A little place with lots of style, stepping inside Bistro Story is like taking a tiny trip abroad. From the food to the music, there’s a familiar Eastern European ambience that will make anyone with European roots feel right at home. I remember glancing inside and pausing in curiosity as I powered down Queen St not so long ago, and we’d heard good reports from work mates. But it wasn’t till last night that we actually went into Maidenhead after 6pm and tried the food at what is now my favourite restaurant in the land.
I love the posters on the walls and everything from the geometric copper lighting, to the plants and the decor. This Polish bistro has a strong identity for such a fledgling business, complete with contemporary illustrated menus and branded dinner boards. But really, it’s the food that takes centre stage. Fresh, well-executed, beautifully presented and lovingly traditional. It’s a selective menu, with a few specials on offer and a list of mostly pork and meat dishes, served with simple potatoes and coleslaw. While this might sound like a criticism it is far from that. I wish more restaurants would follow suit and serve a smaller selection of food but serve it well, with each dish being of the highest standard as it is with Bistro Story.
I’ll admit that I was secretly disappointed that my breaded pork didn’t come with chips, but when I bit into the boiled potatoes I was surprised at how tasty, tender and moist they were. I’m sure there was butter involved but I couldn’t see it anywhere, as they weren’t oily at all. The breaded pork came in a piece the size of your head, and there were huge portions all round which meant that we couldn’t finish our meals, but were able to take the leftovers home in a doggy-bag.
While everything we ordered was excellent, the highlight was the pierogi. We tried both the Russian style and meat-filled pierogi and both were incredible. The traditional steamed dumplings were served with a pot of sour cream and were moist and tender and terrifically moreish. You can get Polish lager on tap and there’s a good selection of drinks and they’ve got kids portions as well.
Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, Bistro Story has another secret weapon that makes a return trip to this restaurant hard to resist – almost everything on the menu is under £7. For three of us, including drinks we paid just over £10 each. With prices as good as your local pub, Bistro Story is offering an ambient, authentic dining experience that is unbeatable. I can’t wait to go again.
Bistro Story, 17 Queen Street, SL6 1NB Maidenhead, United Kingdom. Call 01628 622087 to book.