Bedford - Damien Review
Nando’s 92 was in Bedford, a place that I knew little about, except for that I see the name up as the final destination of several trains that run through my area. The train service seemed to be running a slightly shoddy weekend service, but with a couple of changes, we made it to Bedford for a late lunch.
The Nando’s is about a fifteen minute walk from the station, passing through the shopping areas on the way. Being a Saturday lunchtime, I was surprised and impressed to find the place not even half busy. What I was less than impressed about was the staff acting as if the place was busy. Our group of six was ignored for over a minute before a member of staff strolled over to break the bad news that there’d be a wait. All of the spare tables we could see had been reserved for a large group. More waiting commenced, once in a while a staff member asking if we were queuing to order (due to the bad placement of the waiting area). More people arrived and were also asked to wait. Different members of staff gave us different waiting estimates and eventually we were given a table number to order to, though not sit at.
The table number we were given was wrong, but this was not really an issue. What was an issue was that the entire back of the restaurant was empty. Not only that, it stayed this way for the duration of our meal. The staff were clearly operating quite a low limit to the amount of customers allowed to be seated at any given time. It was possibly due to ordering before sitting, but the food seemed to come out really quick once we did get to our table. It wasn't all that good though. My portion of chips was tiny and the chicken in my extra hot pitta was dry and chewy. Other issues included weird-looking sweet potato mash and a creamy mash that had big dry bits in it. So hard that a knife and fork wouldn't cut through them. Some of us tried the new fillet steak options, which were great and cooked to close perfection.
The restaurant has a lot of art pieces shoved in every possible gap, including quite a few things around the entrance, which I got a more than ample chance to have a good look at. There were also automatic blinds on all the windows. These kept going up and down, which was amusing enough as something to pass the time while waiting to be served, but I’d imagine it’d have gotten annoying, were we allowed a window table. Also be warned. There are two steps just behind the door to the toilets.
We didn't stay long in Bedford, but if we had, I’m sure it wouldn't have taken long to find somewhere better than their Nando’s.