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catch 22 Chesterfield

Catch 22


Replaced by Drinks & Dough

I have not had the privilege of eating there yet but when I do of course I will let you know how it was.

It was a typical English June night the air around was  warmish but of course it was pouring down with rain, all dressed up and a soggy run from the taxi to the restaurant door, We had made it, ready for a good night out as it’s not that often we can book a baby sitter for 3 kids and an over excitable boxer dog. Yes mothers do come in handy especially when they do a spot of ironing, the homework the reading with the kids.

Catch 22 is a newly opened ” fish “restaurant  in Chesterfield

catch 22 night out crooked spire

So through the door we went, a newly opened restaurant in Chesterfield Catch 22. There they were all near the bar waiting expectantly for the customers to arrive. We were greeted with beaming smiles and a very helpful attitude. The ladies had a glass of Chardonnay each, one large and one medium , the boys (grumpy old men) fancied a glass of red so I asked what they had to offer  he told us 2 types and then was stuck for the rest so he reached for the wine menu for me to peruse over. I guessed the bloke behind the bar just couldn’t be arsed to learn about what he was supposed to be serving, a little harsh I know but !

We opted for a bottle of Malbec as it seemed that it didn’t come by the glass and the wines that did I didn’t fancy at all,  after all its only once a month if we are lucky

Catch 22 was decorated pleasantly not to over fishified ( I know its not a proper word) but they hadn’t overdone the fish/nautical theme. They even had some nice fish wallpaper.

So we were escorted to the table and just before the ladies sat down they noticed water dripping down onto the table and upon looking up you could see the water squeezing through the plastic looking roof , yes I did say plastic, it looked like a lean to at the back of the restaurant  , ok it was pouring down with rain outside and perhaps on a normal day they wouldn’t need buckets on the floor to catch the water at Catch22. On a positive note it was the poshest decorated lean to that I have ever seen.

Oh did I mention we had to take our own drinks and the half bottle of wine to the table ourselves or am I just expecting too much of Chesterfield

The menus are mini newspapers, you know like they used to wrap up your fish in chips in before health and safety and the European parliament. There were also a specials board and little specials card. The menu was quite varied and a good selection to be fair. A little perplexed that in a “fish” restaurant there was a section  with exotic  meats .With so much choice it just made it difficult for me to choose because I do love my food and I am always the last to order always wondering if I have made the right choice,

Catch 22 The Starters

The waiters were attentive at first and asked us on 2 occasions if we were ready to order and on the second occasion we did order, to start with the ladies went with slat and peppered squid and carpaccio, the grumpy old men opted for the Moules  Mariniere

catch 22 monkfish


Moules Mariniere £6.90

Fresh mussels steamed in white wine and served in a creamy garlic sauce


Beef Carpaccio £7.50

Thin slices of peppered fillet steak, served with rocket and parmesan salad


Salt and Pepper Squid £6.50

Deep fried squid rings, served with garlic mayonnaise


Now all the above starters can be cooked in less than 10 minutes but we were left waiting watching the rain drip through the lean to onto the other table we turned down for about 40 minutes. 40 minutes and my Moules  Mariniere was well disappointing to look at, the muscles were very small shriveled dark things in the shells The sauce was tepid and not seasoned at all so I had to reach for the salt and pepper  to give it some flavour.  I did try wifeys salt and pepper squid which was delicious so I had chosen the wrong dish again. The waiter did do the standard procedure and asked if everything was good whilst we were eating but I remained silent as I didn’t want to spoil the night and I didn’t want to wait another 40 minutes for a bowl of under seasoned little muscles.

A few more people came into the restaurant and went toward the back of the establishment past the lean to part to a more solid structure. It wasn’t full or busy in Catch 22 and it wasn’t  empty  just enough people to create a little ambiance so I wasn’t impressed that we had to wait nearly 30 minutes for our plates to be removed from the table.

Catch 22 The Mains

IMG_2755The mains, the girls went for a special monkfish wrapped in parma ham and served on a bed of tagliatelle, it looked ok but the plate was not that warm and wifey informed me that the tagliatelle was luke warm and the monkfish overcooked. I had the surf and turf, a very nice succulent fillet steak cooked perfectly blue, well-seasoned juicy and delicious served with a scrawny half lobster with the taste of seafood sticks. The surf and turf came with a little bucket of handmade chips and they did look scrummy, however looks can be deceiving and it was, obviously the oil was not hot enough as the fat had seeped into the potato making them very greasy indeed. My good friend Lee went for the wild menu item of Elk, well it must have been a midget elk as the portion size was very small. We had to ask them to remove the finger bowl from the starters so we had enough room to get the mains on the table.

