cooked to perfection. I'm so pleased we went here and we'll be back again.

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  • Helen Ridley

    Overall:

    As always great food and great service. Very friendly and welcoming. Would recommend to my friends.

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  • Sara Osborne

    Overall:

    This was our first vist to Encounters and we were not disappointed! The greeting on arrival and the friendly efficient service were second to none. It made a refresshing change to have the owners serving, in a relaxed and informal way. The starters were fantastic (the menu is honest when it states the Prawn Cocktail is the biggest you will have seen). The only slight criticism would be that my husbands fillet steak was not as tender as he expected it to be. However he did choose beef Wellington, which comes cooked in pastry, and understands that the chef cannot see the steak cooking once it is hddden inside the crust. He expected the steak to fall apart as it was fillet, but it was actually a little tough, although still tasty (He did say that it wouldn't put him off try a differrent type of steak next time! and ........it can't have been too tough because he ate every last bit!). The bread was superb, and freshly baked.

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  • Jonathan Castledine

    Overall:

    Everything was just great.

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  • Linda Richards

    Overall:

    Excellent venue, friendly service always a joy to have a meal at Encounters.Have recommended to several friends and no-one has ever been disappointed.

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