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“Disappointing - poor service and mediocre food”
Review of The Blue Bell Inn

The Blue Bell Inn
Ranked #3 of 14 Restaurants in Rothley
Certificate of Excellence
Dining options: After-hours, Breakfast, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: After-hours, Breakfast, Reservations
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Having browsed the menus on the website, we – a party of 5 - booked a table for a Sunday at the Bluebell Inn for a family member’s birthday treat. We included two meat eaters, two pescatarians and one strict vegetarian (the birthday girl). The day looked promising on arrival as the atmosphere was cosy and bustling, and we were led to a beautiful snug by a glowing fire. Things descended fast, as outlined below:
• There was a vegetarian option indicated on the Sunday Roasts menu on the website (albeit variable from week to week), but there was no vegetarian Sunday Roast option on the day. On enquiry we were told it wasn’t a mistake, there was in fact no option. They could do us a regular roast but without the meat, but with extra veggies. This would, however (confusingly), cost us extra, and the potatoes would be roasted in duck fat. We were given the impression that this would be an inconvenience. Disappointingly, our vegetarian had only a risotto as her option
• As pescatarians, two of us decided to opt for fish and chips. On the website this featured on the Spring Menu at £12.50. However, we were told that it had now been incorporated into the Fixed Price menu and if we wanted it only as a single course option (we likely would) it would be £15
• The entire Fixed Price menu on the website was cheaper than that in the restaurant. On enquiry, and confusingly, we were told that ‘the website prices are slightly different’. We were in fact repeatedly told that the website was ‘slightly different’ but offered no explanation – nor concern - as to why the website menus and prices were not honoured
• When the meals showed up, the meat eaters were brought an impressive bowl of vegetables for their roasts. We asked for some serving spoons as none were brought, and were told in an irritable tone ‘I’ll have to check, but we’re running low on cutlery’
• The meat eaters found their roast dinners were small and underwhelming
• One of us had a giant cookie in a pan for desert. The base of this was burned and inedible. On relating this, the dish was simply taken away, with no apology, no replacement, and ultimately no deduction from the bill
• Two of us had cappuccinos, which - unsurprisingly by now - were lukewarm

To summarise, both the quality of the food and the service were poor, and the prices subsequently way too high. Whilst we were quite clear that we were unhappy with the above aspects of our meal, the preoccupied staff were clear that they did not care, giving us no manner of compensation nor apology, just consistently brusque and apparently well-rehearsed responses (we later heard an adjacent table have the same dialogue on the lack of a vegetarian Roast). This was such a disappointing experience as we’d had high hopes for The Bluebell Inn. It’s a shame, as the venue itself is lovely and has so much potential.

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    • Service
    • Food
Thank 11Starlight
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (310)
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5 - 9 of 310 reviews

Reviewed 2 weeks ago

We were visiting my brother, for my birthday..I have always had a great meal here. The menu is varied, reasonably priced.. and our choice of Chicken Balentine, rabbit and hake, was so tasty, fresh flavours, cannot fault the food or service..wine was great too. I love the woodburner smell as you walk in, the décor, a traditional English pub! Cant wait for my next visit !

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    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank JackyH50
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

I had a crab fish cake to start which was quite tasty but very dry, desperately needed a good bowl of Thai Sweet Chilli Sauce to go with it, then would have been quite good. I had fish, chips and puréed peas for main, the fish was tasteless and the chips were dry only OK element were the puréed peas. Second visit, last time was better but no great shakes, I doubt I will return

Thank Stuart A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

We went here on a Saturday lunchtime with the whole family for my sister's birthday. We arrived at 12.30pm and there was no parking at all which was frustrating. The venue itself is rustic and pleasant - much like the others in the chain. The food was excellent - burgers, pork belly, kids meals - no complaints at all. The only downside was the service. It was incredibly slow to order and even more so to get the food which is stressful when there are 5 children in the party. The staff generally seemed not to be concerned about the delays and weren't apologetic at all. Fortunately we weren't in a rush and the food was good enough to win us over.

Thank Lawyer13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 March 2018 via mobile

We visited recently as a family, weeknight visit.

The place was busy as the food was tasty and arrived in good time. However the service wasn’t great. We has to chase up drinks twice. The main issues appeared to be that our table didn’t have a dedicated waiter/ess like you expect. The teams drinks knowledge was also poor when asked basic questions. Judging by other reviews this may of been a one off and I’d visit again based on the food quality.

Thank Jamie_f236
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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