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The Bell, Odell - pub details

Bell

Address: High Street, Odell, Bedford, Bedfordshire, MK43 7AU [map] [gmap]

Tel: 0871 951 1000 (ref 25873) - calls cost 10p per minute plus network extras

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> Current user rating: 7.9/10 (rated by 15 users)
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other pubs nearby:

Magpie, Harrold (0.9 miles), Oakley Arms, Harrold (1.0 miles), Muntjac, Harrold (1.1 miles), Royal Oak, Carlton (1.2 miles), Fox Inn, Carlton (1.6 miles) - see more nearby pubs

user reviews of the Bell, Odell

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

5 most recent reviews of 14 shown - see all reviews

Lovely village pub which is much smaller inside than it looks from the outside. At the rear, there is a large garden, split into a number of areas. It is clearly popular with families. There is also an outdoor bar. Beyond the garden, a path leads down to the river. It's a Greene King pub and the ales were Greene King IPA & Abbot, Ruddles Best, Hardy & Hanson's Olde Trip & Hogsback TEA. The landlady and staff were friendly.
blue_scrumpy - 9 Jul 2018 19:21
This looks to be your quintessential country pub, set in an attractive village location, a friendly landlady, thatched roof and a riverside garden. What more could you ask? Well, firstly I think a but of artistic licence has been applied to the sign advertising the riverside garden. I walked down to the fence at the bottom of the garden which was some way back from the river bank. I could hear the river, see a bridge over it, but certainly not see the river itself. Probably not what most people have in mind when they visualise a pub's riverside garden.

Inside the cosy country look continues though. It's a traditional pub, mostly carpeted apart from a few cream tiles in the middle and with plenty of low ceilings, black beams, horse brasses and the other paraphernalia one would expect. It's also quite a large pub, being a L-shape and with several different areas, although not entirely separate rooms as such. To the right is a small snug which was very cosy with a massive stone fire-place that had a wood burning stove giving off plenty of warmth (I heard the landlady telling one of the locals that they'd now had the fires lit for seven months), plenty of copper pots and plates and a couple of miniature beer barrels in the window sill. Decor wise it is fairly similar throughout, with cream plasterwork on the upper part of the walls and wood panelling that has been painted maroon on the lower half.

The rest of the pub is largely given over to seating, although there doesn't seem to be any particular area set aside for dining which makes a pleasant change. A small section at the front of pub had bar stools around the perimeter and a ledge running around like a breakfast bar. Numerous papers were supplied, so this is clearly somewhere to just sit and read whilst supping your pint. There was a darts board in the rear bar and a sign advertised a regular quiz night. Elsewhere were a couple more stone fireplaces, although not on the scale of the one in the snug, and one of these too had a fire blazing away. The quiet background music was an eclectic collection and consisted of both Celine Dion and Black Sabbath among others.

The food menu was a typical "pub grub" affair and listed various options such as Ham Egg & Chips, Chilli Con Carne, Burger, Fish & Chips, Sausage & Mash, etc. Most of the mains were priced at around the £8 - £9 mark. My Chicken Kiev was a little disappointing - it was a generous portion and a decent enough piece of chicken, but there was virtually no garlic butter. In reality it was little more than chicken in breadcrumbs.

Beers on tap were slightly uninspiring, all being from the Greene King stable. These were London Glory, IPA and Abbott Ale. The solitary cider though was Stowford Press which makes a pleasant change from the crud you get in most of their pubs.

All in all I really wanted to like this pub, and in many ways I did. But the disappointing beer choice and food, plus the fact that both the soap dispenser and hand dryer were broken in the gents means that I cannot score it as highly as I would like.
Blackthorn - 10 Apr 2013 07:47
Good traditional English pubs are becoming a rarity these days but this pub is up to the challenge.
You always receive a warm welcome when entering and on cold days, an extra warm welcome comes from the roaring log fires in the pub.
The cask ales (Greene King Abbot, IPA etc) are handled with loving care and kept to the correct serving temperature and the Landlord has immense pride in the quality of the Guinness he serves which has won him awards for his endeavours.
In some pubs food can be an after thought, but not here as they now have their own Quality Chef employed to make the visit even more worthwhile. An extensive and varied menu is provided with a daily specials board, serving food more at restaurant standards rather than at just pub grub value.
The picturesque setting of the Bell, a short walk away from the Harrold and Odell Country Park, makes this a gem of a pub set amid the quaint village of Odell. It has a garden leading down to the river Ouse, car parking at front and rear and even a welcome for good behaved dogs.
Of all the Public Houses my wife and I have frequented in the area, the Bell always peals and calls us back. Do visit yourself.

zayerman - 27 Nov 2011 18:36
Nice pub, nice beer, shockingly bad food. Soggy chips, flavourless fish, sliced bread that had gone hard through being left out, and the salad was warm where they had obviously reheated the whole meal in the microwave. Go and sit in their nice garden by all means, but food? Forget it.
blah1234 - 14 Aug 2011 23:11
Must vist historic pub on a lane from Harrold to Sharnbrook. Large Diiner and lunch menu, and the full range of Greene King Beers. The Abbot was in loveley nick! I had nice conversations too. Darts and other pub games. Historic pub that was originally a Seventeenth century row of cottages. Also has art-deco ('20's and '30's) features. Has long been a pub. AA recommended.
nigelwootton421 - 5 Oct 2010 20:36

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