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Best Restaurant in Chester? The Forge Chester Reviews of Decor, Food, and Service

One of my top things to do in Chester is eat at the Forge Restaurant Chester, which is possibly the best place to eat in Chester. This is the second Mike Robinson restaurant I’ve eaten at, so I felt confident about what to expect. Let me tell you, the fine dining Chester experience blew my expectations out of the water. In this post, I’m sharing the Forge Chester reviews of the restaurant’s menu, decor, and overall atmosphere.

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Best Restaurant in Chester? The Forge Restaurant Overview

This was my second Mike Robinson restaurant experience, so I had a good idea about what to expect—locally sourced (very British) ingredients, field-to-table sustainability, fresh game, open-fire cooking, and comfort. You can learn more about Mike Robinson and his ethos here.

I felt extremely anxious when I learned we were booked for dinner at 7:00 p.m. Having a 5-month-old teething baby and dinner at a fancy restaurant was NOT something I wanted to endure or make nearby customers endure. But it was what it was, so we turned up for dinner on time with a slightly grumpy baby.

I’d love to tell you that Charlie was a total angel throughout the dinner, and the whole fine dining Chester experience was a dream, but it wasn’t. He was tired, teething, and wanted to grab and eat anything he could grab. Although the staff kindly had a highchair waiting for us, he was still too little to use it, so I had to hold him on my knee the entire time. 

Why am I telling you this?

Because the way the staff treated us during this challenging time blew me away—they were so kind! They brought my husband a fresh start when he went to get the Calpol for Charlie as he had tooth pain, and his first one went cold. They constantly came over to check in on us and gave on us and paid Charlie attention. Seeing how stressed out I was trying to hold my baby and eat my dinner, one of the staff members even took Charlie off me and walked around the restaurant so I could eat. A follower told me on Instagram that this staff member did the same for her!

My point is, the staff were terrific. Yes, is upscale but also relaxed and easy-going. It’s the best place to eat in Chester for fine dining without the BS British stuffiness. Also, my fellow diners were kind, and the experience was enjoyable. It felt more like dining in someone’s living room at times—that’s how relaxed and intimate the atmosphere was. We all fell in love!

Would I book an evening meal at 7:00 p.m. again with a baby? No, probably not, haha. But when you’re traveling and don’t have a sitter, you sometimes don’t have a choice. It’s good to know that the Forge Restaurant Chester is exceptionally family-friendly, making it the best restaurant Chester offers for young children.

The food is fantastic, the staff is incredible, and the atmosphere is comfortable and relaxed. Prices are what you would expect to pay for the quality of the food and service, and it’s worth every penny.

is just off the main high street, within Hotel Indigo Chester (read my hotel review here if you’re looking for somewhere to stay in Chester). The restaurant has its own entrance and outdoor seating area on the pavement. Upon entering, the first thing you’ll notice is the kitchen. It’s hard to miss, considering it’s right in front of you, taking up most of the back wall as the restaurant’s focal point.

At the Forge, like The Woodsman, the preparation is just as important as the food. Being in such close proximity to where the food is being prepared makes you feel the magic and adds depth to the experience.

Mike Robinson wants you to feel involved and emotionally connected to what you’re eating. It’s no accident that no matter where you sit in this restaurant, you feel included in the food preparation process. I love this!

The seating areas are stylish but super comfortable. I loved the big round booths with cushions, making baby nursing much more manageable. Highchairs were available and set up for us before we were seated.

Wondering where to stay? Check out these options!
The Chester Grosvenor
Leonardo Hotel Chester
The Queen at Chester Hotel

💡Quick Tip
View my full UK packing guide here including a downloadable checklist. And check out my UK Essentials shopping list here.

The Forge Fine Dining Chester Menu

The first thing we experienced at the Forge was the drinks trolly, wow! I can see why it’s so popular, even though I was tempted to have a gin—I haven’t drunk in years (even before I was pregnant), and I wouldn’t say I like gin. My husband succumbed to the pressure and ordered a cocktail, which he described as otherworldly. 

The trolly was brought over by a knowledgeable and enthusiastic staff member who explained everything on the trolly twice (once for the camera as we were filming a vlog). She told us that the cordials were made in-house by one of the chefs, and she provided other information about the mixology. Once you’ve chosen your poison, she mixed it up right before you—it was a polished, memorable performance.

