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“Good size portions” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Bodean's BBQ - Tower Hill

Bodean's BBQ - Tower Hill
16 Byward Street, London EC3R 5BA, England (City of London)
020 7488 3883
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Ranked #1,525 of 17,879 Restaurants in London
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Price range: $9 - $18
Cuisines: American, Sandwiches, Barbecue, Hamburgers
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Large groups
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Breakfast, Delivery, Late Night, Reservations, Takeout
Neighborhood: City of London
Wigan, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Good size portions”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2014

We went on a Friday night abs only had to wait 45 minutes to get a table. The staff were friendly. The portions were big but not the greatest quality but still good. Worth a visit if you're a meat lover not so much if you're not.

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754 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
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English first
Milton Keynes, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Wonderful”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2014 via mobile

Went with a friend and we shared the Bodeans platter between us, perfect amount of food for 2 people without leaving anything behind!
We also dabbled in some cocktails which were TO DIE FOR. The Trifle cocktail was amazing!
Reasonable price with good and prompt service :) will be returning!

Visited January 2014
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London, United Kingdom
1 review
“What a disappointment...”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2014

This was my first, and probably only, visit to Bodean's. I arrived at 9pm on a Saturday night. Yes, they were busy, but that doesn't excuse the service. I was seated at the "bar", which was actually the small counter at the window. I waited more than 10 minutes for someone to come and take an order. When I ordered, all I asked for was a bowl of clam chowder, a regular caesar salad, glass of water and a bottled soda. The drinks arrived after about 5 minutes, and 10 minutes after that I got a bowl of tragically bland clam chowder with garlic bread that barely tasted of garlic. The salad arrived about 30 minutes later and I was given a large instead of the smaller one I had ordered. I asked if it was the regular and the reply was "It's a large, I put through a regular, but they made it this way for some reason." The salad consisted of limp lettuce, practically drowning in way too much very watery dressing. I could barely eat half of it, not just because I wasn't very hungry, it was just terrible. Two guys who arrived after me and were seated at the actual bar were already finishing their pulled pork meals before my salad ever arrived, while two guys who arrived just after them who were seated at the window next to me actually ended up leaving because no one ever came to take their orders. I'd heard such good things about this place, and so many items on the menu seemed very tempting, but this visit was such a let down that I don't think I'll bother going back.

  • Visited January 2014
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Food
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Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Absolutely Brilliant”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2014 via mobile

The food was to die for! We were a party of 12, everyone devoured their food and complemented how great it was. The only down side was we arrived half an hour late and our table had been given away, despite when making the booking I told them we might be late. The front of house member of staff claimed I had been phoned in the morning and 5 times subsequently that evening, which I was somewhat suspicious about as my phone had only the one missed call from them which was 10 mins prior to our arrival, which admittedly I had missed. Otherwise it would have been the full 5 stars!!! Highly recommended, but make sure you turn up on time, it's busy for good reason.

Visited January 2014
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London
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Bing Bong Bodeans”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2014

It's rare I'm exercised enough to write reviews (good or bad), but the cynical mediocrity of my lunch at Bodean's has proved the catalyst.

To be clear, it was all very, very average. But with its self-annointed "famed", "renowned", etc, epithets, I was expecting something a bit less, well, ordinary. The narrow facade and claustrophobic entrance (reception desk cleverly sited in front of the door so noone can get in if there's someone waiting to be seated - genius) belies a floor space (2 levels) which must rival Amazon's european distribution hub. Rows of identical banquettes sit beneath faux-gold pig masques and "US-sports" TV (via internet, looking like someone's filming with a 1990's camera phone). Legions of staff "greet" you (i.e. one of them looks up from the private conversation they're enjoying and deigns to show us to our table). The menus are laminated A4 (class) and resemble my daughter's first attempts with MS Publisher - all randomly fonted and set-out in the style of a newsletter; presumably deliberately.

Service is brisk (it's empty when we arrive) and once we decipher the menu, we order (BBQ beans instead of the set-menu coleslaw is "additional extra cost" apparently; I'm feeling more special by the second).

As if by (electrical) magic, our dishes arrive in 3 minutes flat (2:30, level 7, 1250W I presume), although I didn't quite hear the "bing" or "bong" from the chefrowave. My guest muses as to where his "pulled pork" has been pulled from, given its marked back-taste (and odour) of egestion. My "famous burnt ends" are good enough when I hit the fatted parts, but at what I would estimate to be their third or fourth time of cooking, the leaner meat is like chewing wood. Or tobacco perhaps, like the cowboys - maybe that's the point? My ribs, similarly, are too baked to be of much use beyond weaponary. Now I LOVE ribs. I hated these.

Drinks are served with their recepticles brought to the table (a multi-pack can in the case of my Pepsi; I kid ye not). This itself is a sad indictment indicating an assumption that diners will think (given everything else) that Bodean's House of BBQd Cynicism might be filling glasses from a 3 litre family bottle...

The portions (c.15 sterling for my dish) are lamentably average too - for a chain which crows about its US origins, this is one aspect of the American model which is not followed.

We were there for all of 45 minutes and - frankly - couldn't wait to leave. I note, struggling to keep a straight face, that they sell "Take Home Packs" of ribs, etc, vacuum-packed so you can microwave them yourself at home. If you've got some pig masks and ripped-off Turkish Sky Sports, you're truly set.

In summary, if you want a commercially-driven, branding-over-substance trip to a mock US Ribs House, which serves average-sized, microwave-reheated fayre, in the dining ambience you'd get if you googled "buy faux US diner decor", then Bodean's is your place.

But then equally, if that's what you're looking for, you might plump for Wetherspoons next door, at half the price...

  • Visited January 2014
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
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