On Wednesday, I was lucky enough to head down to the recently refurbished Brache Beefeater in Luton, to get a feel of the restaurant following a huge makeover.
I was beyond excited, first of all because it's so nice to have a blog opportunity close to home and to focus on somewhere so lovely and local - especially with all the bad rep Luton used to get.
Secondly, because everyone I've spoken to has always raved about the Brache and I'd been eager to visit for a while now, following their makeover and to see if the restaurant had improved since the last time I'd been there.
The last (and only, actually) time I'd visited the Brache in Luton had been for a work Christmas meal a few years back, and although it was enjoyable, I wasn't overly impressed. The food was nice, but I remembered the look of the restaurant being quite dark and crowded. So although I did enjoy it, my experience there wasn't really anything to write home about!
So obviously I was really glad to have the opportunity to visit the restaurant following its makeover.
Straight away, I was impressed upon arrival with not only ample parking but such a pretty car park! I know it's not a necessity to have a pretty car park but let's face it, many places just have something basic and not nice to look at. The Brache Beefeater had lots of trees and bushes and it just generally made the building seem a bit approachable.
Inside, I found myself continually impressed. The makeover had given the building a world of good - it's now spacious and bright with a modern bar but very homely seating and deco. It was ever so welcoming and although it was the perfect basis for a family meal, I think some parts were a little romantic, too.
My Nan immediately mentioned how nice it was that the waiter asked her if she was okay with us sitting upstairs. Although this isn't something that applies to me personally, I do know the plight of there being many stairs/not enough seats for the elderly when out and about. She was over the moon that he bothered to check her ability, even though she was absolutely fine with seating upstairs. It was the small gesture that counted.
Upstairs was perhaps more spacious then downstairs and had beautiful large bay-like windows overlooking the many trees in the car park.
The decor upstairs was lovely too - enough to peak your interest - for example there was a lovely wall piece explaining the different types of chopping knives - but not enough to be over the top.
The food itself was absolutely delicious. I went for the grilled chicken, bacon, cheese and avocado burger which came with fries and coleslaw and, as I love my mushrooms, I ordered the crispy flat cap mushrooms as a side for the table. It was all so, so good. I had no idea bacon and avocado could work together so well!
I'm also not generally a fan of grilled chicken but I was pleasantly surprised. Even on its own, the chicken had tons of flavour and even a bit of a kick to it.
My brother had the smothered chicken melt and my Nan fish and chips - and both were thoroughly impressed. The portions were very generous too and unfortunately I could not finish all of mine.
I'd definitely say the food was a ten out of ten!
Although we didn't go for a steak personally, we found there was tons of choice on the menu. The steak menu was varied which is good, but we also found there wasn't 'just' steak, obviously, and we had a lot to choose from.
The service from the staff was also what made our visit. From checking my Nan was okay to be seated upstairs to serving us promptly, I couldn't fault them. I also found that they genuinely seemed happy to welcome us - as I know often when being served in a restaurant it can feel like a member of staff is serving you but just going through the motions - but not here. The staff were lovely.
I also have to say there were lots of toilets too! Yes, the restaurant is large but many times I've been to a large restaurant and found not many facilities so this was a bonus. Plus they were kept clean and tidy.
Overall I found my visit to The Brache Beefeater spot on. Often I go to a restaurant and have a great time but tend to have just one or two niggles like having to wait too long for food or the staff seeming a bit off, but I honestly couldn't fault The Beefeater in the slightest.
I'll definitely be going back.
For those of you who might want to take my word for it and visit yourselves, I have very kindly been offered an exclusive code for 25% off! That's as good a reason to visit!
If you'd like to take advantage of this generous offer, please note down the code 588114033 and present it upon arrival.
I'd also like to thank the team at The Beefeater for letting me pop down and visit - I'm already looking at the menu online and deciding what I want for my next visit soon!
*Please note, although we were kindly invited along to The Brache and offered a voucher to cover our food bill in exchanged for an honest review, all views are entirely my own and have not been swayed.