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“Simply Sublime”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of St Helena

St Helena
Ranked #1 of 411 Restaurants in Bedford
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$58 - US$58
Cuisines: Contemporary
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings, Local cuisine, Special Occasion Dining, Romantic, Groups
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, After-hours, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Off-Street Parking, Full Bar, Outdoor Seating, Parking Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Street Parking, Validated Parking, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Description: Ideal For romantic dinner,Special Occasions,Bussiness lunches or just a Night out. £45 is for a 5 course fine dining dinner menu
Bedford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
30 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Simply Sublime”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 June 2014

The moment you walk through the gates at St. Helena's you are made to feel special. Browsing the delights on the menu whilst sipping Champagne in the beautifully secluded garden starts off the evening perfectly. The Staff are very attentive and Raff and Frank are the perfect hosts. When it finally comes to the food well what can I say, simply stunning. A truly exquisite experience with wonderful flavour combinations. The sheer elegance of each dish presented to you shows the outstanding quality and the taste is just sublime. This was my first visit and I shall definitely be back. I'm kicking myself for not visiting before..clearly my loss! An absolutely amazing dining experience made special by Great Hosts and a brilliant Chef. Thank you. Debs

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank DWToggy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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710 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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    16
    5
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Bedfordshire
Level Contributor
25 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Three course set menu? More like six!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 June 2014

I have a confession to make. I have lived in Bedford and surrounding area for nearly 40 years, but have never visited this restaurant. I always thought it was too pretentious and the staff were obsequious. Well maybe they can be if people want that, but we were treated as we wanted to be - politely but with no fawning. Oh, and while we are talking about staff, getting them to fold peoples' napkins when they leave them on the table to nip to the loo - that is not very hygienic for the staff, is it? Minus a point there. I digress. I booked a table for five on a Thursday evening to celebrate a Special Birthday. I had mentioned it when booking, but forgot to say on arrival. Someone had remembered though, because one of the many members of staff who looked after us asked some subtle questions (bit too subtle - she was treated to quite a discourse about the day's events...) to ascertain whose birthday it was and what age they were. I have to admit that I was attracted by the whole "Professional Masterchef Finalist" thing, because the food on the show always looks like the sort of stuff I would like to eat, but not to cook. Apart from foam. I do not like the look of foam. Anyway, we ordered and then the waitress brought us freshly baked bread (wild garlic) and rolls. Then the Chef's appetiser, which was tomato, but not as you know it. Then we had the courses we had ordered (and unlike my expectations, they were a decent size), then tea/coffee and petit fours. Complete with a "happy **th birthday" iced one for my husband. So all in all a great experience. We were in the conservatory which was lovely, on a round table. For what it was I thought it was good value for money, and a really lovely experience. I would have emailed the restaurant direct, but cannot find an email address on their website. So - if you are listening St Helena - keep up the good work, and thanks!

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank sootysmith13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Northampton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
29 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“Welcome Inn”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 June 2014

From start to finish the atmosphere was warm and friendly with a family run feeling. This is a very high class restaurant but with an ambience that put us at our ease. Posh but not pretentious. The food is highly recommended and we were feeling nicely full at the end of the meal. We were made to feel that our visit was a personal thing for the restaurateur and the arreverderci seemed genuine.

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank andyayres8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Northampton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
306 reviews
164 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 114 helpful votes
“Time for a Star”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 June 2014

There are many things that are surprising about St Helena, but why this restaurant has been missed form the Michelin guide in any form is one of them.
The food is presented in the most beautiful way with exquisite attention to detail from the amuse-bouche to the petite fours there was nothing out of place. I had Moroccan Spiced Quail and Smoked Aubergine Purée with Confit Tomatoes, Yoghurt, Fresh Grape and Preserved Lemons followed by the Fillet Of Turbot with Courgettes, Pickled Shallots, Pea Purée, Shellfish Sauce and Vanilla Oil and my wife had Pressed Chicken with Pea Mousse, Raw Peas, Mushroom Ketchup, Confit, Hen’s Egg Yolk, Wild Garlic Emulsion and Crispy Chicken Skin followed by Fillet of Dry Aged Beef with Roasted Red Onion Marmalade, Broccoli, Blue Cheese Fritter and Fondant Potato, all were delicious. For desserts I had Honey Parfait, Poached Gooseberries, with Elderflower Jelly and Honeycomb whilst my wife had the Strawberry Cheesecake, Strawberry Jelly, Fresh Mint and Strawberry Sorbet.
The staff were excellent, both attentive and yet not obsequious, engaging yet not over bearing and willing to take the time to chat to us in a very friendly and relaxed manner.
This is a place that one should keep a secret and enjoy, but with such quality and the talents of Head Chef Steve Barringer word is going to get out.
Keep surprising people and they will keep coming back to be delighted in their droves, Brilliant, simply Brilliant.

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Likesmifood
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bedford, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“What a hidden gem”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 June 2014

My first visit to this hidden gem and certainly not my last. From the moment we stepped through the gates we could not have been more looked after than if we had been at The Savoy. Starting off in the lovely garden sipping our Champers , it was the start of a taste bud extravaganza.
Appetiser so full of flavour, then on to the Scallop s with curried onion fritter ...oh heaven , then on to my main of rump of lamb, the crispy shoulder with fennel tasted divine. I don't often get to a sweet but there was no way I was missing out on Caramel mousse ,the lightest doughnut and toffee apple finished with a sublime vanilla milk shake . The little extras of a liqueur and yummy chocolates with our coffee brought a lovely end to our meal. The wine was lovely and the house Champagne was toasty and smooth.

Thank you Raf and Frank for a memorable evening and Steve go for your M Star your food deserves to be celebrated . Angela

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
4 Thank Angela D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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