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Bill’s may be a chain but a good shopping hideout

Review: Bill's Restaurant, Rushden Lakes, Northamptonshire.

We usually give priority on our eating out experiences in NQ to independent outlets who, like our humble selves, are battling against the bigger chaps with their deeper, corporate pockets.
But after a couple of visits to Bill’s at the new (ish) Rushden Lakes shopping complex, we felt it worth a mention.
After a soul sapping search with a pre-teen, I’ve-got-my-own-tastes-now-and-it’s-my-birthday-money kinda trip, a break was more than called for.
There are several big names now at Rushden Lakes for food and coffee, including Five Guys, Wagamama, Bewitched, Zizzi and Nando’s. And while these remain popular due to the inevitable consistency of a chain-store, we’ve found Bill’s to be quite un-chain-like. We were greeted like ladies who lunch; made to feel like we, as a two, nipping in for a late afternoon lunch, were as important as the larger tables of ‘occasion’ diners.
Kids are treated well by the menu, with three courses (£6.95) including vegetable crudities with hummus, a choice of burger, fish fingers, bangers and mash or macaroni and cheese, and a very decent puds including ice-cream (including vegan options), or dippy chocolate strawberries.

Sharing platter with hummus dips

Meanwhile, the grown-up menu features a sharing nibbles platter (£13.95)that makes a very ample main course for a parent sick of looking at horrible ‘80s-inspired clothes they remember wearing first time round: devilled chicken skewers, calamari, niçoise olives, toasted focaccia, smashed avocado, hummus, purple basil & pine nut pesto, red pepper tapenade and mixed seeds. A watermelon cooler and coffee brought the total up to just shy of thirty quid.

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