These are the West Country’s 2017-2018 Michelin Star Restaurants..
Written by Gabriella
The West Country is brimming with fantastic fine dining establishments – from luxury manor house hotels to cosy country inns. We’ve got more rising culinary talent across the South West than you can shake a stick at and from Cornwall to Wiltshire the region boasts over 17 Michelin Star Restaurants.
Winning a coveted Michelin Star is no mean feat. The accolade is one of the highest honours that a chef can earn for a restaurant and it speaks volumes about a businesses commitment to quality. So, without further ado, here’s the lowdown on the West Country’s Michelin Star winners…
Paul Ainsworth at Number 6
Head Chef: John Walton
How much is dinner? A 3 course set lunch at Paul Ainsworth at Number 6 can be booked for £29. For dinner reservations, an à la carte main starts from £31.
What makes it special? This Cornish restaurant is located in a charming Georgian townhouse in the heart of beautiful Padstow. They serve modern British cuisine with a focus on locally sourced Cornish produce – which you just know is going to some of the freshest seafood around.
Book Your Table: www.paul-ainsworth.co.uk/number6
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Head Chef: Chris Eden
How much is dinner? A 3 course meal at Driftwood is priced at £70pp and a sample menu can be found here.
What makes it special? Driftwood pride themselves on remaining unpretentious about way they put together their menus. They make no lavish claims about their food and their mission is to wow their diners with the very best flavours and textures.
Book Your Table: www.driftwoodhotel.co.uk/our-restaurant
Outlaw’s Fish Kitchen
Where: Port Isaac
Head Chef: Tim Barnes
How much is dinner? Possibly the most affordable restaurant on this list, Outlaw’s Fish Kitchen offers a sharing menu from just £48.50pp.
What makes it special? You’ll find this restaurant homed within a quaint15th century fisherman’s cottage, overlooking the picturesque harbour of Port Isaac. The kitchen prepares small, original plates cooked to order and is a real celebration of seafood.
Book Your Table: nathan-outlaw.com/outlaws-fish-kitchen/
Restaurant Nathan Outlaw
Where: Port Isaac
Head Chef: Nathan Outlaw
How much is dinner? The seafood tasting menu will cost you £130pp with a matching wine flight priced at £75pp.
What makes it special? Situated at the top of Port Isaac overlooking the rugged Cornish coastline, this restaurant exclusively serves a seafood tasting menu that aims to highlight the finest sustainable seafood caught off the Cornish coast.
Book your table: nathan-outlaw.com/restaurant-nathan-outlaw/
Gidleigh Park Hotel
Head Chef: Chris Simpson
How much is dinner? The 7 course tasting menu is priced at £145pp. Alternatively, you can enjoy three courses with a glass of Champagne for only £49 on a lunchtime (which is an absolute bargain, trust me).
What makes it special? This elegant country hotel setting is perfect for an intimate dining experience. As you enjoy your meal you can look out across the hotel’s magnificent gardens and feel safe in the culinary hands of Chris Simpson. Gidleigh Park’s wine cellar is also internationally renowned and boasts over 13,000 bottles from around the world.
Book Your Table: gidleigh.co.uk
Head Chef: Michael Caines
How much is dinner? The Estuary Tasting Menu will set you back £135pp, while a two course lunch is priced at £45pp.
What makes it special? Michael Caines is one of the UK’s most acclaimed chefs and a strong advocate for South West produce. His new country house hotel is about as luxurious as it gets and the kitchen team are passionate about bringing the bounty of the nearby Exe estuary to your plate. Head here for modern British cuisine at its finest.
Book Your Table: lympstonemanor.co.uk
Head Chef: Simon Hulstone
How much is dinner? The tasting menu at The Elephant is priced at £72.50 per person with matching wines coming in at £32pp. They also offer a set lunch menu from Tuesday to Saturday starting from just £18.50
What makes it special? Hulstone’s freshly prepared dishes showcase the best of what the South West & Southdown Farm has to offer. He’s mastered the art of great seafood and is hugely knowledgable and passionate about local produce. Service here is excellent and you can expect friendly and knowledgable staff without all the usual fine dining frills.
Book Your Table: www.elephantrestaurant.co.uk
The Masons Arms
Head Chef: Chef Mark Dobson
How much is dinner? At Lunch they offer a three course menu for £25 or a two course for £21. Alternatively, Mark’s current à la carte dinner menu starts from £25.50/main.
What makes it special? This picturesque, thatched 13th Century Inn is all rather unassuming until you try Mark Dobson’s food. The Masons Arms only serve the finest ingredients presented in style and it is incredibly affordable when you consider the quality. I also adore the hand painted ceiling mural, which adds a touch of theatre to one’s dinner.
