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“Farewell to the BEST restaurant in Lancaster”
Review of Bistro 26 - CLOSED

Bistro 26
Price range: US$20 - US$82
Cuisines: Contemporary, British
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine, Romantic, Business meetings, Special Occasion Dining
Dining options: After-hours, Dinner, Reservations
Description: Mark Cavanagh aims at Bistro26 to make his guests feel welcome and experience great seasonal food. The kitchen specialises in modern British cuisine using locally sourced produce wherever possible along with homemade desserts, ice creams and breads. The menus are supplemented by daily changing seasonal specials including Bowland fillet, Scotforth lamb, Morecambe Bay shrimps and Trough of Bowland game. Bistro26 is situated in the heart of the historic city of Lancaster and can be discovered close to the Sun Inn, along the Sun Street.If it is a quiet romantic table for two, a business dinner or a celebration meal, Bistro26 will be delighted to welcome you.
Reviewed 7 September 2013

If Trip Advisor is listening, can you PLEASE tell us why bistro 26 ranked so low despite having one of the best (and deserved) record of reviews on your site?
It makes a mockery of the whole thing when the rankings seem to be so distorted. I'm an avid contributor and eating out is one of my passions. Bistro 26 never recovered from the sudden and unjustified plummet in the rankings and, as such, a talented chef has lost his livelihood and everything he ever worked for. The question has been raised before but Trip Advisor seems to be deaf and unresponsive despite wielding such power.
I have lost faith in Trip Advisor as a reliable gauge to quality dining but continue to give fair and honest appraisals in the hope that discerning diners will be able to benefit.
It’s a great shame. Please take note.

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5  Thank CarlJ7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviews (139)
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6 - 10 of 139 reviews

Reviewed 23 July 2013

Went there last week for only the second time in 18 months for a mini-works night out. It may look a bit out-of-the way up a side street, but oh, my gosh - the food was really good.

The entrance to the restaurant leves a bit to be desired, but once in and sat down ( near a window which was a lovely touch ) and first bottle of ( excellent ) house wine later we were all tucking into great starters. So nice to have a decent range of specials and menu items that you can swap accordingly.

The service was good, if a little unhurried as the place was pretty full, but waitress was pleasant and the owner ( Mark? ) came out to answer a question on the mains as we didn't want the usual well done ' Rare' steak that most british chefs seem only capable of.

wine list ( as one who enjoys a decent bottle and knows the difference ) was good, well priced and covered most common choices - the Merlot we wanted was out of stock but they transferred me to a stunning Cabernet/Merlot from the same producer that tasted like a really top Pomerol at a fraction of the cost.

mains were good, with decent portion sizes - the puddings looked good but most of us went for cheese and another bottle of the stunning red

overall, this was a great restaurant - buzzing a little but not over noisy or cramped, wine and food choices were excellent and well executed, friendly, well priced and comfortable.

Having eaten at a few places in lancaster over the past couple of years this stood out for me, not only because it IS so good, but also because it was consistent with my previous visit and the visits of my guests.

only drawback was the entrance and finding some place to park - other than that a good night.

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1  Thank neil r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 July 2013 via mobile

Mark - it was wonderful. Every meal we've ever had has been amazing. All nine of us who dined tonight enjoyed our tantalising starters; the mains were superb - all off the board and the desserts were delicious! Thanks to the staff for their friendly, accommodating service! We have always appreciated the lovely, relaxed welcome from the staff; the recommendations from you as the chef and the good value for the top-quality dishes you have served over the years. The choice on the menus has always been diverse; you have been (quite rightly) incredibly proud of sourcing local produce and your amazing cooking has never disappointed. You have helped our family create many wonderful memories for which we will always be grateful! Thank you to you - Mark, and each and every one of your staff. Bistro 26 has always been 5 stars in our eyes!

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Thank JamesandMichelle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 July 2013

We visited Lancaster this week for our daughters graduation and having checked the reviews we thought we would visit Bistro 26 as we had not been there before. The reviews looked so good but oh were we disappointed. The fact that Lancaster is a student centred city and we have had some great times there over the last three years the restaurant had not picked up on this at all. It was very quiet there and there were only three tables in use... we could only order off the board and not the menu and when we did we couldn't have our first choice as they had run out and there were only about 12 of us in there. We did not find the staff particularly friendly and the kitchen looked dirty from where we were sitting. The food could not be faulted but the rest of the evening was poor and bearing in mind we had such a lovely day it was very disappointing and the celebrating came to a bit of an abrupt end which was a shame as Lancaster is normally so good! I would not recommend this place to anyone as I thought that it lacked atmosphere and was no more than a glorified café. I have never completed a negative entry on to trip advisor before and I like to let people know about great places to visit but I make this entry in the hope that I can prevent people from making the same mistake that we made.

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3  Thank Julia264
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 June 2013

I was one of 4 friends who traveled to Lancaster to dine (on Saturday 8th June) at the invitation of a local lass who uses this Restaurant regularly. I can see why, the 5 of us had a fab evening. The restaurant is modern & has a sophisticated feel, without being stuffy or "posh". The Menu was lovely and the choices were all very tempting, so much so that it was difficult to know what to chose! The wine, recommended by our host (since she had tasted it at a wine tasting event at the Restaurant) was delicious. The service was professional and discreet and I belatedly noticed that the kitchen was visible from the restaurant, but obviously not a distraction. The complimentary pre-starter was a nice touch & got the meal off to a good start. I had the belly pork for my main and it was delicious & the portions generous. Unfortunately I couldn't manage a desert, but i could see my companions all enjoyed theirs and they looked very good. The Chef/Owner came out to speak to us at the end of the evening which was a nice personal touch and I did notice that he had spoken to other diners too. The bill was reasonable for the standard of food and service, not a "cheap" night, but an excellent dinner & a very enjoyable "grown up" evening. I understand that there are regular themed nights and I am sure if i was local I would be booking up well in advance. I am really looking forward to my next visit, as are my companions. Every town/city needs a Bistro 26. I live in Exeter and don't think we have anything that really compares as far as the standard of food, service and value for money are concerned. I urge you to try the Bistro for yourself, you will not be disappointed!

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

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