One of Bedford’s deluxe venues, d’Parys, has been upgraded with an elegant refurbishment and a revised menu. Our intrepid reviewer Stewart Carr went along to check out the changes.
CARR SAYS... A lofty Victorian house tucked away in the middle of the leafy De Parys Avenue - d’Parys is tastefully discreet with no outward flashing sign - if a little hard to spot driving along in the dark!
I’ll admit it’s my first time here, but even then, the sheen of its new interiors is instantly apparent.
Warm lights and soft furnishings compliment the exposed brickwork with a smattering of quirky touches. A few wheels adorn one wall and the entire ceiling of the dining area is covered end to end with wooden shutters of all shapes and colours.
Before I get drunk on surroundings, there’s a very real chance of inebriation. Besides an exhaustive wine list (I settle for a trusty New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc), D’Parys stocks a whole host of exotically-names spirits that I’d never heard of - and which, in all honesty, I could easily have spent a whole evening exploring!
D’Parys’s strongest selling point is without a doubt its food menu. A mixture of traditional staples and some interesting left field choices, it’s certainly no easy feat choosing just what to eat.
Ultimately, I can’t resist the crayfish on bruschetta, a perfect starter in my book, and boy does it deliver! A spicy drizzle of brown sauce melds nicely with the chilled meat of the crayfish, with a squeeze of lemon juice for good measure.
And for a main course? Well, my heart was opting for the venison and rabbit ragu tagliatelle (a very enticing dish) but this is, after all, a review.
So, I choose what I imagine is a more popular dish - slow-cooked pork belly with wittled kale, dauphinoise potatoes, apple and chilli ketchup. Irresistable! So tender is the pork, it falls apart at the slightest touch and almost melts in the mouth. Even the buttered kale is perfectly crisp and delicious, I came away feeling heartily satisfied.
Boasting an even blend of modernity and warm, rustic charm - the D’Parys Hotel’s refined settings and delicious food are everything you’d want in a contemporary restaurant.
See www.dparys.co.uk for more information.