Book Your Table: www.masonsarmsdevon.co.uk
Thomas Carr at The Olive Room
Head Chef: Thomas Carr
How much is dinner at The Olive Room? The 6 course taster menu is priced at £75pp while an 8 course menu can be enjoyed for for £95pp. They also offer a special taster menu for vegetarians too.
What makes it special? The Olive Room believes that fine dining is best enjoyed in a relaxed and unpretentious environment. That’s why this is probably the only restaurant on this list that offers a side portion of chips alongside it’s a la carte offerings! Ultra-fresh seafood is the real focus here, with ‘dishes only confirmed once the day boat deliveries come in’.
Book Your Table: www.thomascarrdining.co.uk
The Pony and Trap
Head Chef: Josh Eggleton
How much is dinner? The 10 course tasting menu is priced at £70pp and a smaller 5 course tasting menu can be booked on a lunchtime for just £45pp.
What makes it special? This is no ordinary pub. The Pony & Trap are champions of the popular “field to fork” ethos and serve dishes sourced as locally as possible from suppliers around the Chew Valley and the South West. As testament to their outstanding quality, they’ve held their Michelin Star since 2011 and were ranked 2nd in the Estrella Damm Top 50 UK Gastropubs 2018.
Book Your Table: theponyandtrap.co.uk
Head Chef: Peter Sanchez-Iglesias
How much is dinner? Tapas dishes vary in prices, from £3 Marinated Olives to £22 Carabinero Prawns.
What makes it special? This modern tapas bar is bringing a taste of Andalusia to Bristol. The ever changing menu combines traditional tapas with personal interpretations from Chef Peter and the exciting menu won’t break the bank anytime soon.
Book Your Table: pacotapas.co.uk
Head Chef: Peter Sanchez-Iglesias
How much is dinner? The restaurant only offers one tasting menu ,which changes accordingly with day to day seasonal offerings. This is priced at £98-£118.
What makes it special? With an intimate restaurant setting of just nine tables, chef Peter Sanchez-Iglesias and his team create dishes which are influenced by the individuality, multicultural and creative vibes of their home city of Bristol.
Book Your Table: casamiarestaurant.co.uk
Head Chef: James Wilkins
How much is dinner? The 5 course Tasting Menu is priced at £58pp.
What makes it special? Wilks champion all that is local – from suppliers to growers and even regional artists. It’s one of the most affordable eateries on our list and they’ve really got their eye on the ball when it comes to catering for healthier lifestyles. Butter & cream are used sparingly, ensuring that dishes are light & full of natural flavour.
Book Your Table: www.wilksrestaurant.co.uk
The Dining Room at Whatley Manor
Head Chef: Niall Keating
How much is dinner? The gastronomic tasting menu comes in at £120, with an additional cheese-course priced at £12.95. For £200 you can also enjoy matching wines.
What makes it special? Whatley Manor’s Executive Head Chef Niall Keating draws on inspiration from a variety of different cultures, including Korean, Japanese and French cuisine. He crafts menus that balance contemporary and classic styles and his presentation is just divine. As well as earning a coveted Michelin Star after just one year at Whatley Manor, CKeating also nabbed ‘Michelin’s Young European Chef of the Year 2018’ – talk about impressive!
Book Your Table: www.whatleymanor.com/niall-keating
The Park (Lucknam Park Hotel)
Head Chef: Hywel Jones
How much is dinner? Enjoy a 3 course a la carte menu for £85pp or indulge in the Signature Tasting menu for £110pp (+ £95 wine pairing).
What makes it special? Hywel Jones has held a Michelin star at the restaurant since 2006 and with the help of restaurant manager Christopher Kidd The Park offers guests a truly unforgettable dining experience. Herbs are picked fresh from kitchen gardens daily and wherever possible ingredients are sourced locally.
Book Your Table: www.lucknampark.co.uk/dining
The Harrow at Little Bedwyn
Head Chef: John Brown
How much is dinner? The set 8 course gourmet tasting menu is priced very reasonably at £85pp. There is also a vegan tasting menu available.
What makes it special? Owned and run by Sue and Roger Jones, will be celebrating its 20th anniversary in the Autumn. It received its first Michelin Star in 2006 and has retained the Star every year since.
Book Your Table: theharrowatlittlebedwyn.com
The Bybrook at The Manor
Head Chef: Robert Potter
How much is dinner? The tasting menu is £95pp with additional wine pairings available for £55.00pp. There’s also a very tempting a la carte menu worth taking a look at.
What makes it special? Taking it’s name from the river that runs through this elegant hotel’s grounds, The Bybrook’s talented kitchen team create stunning seasonal dishes crafted from local ingredients. Executive Chef Robert Potter says he has “a dedicated focus to serving seasonal and classical food combinations” and his aim “is to create a relaxed fine-dining menu influenced by the seasons.’’
Book Your Table: www.exclusive.co.uk/the-manor-house/restaurants-bars/the-bybrook/
Have you visited any of these Michelin Star restaurants? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!