Michelin Star Restaurants to Delight and Excite
Published: Monday 5th Jan 2015
Written by: Alice de Courcy-Wheeler
As a nation we are partial to some of the finer things in life, one of those things being a great plate of food! But why settle for great when you can experience something excellent, something that delights and excites you, something groundbreaking. To give you an idea we’ve handpicked some of Britain’s best, and in some cases surprising, Michelin star restaurants where you can spoil that special someone.
The Masons Arms in Knowstone, Devon, is a 13th Century pub set amongst the rural Devonshire countryside on the border of Exmoor. It’s thatch roof and rustic interior with open fire make it a somewhat unlikely place for Michelin star cuisine, but the food here speaks for itself, and head chef and owner Mark Dodson has kept his Michelin star status for eight years. The dining experience is certainly unique as you start off by strolling down to the local watering hole for a pint and then, before you know it, you’re feasting on the finest local produce lovingly represented - a true diamond in the rough.
If, perhaps, you wanted to take your culinary journey to the next level, then The West House Restaurant in the town of Biddenden, Kent, is the place to be. The modest and comfortable dining room makes the perfect set for owner and chef Graham Garrett and head chef Ben to stage their latest food creations. Seasonal produce of the highest quality holds a firm place in Graham’s food philosophy as he strives for clean flavours inspired by the land and sea where many of the ingredients are grown.
When holidaying in Norfolk, The Neptune in Old Hunstanton on the north-west Norfolk Coast is a real find, but easily missed if you don’t know what to look for. Situated next to Caley Hall Hotel on the A149 coast road, it appears on your left when approaching from the west and right when from the east. As you get nearer, outside what appears to be a quaint Norfolk cottage, the blue sign delicately immerges advertising The Neptune Restaurant with Rooms. Awarded a Michelin star in 2009, owner and chef Kevin Mangeolles has retained a high level of precision and style in his cooking which reflects the restaurant's coastal surroundings.
Restaurant Nathan Outlaw, currently based within St. Enodoc Hotel in Rock, Cornwall, with plans to relocate to the neighbouring village of Port Isaac in early spring, is a seafood restaurant with two Michelin stars. Nathan Outlaw is a food heavyweight whose passion for fish and shellfish is well known, especially among food enthusiasts, and influences his cookery on every level. The restaurant offers an eight course tasting menu with accompanying wines and the option to dine vegetarian for those who prefer. Its location is wonderfully aquatic with vibrant sea views and the Rock Sailing & Waterski Club being the focal point of beach activity.
In the northern half of Dartmoor National Park, Devon, you will find Gidleigh Park, a luxury country house hotel where executive head chef Michael Caines has been working since 1994, achieving two Michelin stars within five years which the restaurant has held ever since. Eating here comes with a certain grandeur, which is matched by the hotel’s fabulous surroundings and also by Michael’s carefully crafted menus that are tailored to suit almost every occasion. Whether it’s full afternoon tea for two, the eight course Signature Menu or a private dining you’ll always remember, Gidleigh Park is certainly worth a visit.