Basildon - Festival Leisure - Ryan Review
This Nando's is on the Festival Leisure park, which has no fewer than three hotels, a cinema, bowling alley and other pubs/eateries. There are hundreds of free spaces - so easy to get to.
Arrived here around 9:30pm on a Wednesday evening and so needless to say it had quietened down and so there were plenty of tables free. However... I stood at the door for 4 minutes before anybody came to greet me and even then it was a girl (who was very apologetic) who put down her cooking tongs to come greet me. As she walked me to every single table, she realised that all 17 free tables had empty glasses, food, napkins, plates or bottles still left on them. She even said "Well this isn't very good, is it?" The other staff clearly had not been tidying away the tables! After a bit of cleaning, I was put on the table right next to the pane of glass by the entrance. Afraid the staff get a 2 on this occasion.
There was no queue to order, but even though there were only four orders put through th till from when I arrived, it was 23 minutes later before I got my food. I (and others) could see it was sat under the heatlamps. I am far too reserved to say anything... but this was Basildon, so other couples piped up "Yow gaan bring dat chicken over or wot?" I think I heard one of them say... And alas, it was delivered.
The chips were very hot and crispy (so maybe we were waiting for them), but the rice had gone below lukewarm and the chicken had dried out. Nothing several dollops of sauce couldn't fix, but would have been nice to get a juicy breast...
The branch itself is not all that big. Long and narrow, with extra seating outside the front and also outside the left (which is inside the cinema). Tables/chairs to your left as you go into and booth seating sort of at the back-right behind the raised small wall (by the drinks machines) running along the middle of the restaurant. There were a few canvas paintings, with nice spotlights running along half the restaurant. The toilets were spick and span too - but sadly, because of the mess and because the "do's" in the Nando's sign outside not working, this averages out to a 3.