Catch 22 The Dessert

well we decided there would be no harm in looking so back came the pretend newspapers, very limited choice and not enticing before but there was an offer on for a free dessert and as I had the surf and turf I qualified. So we had the jam roly poly which came after a 20 minute wait, not sure if it was because they were deciding if I qualified for the freebie or because they had to wait for the microwave to become free. The sponge and jam were boiling hot and the custard on the plate was cold and claggy. Everyone except myself thought the actually Jam roly poly was absolutely fabulous

Catch 22 The Verdict

Well it was a bit of a roller coaster really some excellent food and then some pretty poor food, service both good and bad, perhaps the weather didn’t help, not sure and I did mention this to the manager whom never left the side of the bar/till all night long. He did comment that he would pass my comments on to the chef and that was that as he handed my receipt. Off we went into the wet night in search of our next experience. Certainly not a disaster but I doubt that we will be going back again . That’s just my personal opinion your probably best of trying it for yourself after all I am a closet food snob. The Catch 22 website, the prices differ from online to whats actually in the restaurant

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coal Bar and Grill Sheffield

Coal Bar & Grill Sheffield

Well we stumbled across this by accident really, we were due to go out (very rare occasion) with the eldest daughter and boyfriend to physic show in a near by bar but they had no tickets left “Sold Out” nope we didnt see that coming. Anyway we had the babysitter booked (Gran) and its not very often we do get out so we decided to take full advantage and as soon as Gran arrived we left the building. We trundled down the motorway to Meadowhall so we could  do a little window shopping. (I call it window licking as we spend all our money on the kids) After a stroll around the shops we walked around the food part of Meadowhall and out of the many only 3 of them appealed to us.


The Coal was 1 of the 3 that appealed to us and as we have never tried it thought we would give it a go. It was quite obvious from the branding and layout that it was a chain, not always a bad thing but then if its anything like Jamies Italian then its bad as I have been in 3 around the country and they all have been poor, I digress. So we were shown to a table quite near to the semi open kitchen. So far so good.

coal and grill bar



It didn’t take to long to ask if we wanted a drink so as it was the first time in what seemed like an age we order a drink to savour. I ordered a large glass of Rioja with was 5p short of £7 so quite expensive I though, especially when I can get a reasonable bottle for around £5. After a good clout around the head from the wife I got over it and enjoyed the wine gliding down as we perused over the menu.


After a little deliberation we decided to go with the small plate option as I do like to taste as many different things as I can when out. Small plates were either £4.25 for one or £11.95 for 3 so we settled on, Fried Calamari, Warm Chorizo and Red Pepper Houmous hoping that would be more than enough for the two of us. The trio of dishes were served on a triple cake like stand and did look pretty good. It did give it a sense of theater but the top dish was a little to high to see exactly what it was.

  • Fried Calamari
    • With chipotle mayo
    • Very nice indeed, big crispy batter around the calamari and more importantly the calamari was not overcooked and chewy. The mayo had a little edge to it and with a squeeze of lemon (and a pinch of salt) the dish was memorable for all the right reasons
  • Warm Chorizo
    • in garlic oil
    • Well I thought the warm referred to the chorizo as in warm just out of the frying pan, nope NO it did not it must have referred to Warm and Bloody Spicy. The after kick was so much that the wife had 1 piece and then no more. I did battle on and have a few more but it was just a little to hot to enjoy so I wont be having those at Coal again.
  • Red Pepper Houmous
    • with warm flat bread
    • This was the top dish on our trio tower, eventually I took it of there so I could see it (doh yes that simple lift it off the stand) Anyway it was very nice scooped up with little pieces of warm pitta bread. The red pepper taste wasn’t overpowering but just enough to give a well rounded balanced flavour to the dish. A big tick in the box.

The plates were duly cleared away without to much waiting, however after that I wanted another drink but it seemed that everyone was rushing past so fast to pick orders up from the grill and then to the tables that I didnt get a chance to order a drink until the main course was brought to our table.




