Reviewed by Laura Langton
As a family, we love to eat out, and have eaten at Frankie & Benny’s quite often. We love the choice available and enjoy the relaxing American-Italian dining atmosphere. When we heard that the menu has had a massive overhaul, we were both intrigued and slightly unsure. We loved the original menu, and didn’t know how they could improve on this… but wow, have they!
Myself, my husband Pete, my husband’s little sister, Tiah, who is 10 and our 10 month old son, Jacob, arrived at the restaurant at 5pm and it was relatively quiet. The very friendly waiter showed us to our table, giving us different options as to where we would like to be seated. I liked this, as some restaurants cram in customers, so you feel like your meal involves the people on the table next to you, not so in Frankie & Benny’s, there is lots of space!
Once we were seated, it was time to look at the new menu. It is amazing! So much to choose from! There is a choice of 13 starters, as well as 2 sharing platters with loads of variety. We decided to go for a garlic bread to share, but with hubby being fussy, we asked for half with cheese, half with tomato, our awkwardness was no issue and our starter was delivered quickly and we were each given a little sachet containing wet wipes, which was really handy (no pun intended) for our messy selves.
The children were given an activity pack when they were seated, and this kept the 10 year old (and us!) entertained throughout the meal and included puzzles, pictures to colour, colouring pencils and a board game. It was impressive as we are used to the usual crayons and picture to colour, but with stickers and pop out figures, it really was a different activity pack to what we would expect.
Next we were on to our main course. With over 60 dishes to choose from, the menu is extensive, with unique dishes, there really is something for everyone, with choices of pizza, calzone, pasta, salads, meat, fish, burgers and more… Pete found it difficult to choose, but FINALLY decided on the chicken pitta pocket with Louisiana hot sauce, I chose the BBQ Chicken and Ribs. Jacob was asleep, so we left him to snooze, but there are Ella’s kitchen pouches on the menu which would have been perfect for him. Tiah had the Junior Ribs and Fries. The Junior menu was really good, it was £7.75 and included dessert and a drink. Drink options for Tiah were the usual Pepsi, Tango and juice, but they also had 3 fruit cocktails included on the menu. She managed 2 of them, the Refresher and Sketch Quencher. They were delicious and I could happily drink them myself! As it was a fruit cocktail, it made her meal feel so special, she loved it!
Our main courses were brought over to us so quick, we never got to finish the mini board game in Tiah’s pack. The food was lovely, freshly cooked and piping hot with large portion sizes, including Tiah’s junior meal. The waiter was not joking when he wished me good luck, my ribs and chicken were huge and very well priced at £15.95, it included fries, coleslaw and corn on the cob. It was so tasty, I did struggle, but managed to eat it all, how could I leave any when it was THAT good! Pete was happy that his hot sauce had a real kick to it. His pitta pocket was full to the brim with chicken, hot sauce and salad and also came with fries, coleslaw and corn on the cob and was a very reasonable £10.95. He washed this down with a bottle of cold Peroni. He was slightly disappointed that they had sold out of Samuel Adams beer, but there were lots of other bottles and draught beers available. Tiah can be a fussy eater, so when her half rack of ribs, fries and salad was brought to the table, I doubted that she would finish it with it being so big, but she ate every last bit! It was a big portion for the junior menu, which I was impressed with. Tiah made sure she kept room for dessert though, she had spotted the Ice Cream Candy Shop picture and was desperate to try it. A bowl containing 2 scoops of ice cream (she chose chocolate and strawberry, but vanilla was also available) was brought to her on a tray, surrounded by a jug of chocolate sauce, a bowl of marshmallows, 3 mini milk bottles of sweets, popping candy and a sweet bag for her to take away anything she didn’t get through, it really was like a candy buffet and she thoroughly enjoyed it! This was £1.95 on the children’s menu, but she could have had a brownie sundae, ice cream sundae or fruit salad that was included in the £7.75 for her junior meal.
Pete had the chocolate pancake, which is a lighter option on the dessert menu at only 200 calories, but tasted so amazing that it shocked him that it was a ‘healthier’ option. Priced at £3.45, it is also relatively cheap!
We had a lovely experience in the restaurant. It has a lovely atmosphere and the music is the perfect level, so that you can hear it, but it isn’t overpowering. We loved the family atmosphere and it is the little touches such as nappies and talc in the baby changing facilities that make it so much easier.
Whilst we were there, it was someone’s birthday. The birthday song came on as staff brought out the cake and all gathered round to sing and set off poppers, making a big fuss of the little girl. Again, this was perfect and not overpowering to other diners, and the little girl loved it.
All the staff were lovely and couldn’t have been more helpful to us. Our waiter told us when we had finished that he had only been with Frankie & Benny’s a week, which we couldn’t believe as he was so professional, friendly and efficient, you could tell that everybody really enjoyed their work, which makes for a really positive dining experience. We will be visiting again, as there were so many items on the menu that we wanted to try, I do feel that you could go to Frankie & Benny’s over and over and not get bored of the new menu, it is that extensive and varied. We would give it 5/5…Tiah would like to give 6/5 for her fruit cocktails and dessert though.
Frankie & Benny’s now have an app which gives users 25% off on Mondays and kids eat for free on Friday. There is also a great Family Feast meal deal on offer at all times which is £25 and feeds 3-4 people and consists of a pizza of your choice, pasta (3 choices) and unlimited fries which is great value!! We have downloaded this app for our next visit.
For more information, to view the new menu or to book a table visit
Frankie & Benny’s, Robin Park, Wigan, WN5 0UL | 01942 213302