Then we got the menu. I instantly knew what I wanted: wild venison Scotch egg for a snack, whipped chicken liver parfait to start, and then sharing the aged steak for the main. 

The Scotch egg was a must because, let’s face it, Scotch eggs are pretty gross. You may not know what it is if you’re reading this and aren’t British. A Scotch egg is a hard-boiled egg wrapped in sausage meal and breadcrumbs. They sell them in supermarkets and aren’t the best quality food, so I wanted to see how it would be ordered here. 

I will never be able to eat another Scotch egg again without being disappointed and thinking about this one. It was perfectly cooked—the yolk was soft and had the perfect texture and color, and the meat was good quality and tasty. It was an explosion of tastes that reminded me of childhood and family picnics. 

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The pate was also delicious and had a perfectly balanced taste and texture, but the aged steak stole the show.

We asked, as we always do, about “the thing” to order here and were told it was the steak. It’s aged in-house—they bring it in at 30 days old, and then it’s treated and kept for two to three months before being served. What makes the experience even more exciting is that you get to choose the steak yourself. 

A staff member escorts you to the fridge, where you can choose your steak by size and cut. You tell them how you want it cooked and if you want any extra sides, and then the magic begins.

We ordered the steak with dirty mash and vegetables. This combination was great, but you must add the gravy to make the whole dish work. It was my first time eating an aged steak, and they’ve set the bar very high.

It was not a cheap meal, but it was such a unique experience that it was worth coming with the expectation of spending a couple hundred pounds on an unforgettable evening.  

The Forge Restaurant Staff

I know I’ve gushed a lot about the staff already, but I will gush more! The staff was fantastic, from the mixologist with the drinks trolly to the chef who brought over our meals and talked about the steak’s aging process to the lovely woman who took Charlie so I could eat my meal. Everyone loved working there, felt passionate about the customer experience, and made us feel completely relaxed and at home. The staff makes this place just as much as the food.

Europe Travel Guide Planning

🧳 Any recommendations on what I should pack for Europe?

Yes! I have created a whole packing guide to Europe which you can read here and you can also check out my packing list for Europe on Amazon here.

👩‍⚕️ What is the best insurance to have while traveling?

I recommend using Heymondo for a great value policy. The app also offers you 24/7 Dr Chat. For Digital Nomads check out SafetyWing digital nomad insurance. I have also written a blog post covering all my recommended travel insurance here

✈️ Any flight recommendations?

WayAWay offers you cheap flights with cashback. You can use this code CLAIRE22 to get 10% off. Otherwise, Skyscanner or Expedia are my go-to flight searching platforms.

🎫 Where can I buy tickets for museums, attractions, and tours in Europe?

I recommend either Viator or GetYour Guide. They have a lot of options available!

🚗 Where can I book rental cars or private transportation?

I strongly recommend using RentalCars. They are available in more than 60.000 locations and customer service support in more than 40 languages.

📱What do you use for internet connection while traveling?

I’m a big fan of personal WiFi devices and they have saved my ass so many times when traveling. I wrote a full review of the top travel WiFi devices you can read here. I personally use GlocalMe as I can either pop in a physical sim card or use their local carrier.

With regards to my phone connection, I use e-sims while traveling, so rather than having to swap out my regular sim card I can download the app and buy a virtual sim card. I recommend using either Airhub or Alosim. Both have great coverage of multiple countries and are very easy to use.

🛏️ What is the best platform to use for booking accommodation?

The 3 best platforms that I normally use are,, and Expedia. They offer great deals and multiple options. I always check all three to be sure of the best deals.

🛅 Do you have any luggage recommendations for traveling?

I do have a complete list of the best packing and luggage products that I recommend, you can check the list here. I’m currently traveling with this suitcase and this backpack.

Best Restaurant Chester: The Forge Restaurant Final Thoughts

Whether you’re a guest of Hotel Indigo Chester or looking for an excellent meal in Chester, you won’t be disappointed with the Forge. We went as a family but were dining alongside solo diners, couples, and small groups of friends and families celebrating birthdays—it’s a restaurant for any occasion!