My Little Black Book of Restaurants
Restaurants I recommend you absolutely visit at least once in your life. A list which I will continue to add to so you can stay up to date with which restaurants you should visit next.
At the Chapel, Bruton
A beautifully renovated chapel in Somerset specialising in wood‑fired pizza: this place is a real treat. The spacious and minimalist decor is a fantastically modern contrast to the holy statues and large arched windows. Eating in this restaurant is a celestial experience. Their menu promises only the best ingredients and boasts a wide range of wonderful cocktails and wines. And if that’s not enough to persuade you, they even have an in‑house bakery serving a daily selection of baked delicacies (I recommend the brownie!) To experience fine dining without the extravagant price, At the Chapel is definitely one for you.
San Carlo Cicchetti, Covent Garden
This place is absolute HEAVEN for Italian food lovers. At San Carlo Cicchetti you don’t just order one dish‑it’s Italian tapas! The premise is that you order multiple dishes and share them with the table so you can have a proper taste of Italy. Their menu has something for everyone: seafood, pasta, pizza, arancini, carpaccio and an impressive selection of Italian wines. The only issue is choosing which dishes to order from their wonderfully diverse menu! I still think about their lobster ravioli which is so buttery and creamy‑ an essential dish to order if you’re a fan of seafood! While this restaurant is more high‑priced, it is worth it for the divine food, friendly service and great location.
The Jolly Sportsman, Lewes
A country pub in Sussex with a cosy dining area and a beautiful green garden. This place is the best of both worlds: fine dining meets the snug, warm and friendly environment of a pub. Their menu is wonderfully seasonal and you can tell that each dish has been crafted to ensure that only the best produce is served. I first visited The Jolly Sportsman on a chilly autumnal day and was greeted with a log fire, wonderful service and a hearty meal. If you’re looking for a pub that serves top‑quality food, then The Jolly Sportsman should definitely be on your ‘to visit’ list.
Thai Elephant, Street
This is the restaurant that kickstarted my love affair with Thai food. Thai Elephant embraces the traditional and comforting flavours from Thailand and each dish is obviously cooked with love. You are seated at an ornate wooden table with elephants carved into it and the service is always very friendly and fast. The restaurant has a great selection of meat, fish and vegetarian dishes ranging from curries, soups and noodles. The star of the show, however, is number 49a: Kai Pad Mapraw. This chicken curry is one of the best things I've ever eaten and just looking at the photo of it below makes my mouth water. The chicken is fried until golden and is served with delicately cooked red peppers and crunchy green beans. The sauce is rich, spicy and intense with flavours of chilli and lemongrass and is a must-try at Thai Elephant.