Choices choices choices, again the menu at the Coal grill looked good for the mains and one of the reasons we parked our bottoms in there. In the end after a little deliberation we decided on Coal’s Famous Firesticks. Yes we went for the diversity of 3 Firesticks for £20.95. Chicken, Beef and Tiger prawns


They served us with our mains, an impressive looking stand with 3 large industrial looking skewers and a flaming hot skillet with chargrilled sweet peppers (only green and not cooked) courgette (only 4 thinly sliced pieces) Mushrooms (can not remember seeing them) Tangy tomato sauce (tasted like plain squeezed tomato puree) and a pile of fire roasted onions, and fired was the word (lots of burnt bits). The Skillet was served on its own tower again a sense of

Chicken Breast and Chorizo
theater but for me it was to high, above the eye line and this was definitely  to hot to put at table level. The skewers were removed one by one from their impressive stand and the waitress wrestled with the meat (and more burnt I mean charred green peppers and onions) and just managed to place it on the warm towering skillet. There was a few times in the wrestling match that I thought the meat would come flying off and hit me in the face but we just manged to avoid 3rd degree burns. Well we did, the waitress burnt her hand on the handle of the giant skewers. I know surprising they were hot after being on a charcoal grill which are food was rapidly cooling as she popped back to get a towel to save the skin on her hands. (perhaps the chefs just heat them a little for their entertainment) Oh nearly forgot a big bowl of chips, I had about 3 of them because there was plenty else to eat.

    • with chipotle mayo
    • All very good and tasty, the meat was succulent and the chorizo wasn’t to bad with the chicken, unfortunate there was only 4 pieces among the ever increasing green pepper pile
  • Prime Chargrilled Beef Rump
    •  with a blue cheese sauce
    • The beef was pretty good 4 pieces but unfortunately the blue cheese sauce was very watery and lacking in taste.
  • Succulent Seared Tiger Prawns
    • with sweet chilli sauce
    • The prawn were juicy tasty and even better when dipped into the chilli sauce, fabtastic.

All in all it was a pleasant and enjoyable experience, the food over all was good, the atmosphere and ambiance agreeable. The staff were all pleasant and presentable and we would probably go back there to eat “BUT” I could not help thinking for the money I could do a better job at home. Loved the concept along with the whole idea but with a few tweaks could be fantastic and I will do it for friends one night with a post dedicated to it on here.

Definitely give Coal Bar & Grill Sheffield a visit,

The Mossbrook eckington 

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F and B Frankie and Bennys

Frankie & Bennys Chesterfield Review

It was a funny old day (03/05/15) Bank Holiday Monday, As it was a 3 day break from work it kinda felt you should be doing something but it was terrible rain in the morning and just miserable. Eventually we dared to leave the house in the afternoon out and we happened across Frankie & Benny’s Chesterfield. Cheer ourselves up with some good food, well that was the intention.

Frankie & Bennys Chesterfield in the door and not very busy great, show straight to the table, all the family has sat down except myself and there wanting to take our drinks orders and any pre-starters. Talk about up-selling my bum hadn’t even touched the seat never mind look at the menu. So we sat down arranged the kids with their play packs and then the waiter was back already. We ordered the garlic cheese bread and our drinks. He then asked if we were ready to order and we explained we hadn’t still looked at the menu so could we have a few more minutes. So he left and never to return again. Eventually after a long 15 minute wait someone came across to take our order.


The Garlic and melting mozzarella turned up a large cheesy garlic pizza, the kids loved it we loved it, it was so nice there wasn’t enough. So far so good now just waiting for the starters to come




I went for the spicy wings with a blue cheese dip. The wings themselves were cooked very well but for me the spicy sauce was just to much for me and spoiled the starter a little bit as my lips were burning all the way through and for about 10 to 15 minutes after. So I wont be having that again. The Mrs had the skins with cheese and bacon, well what can i say its a baked potato with cheese and bacon on it, not particular tasty, just warm and stodgy.


In the distance on the kitchen pass under the warming lights I could see our order all nicely lined up so we cleared the table of the kids play packs and waited, and we waited and waited watching all the waiters just keep passing the plates of food on the pass, after 10 minutes I think the guilt got the better of them and the waiters stopped their chatting and started to send out the orders. Luckily it was not busy or we could have been in for a real long wait.

