This months review was quite a rare find, with so many chain restaurants popping up over Telford it was great to find a unique family run restaurant with a blast from the past! Good Times Bistro has an amazing 70’s retro style dining room, a great deal of effort has gone into creating this restaurant with some amazing pieces of retro furniture, funky accessories, classic tableware and bold decor.
Good Times Bistro is situated on the High Street in Madeley, so there is usually plenty of on-street parking available. The restaurant opened in August last year so is still a relatively new restaurant but after seeing so many positive reviews on Tripadvisor we thought we should check it out for ourselves. Owner Pam Clewley runs the restaurant along with her family who all get involved in some way, her son Alan is head chef, her son Dan is drinks waiter and her daughter-in-law Colette is a waitress. Pam has plenty of experience of running a restaurant as she previously owned a restaurant in America for over 4 years.
Not only does the surroundings go back to the 70’s but the music was very well planned with a great mix of fun songs.
On arrival to the restaurant we were immediately greeted by Colette and shown to our table where a small glass of bucks fizz was served along with a selection of nibbles including olives, peppers, pretzels and crisps, a lovely welcome touch.
After placing our drinks order with Dan we looked through the menu to see what sort of dishes were on offer. There are some very classic dishes on the starters menu including prawn cocktail, homemade soup and pate but there was also a choice of a variety of tapas dishes which you could order for one person or for two to share. Nik decided he would try the ‘Good Times Prawn Cocktail’ at £5.95 and I chose ‘The Rough with the Smooth Pate’ at £5.50.
Both our starters were good sized portions and well presented on retro fish shaped glass plates. Nik’s prawn cocktail had plenty of plump juicy prawns with a lovely Marie Rose sauce, pieces of smoked salmon added extra flavour and it was served with brown bread and butter, Nik was very pleased with his choice and soon devoured it all.
My pate had a great mix of a smooth chicken liver parfait and also a course meaty pate and was served with a lovely homemade red onion marmalade and just the right amount of toasted triangles. I really enjoyed my dish and it was nice to have to the two different pates which were both delicious.
The choice of mains had a good selection including, a fish dish, steak of the day, steak pie, a pasta dish, a couple of vegetarian options and some house specials. I ordered ‘Al’s Famous Lasagne’ at £12.50 and Nik decided to try one of the house specials which we were told was the most popular dish, ‘The Dijonaise’ at £15.50.
To accompany our main dishes we had a large bowl of mixed oriental vegetables, honey glazed carrots and some herby new potatoes and we also had some cheesy bacon and onion mash. These side dishes are included in the price of your meal and change regularly.
I am a fan of a good homemade lasagne and I certainly wasn’t disappointed with Al’s. It was a generous portion with a tasty rich beef ragu with peppers, onions and garlic, you could tell this had been slow cooked as the pasta was lovely and soft. The vegetables had just the right bite and the cheesy mash was amazing.
With the Dijonaise you have the choice of having this with either chicken or with portobello mushrooms. Nik chose the chicken and it was cooked with mushrooms, shallots and a touch of garlic flamed in brandy and was all finished in a creamy sauce with a subtle flavour of Dijon mustard. Nik said the dish was a lovely mix of tastes and textures and worked wonderfully together.
Although we were both rather full after our meal we couldn’t resist a homemade dessert. Nik opted straight away for the ‘Sticky Toffee Pudding’ at £4.50 and I ordered the ‘New York Style Baked Cheesecake’ also £4.50.
My cheesecake had been made by Dan and he had done a superb job, it was deliciously creamy and the biscuit base was just the right consistency, not too crunchy, not too soft, just perfect!
Nik’s said his sticky toffee pudding had a gorgeous salted caramel sauce, he had opted to have custard with his dish – it disappeared so quickly I didn’t get the chance to try it for myself even though I did share a small bite of my cheesecake with him!
Currently they are only open Thursdays to Saturdays so it is best to book in advance, but if you have a special occasion with a group booking they will open on other nights for you – please ring for details. The restaurant can comfortably seat up to 30 people.
If you like good home cooked food, a relaxed atmosphere and fancy trying somewhere a little out of the ordinary then you really should book a table at Good Times Bistro.
Reviewed by Fleur & Nik Abel