A few weeks ago Liv and I had a lovely meal in one of our local Frankie and Benny’s restaurants (yes, Bury has two for some reason!). The last time we visited I vowed never to return again as the service was very poor and the food very average for the money charged. Though when I was offered a voucher to try out the new menu who was I to refuse a free meal!
As Liv and I were due to go on holiday the same week, the fridge had been run down. So with an empty fridge (and tummies!) we found ourselves seated in the restaurant at 4pm on a week night, surprised at how busy it was at that time. We were greeted immediately on entry and shown to a corner area with a lovely round table and lots of space for Liv to keep occupied. As with all children who visit Frankie and Bennys, Liv was given a Activity pack containing a colouring pencil and colouring sheets which kept her occupied till our starters of Garlic Pizza Bread (£3.95) and Mozzarella and Tomato Salad (£4.95) arrived. Both were absolutely yummy, presented nicely and arrived quickly. When you take a 3 year old to a restaurant you certainly do not want to be waiting an age for food so I appreciated the speedy delivery. The Mozzarella and Tomato Salad was superb and I always opt for this when spotted on a menu. I found it to be very tasty with slices of ripe tomatoes and served as a light appetiser until our main meal. Liv and I were able to share both starters and devoured them as quickly as they arrived!
For the main meal I had opted for the 8oz Larder Trim Sirloin (with tomatoes and large mushroom – £16.95) with this meal I had the option of house fries, salad or jacket potato. I chose half house fries and half salad (my attempt at being healthy!) with a side order of Spicy Onion Rings (maybe not so healthy! £3.95). Anyone who knows me will know how much I love onion rings!! For Liv, chicken is something she will always eat so I plumped for the Chicken Strips meal with half chips, half salad. Ordered from the Kids Menu, it was great value at £3.95 which also includes a dessert and refillable soft drink. The Kid’s Menus are very extensive, with something for everyone – also includes Vegetarian options.
The main course arrived soon after we had finished our starter which was impeccable. My meal was an absolute plateful brimming with salad, divine juicy cherry tomatoes on the vine and a succulent sirloin all waiting to be devoured. Liv’s meal on the other hand was slightly bland and with only 2 little segments of tomato and cucumber I found myself transferring a lot of my salad over to her plate. Not only my salad but I noticed Liv commandeered most of my steak too! A good move on my part to order the extra onion rings as well! I felt extremely guilty that I could not manage all my food as there was too much(even with Liv sharing!) and felt that I would have rather seen more salad on Liv’s plate to start with. Albeit the Kids Meals are very reasonable I would prefer to pay a little extra and ensure there was a healthy side order to accompany the meal. The choice is house fries and mashed potato with a Kids Meal. All that said, Liv did eat all her food (and most of mine!) and was very content.
Needing a breather I decided to plump for a Sundae for Liv and I to share for our dessert. Completely throwing the Kids Meal deal with dessert out of kilter! The sundae included vanilla, strawberry and chocolate ice cream and 2 wafers. The perfect finish to a lovely, very tasty meal.
Liv and I visited Frankie and Benny’s in order to taste and review their “new” menu. Though I failed to see what the new additions to the menu were and it certainly wasn’t advertised as a new menu. At the time we visited I was handed the normal menu for dinner time. Though this did not have any adverse effect on the meal as a whole, which was well cooked, well presented, delivered within good time and we definitely left with full tummies and smiles on our faces.
The service at Frankie and Benny’s this time was superb in comparison to previous experiences. The staff were very attentive over Liv and made time to speak to her and make sure she was ok. Liv was also given a balloon (great to keep the kids entertained!) and a small, free pack of Mini Eggs (as advertised as an Easter offer). I appreciated this attention, especially as the restaurant became busier with more diners whilst we were eating our meal.
The meal in total would have cost £42 (which also included a bottle of Magners and a Lemonade for myself). As a single parent I wouldn’t be able to justify this amount on a regular basis but for a special treat the meal was definitely worth that. My opinion of the restaurant has changed, mainly due to the level of service on this particular occasion being of a higher standard than previous visits and I hope Liv and I can visit again soon.
Frankie and Benny’s offer an extensive range of food, based over several menus (breakfast, lunch, specials etc)