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Where to eat in and around Chester

Visiting the Chester area and looking for somewhere to eat? or just looking for some advice before you spend your hard earned cash? This restaurant guide is what you need. Unlike some other guides, which are clearly sponsored, this guide is based on personal experience and I guarantee that I have visited every place mentioned.  If you want more information on a particular place, then just e-mail me and I'll tell you more.

Tip - Many restaurants in the city centre have become very anal over the last year or so.  They seem to swap and change over whether they take bookings at the weekends or not, so it is worth a phone call in advance.  With Chester's increased tourism, most places no longer seem concerned with repeat business, and with a few exceptions (Ego, Bensons, Dinos to name 3) quality has deteriorated at the City centre restaurants, and the best quality and value food is now to be found outside the city.

Mike's Quick Links (based on obtaining the best type of food)

Italian, Chinese, Thai, Indian, English/Pub Grub, Mediterranean, Tex Mex, French, Tapas

PRICE GUIDE RATING

*    Affordable for a normal night out **    Will cost a little more than a one star
***    This better be worth the extra !! ****   Special occasion only, or you're dead rich !!

 

NAME WHERE TEL. No. TYPE PRICE RATING & GENERAL COMMENTS
Amantola Garden City, near Queensferry, just off the by-pass 01244 811324 Indian */**  Good effort, but just can't compete with the Bengal Dynasty which is 5 minutes away.  Dark inside and service is not the best. Good Sunday buffet though.
Bella Pasta Eastgate Street 01244 325420 Italian (ish) ** Pricey for a restaurant chain in my opinion, but the food is nice. You can't book and it does get busy at weekends.
Bengal Dynasty Queensferry, on the main road, near B&Q 01244 830455 Indian */** Without doubt one of the best Indian meals you will ever have. One star if you leave out the usual 'trimmings' you can have with Indian food, two star if you don't. The price benefits from being away from Chester. Service is great as is the food, and there are Indian beers on draft to add to the experience.
Bensons Near Handbridge, above the Bear and Billet pub 01244 400112 Various ** Gorgeous food, spoilt a bit by no atmosphere at all.  No need to book as it never gets busy.
The Brasserie Hawarden, on the main road 01244 536353 Various **/*** The original Brasserie before the one in Chester popped up. Food is great, and there's a nice cozy atmosphere. Set menu Sunday to Thursday which offers great value.
The Cherry Valley Handbridge, Chester 01244 6783643 Chinese *** Good Chinese restaurants in Chester are like taxis - damn hard to get one !! This is about the best, and is reflected in the price. Take my advice and read the review for Elements (below).
Club Globe Boughton, by the canal 01244 340417 Various **** Don't expect to pay less than 80 for a simple meal for two.   This is an expensive place and the portions are very small. Quality and service is good, but the atmosphere is spoilt by few customers. They do special offers on a Monday, so avoid the weekend and save some money. You HAVE to book, but why is a mystery?
Dinos Pizzeria Under the Hotel Romano 01244 325091 Italian/Pizza ** Good food, well priced. Very relaxed and sometimes boisterous atmosphere. Popular spot for office nights out. NOT for a romantic two-some.
Dos Americanos Watergate Street 01244 347207 Tex Mex ** Fantastic food and atmosphere. Loads of Mexican beers.   You can't book most of the year and weekends are very busy.
Egerton Arms (Miller's Kitchen) Near the hospital and Premier Lodge Various */**  Fantastic food at great prices.  No booking, just turn up.  Adjoins a hotel, so avoid weekend evenings or you may have to wait a while. Despite being a restaurant chain, the food variety is top drawer, and the vegetarian and kids menu options are also much better than average.  Service is good.  You won't be disappointed.
Ego Over the road from the museum 01244 346512 Mediterranean *** Great food, but not too much of it !! Atmosphere and service are good. Do wonders with goats' cheese.
Elements Ellesmere Port, Cheshire Oaks, near Junc 10 of the M53 - Oriental */** Interesting concept ... different buffets during the day and weekend, ranging from 7 at lunchtime to 17 in the evening. Food is amazing, choice is fantastic.
Elliots Rufus Court - English **** Oh Lordy me, is this place expensive !! Choice is very limited, but the quality is excellent. There's no atmosphere at all, and the place is empty most of the time. If you are over 60 and want to avoid busy places with any 'bloody youngsters', then this is for you. Other than that, give it a miss. Rumors are that it may have closed down - I hope so !!
Francs Cuppin Street 01244 317952 French */** Very cozy, with authentic food.  Have some good offers during the week which will save money.
La Fontana Inside the Hotel Romano 01244 325091 Italian/ Mediterranean *** Not sure the ambience of this place matches the prices they want to charge.  The food however can't be faulted, it's just the price !! However, the bar is open late and you can stay till all hours, before asking them to get you a taxi.  A good night out even if a little expensive.