The Mrs had Grilled Chicken Pitta and take a look below at the picture, I think this is what is supposed to come to the table, unfortunately when it made it our table it wasn’t exactly the same. The wife was kind enough to share some of her main meal. The chicken was very dry and tasteless apart from the sauce that was poured on, it tasted like it was cooked earlier in the day then placed in warm water to remove all the taste of chicken possible along with making it dry and stringy. A few mouthfuls was more than enough for anyone, we did not inflict this on the children and so far no one has been seriously hurt during our visit to Frankie & Benny’s Chesterfield.


Grilled Chicken Pitta

I was going to have the steak and chips but I thought as we were having a treat I would have the 80z sirloin steak. I like my steaks blue and perhaps in hindsight its not the best cut of steak to have blue but hey what could go wrong. There was a slight sear on the steak but apart from that it was very pale. As i cut into it, it was very raw in the middle which is how I like it, it was a shame that the middle of the steak was cold and completely uncooked. I suspect that the grill was not hot enough to sear the outside of the meat and carry a warmth all the way through the meat, I ate most of the meat after I trimmed of all the fat. Disappointingly under seasoned and not worth £10 and defiantly not worth the £16.95 I paid. Not even with the pile of chips, the mushroom (unseasoned) watercress and the poor grilled offering of a tomato.


The kids had the kids menu I know perfect and at £4.25 looks great value,Blue twin had chicken bites, very crispy, that crispy in fact that any 5 year old with above average knife skills would still struggle to cut them in half. I think the professional term for the crispness is “overcooked”

We love kids! We have two delicious menus for kids up to the age of 11, starting from just £4.25 for a main course, a dessert and refillable soft drinks. All of our childrens’ meals come with an optional side of vegetables, side salad or Heinz baked beans – free of charge! Just ask your server. Plus every child gets a fun activity pack with games and puzzles! Free apples available for children!

Pink twin had sausage and mash. There must have been about 3lbs of microwaved mash potato (seriously for a 5 year old) which tasted, well warm stodge. The sausages with a another 30 seconds of cooking would have made perfect drawing implements, charcoal, yes seconds away from being inedible. pink twin did eat them as she was starving and sausage is her favorite food. Oh nearly forgot she also decided to have the vegetable option as well. A few peas and two big pieces of limp broccoli. Broccoli is our eldest favourite veg but it was to limp and cold even for her to eat. The eldest had the cheeseburger and a few pounds of chips as well. The cheeseburger seemed  ok apart from it looked like it had been throw onto the plate by a quarter back from 50 yards across the kitchen.

The Menu page

Frankie and Bennys

F & B Chicken


The service was pretty poor considering that it was empty, when we asked for the kids drinks to be topped up it took over 10 mins, I was going to ask for another drink but they were never at the table long enough to actually ask, they did come to the table to ask if everything was alright and the kids said yes but before we had a chance to voice our opinion the waitress left. Eventually the wife called over the waitress to complain about the diabolical chicken, the rest of us had finished what we had manged to force down by the time she came over, she did say why didn’t you say earlier when I asked and as the wife said you didn’t actually stop long enough for me to tell you it was poor. So of she trotted to tell the manager and on her return she said that that meal would be deducted from our final bill. So after we complained we had 3 visits to the table by staff and not ONE of them actually cleared the plates away. After 15 minutes of waiting with dirty plates on our table we could take no more, we were not even prepared to stay (much to the disappointment of the kids) for the kids ice-cream that was included in their meal.  So off I went to one of the tills (the main chatting point for the staff) and asked to pay for our food. (I think it was the manager) When I was presented with the bill the chicken dish was still on there so I said ” I thought they were taking the chicken dish off” she replied “ok” printed out another receipt without asking why or even if we had enjoyed our meal. Did they care for the customer experience. I  felt like we were more of a hindrance to their little chat club at the till and the fact they are employed to serve the customers probably never enters their heads


We will not be visiting again, after a £5 voucher off and then £10 off for the very poor chicken dish we paid over £50, not a fortune but then again a few quid and I expect a little more in service and certainly  in taste  especially when I can cook much better at home for less then a quarter of the cost. Mass made food, probably cooked by boil in the bag cooks. Promises so much but delivers so little.

Places To Eat In Chesterfield Tickled Trout . Bottle Thyme are  great host and have great food.  If you are far afield and like Fish and Chips try Rick Steins in Padstow 

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