Frankie and Bennies Greyhound retail park, Chester and Cheshire Oaks, Ellesmere Port 01244 37577 Italian/ American *** Great food, but can be pricey for my liking for a chain.  Avoid the blue cheese burger - you'll still taste it 2 days later. Usually a lively atmosphere.
The Mediterranean Restaurant Rufus Court 01244 320004 I wonder !!! *** Food is OK, but the service is a little slow to be honest. Quite romantic for a twosome meal. Run a internet search before going, as they support many discount schemes.
Moules A Go Go Chester Rows 01244 348818 Claims to be French and Belgian.  Other than mayonnaise with chips, the Belgian influence was hard to spot? *** Very disappointing I'm afraid. Serve tiny portions on large plates, and the food does not match the price.  The mussels are nice enough, but I ordered a fancy sounding chicken dish, and got what seemed to be breaded chicken strips with mash potato! Good atmosphere and service though.
The Mill House Broughton Shopping Park - English Pub food ** Average pub grub, but massively over priced.  Personally I don't want to pay 10 for a simple meal in pub surroundings.  During the evenings and weekends, the pub is seemingly frequented by lots of rowdy "young drinkers". Give it a miss, you will be disappointed (and ripped off)
Mongolian Barbeque City Centre, near M&S 01244 311090 Not sure ?? * Interesting idea, you help yourself to different ingredients and then a chef cooks it all for you on a giant hot plate. And ..... no matter what ingredients you choose, it always tastes the same! Cheap enough, but give it a miss, you will be disappointed.
Nando's Cheshire Oaks, near the Cinema Can't book Chicken * If you don't like chicken, then go somewhere else, because they don't serve much more.  If you do, this place is great.  Atmosphere is good, the food is amazing. The price is good too and it won't cost you much more than 20 to feed and water a family of 3.
Paparazzi or Pastarazzi Next to the museum 01244 400029 Mainly Italian *** Great atmosphere and service. Drinks are pricey. You need to book way ahead for a weekend or occasion ,such as Valentines. Stick to pasta if you want a cheaper night out
Pizza Express Head down to Handbridge and on the right Hummmm !! **/***  If you want small over- priced but gorgeous pizza served in very nice surroundings, this is for you.  Not kid friendly at all.  For me, pizza was NOT intended to be eaten like this, it is fun food, not posh nosh.  But that's my issue!
Raffles Near the cross on the rows 01244 342002 Chinese */** Same people who run the Slowboat, but a different idea. You pay a set price and can order as many dishes as you like (one by one). Nice food and good city centre spot. Worth a visit.
Rotate Behind the Boat Museum in Ellesmere Port 0151 355 1163 Mediterranean including pasta **/*** As hidden gems go, they don't get much more hidden or gem like than this.  A small place serving the most amazing food right on the waterfront.  Atmosphere is good, even though it is never full. Service is top notch.
The Royal Oak Kinnerton - English **/*** A bit expensive for pub food, but quality is great and portion size is more than enough. Very popular (hence the price?)
Ruan Orchid Lower Bridge Street 01244 400661 Thai *** Pricey, but amazing food. Atmosphere is a little quiet, so not the place for a boisterous night out. Busy at weekends. Can get very hot, needs air conditioning.  Avoid special occasions such as Valentines, as you only have the table for a limited time which is just pure greed to me.
Samsi Yakitori Bar Watergate Street near the Guildhall 01244 344883 Japanese ***/**** Hungry? If yes, then go somewhere else, because it will cost you a fortune to fill your belly here. If you want an authentic different meal, but aren't fussy about surroundings or portion size, then this place is spot on. Tip - Elements (see above) add Japanese food to the buffet in the evening.
The Slowboat Frodsham Street, Chester, above Iceland 01244 317873 Chinese ** Average quality for a Chinese restaurant. Good atmosphere. Popular weekend 'after drinks' spot. Sunday buffet is to die for.  Do a fantastic Chinese New Year party.
The Spinning Wheel Broughton, on The Warren 01244 531068 English/ Various ** Award winning food. Pub surroundings which don't slightly match the prices, but you will not be able to fault the quality or portions. Great beer choice. MUST book !!  See Mike's guide to Broughton.
La Tasco Opposite the museum 01244 400887 Spanish Tapas ** Fantastic atmosphere, and an ideal place to go with friends. Not suited for a romantic night out.  Order 3-4 dishes each and a jug of San Miguel, and then share it all out. No bookings taken and gets very busy after 8 at weekends
Zizzi Near the amphitheatre 01244 341414 Italian **/*** Trying to be a swish happening city centre 'place to be', and falling short.  Food is basic, with a distinct lack of meat in the pasta dishes.  Service is 'unrushed'. Could do better.  Good meatballs though.

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