Top 10 restaurants on chefs' bucket lists for 2017

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 3rd March 2017

From the first Danish restaurant to be awarded three stars in the Michelin Guide to a restaurant whose chef scored a perfect 10 on the Great British Menu, we found out which restaurants are on your bucket list for 2017.

We asked you which restaurants you would most like to visit this year. Here are the top 10 voted for by you.

10. The Forest Side, Grasmere, Cumbria

Minutes from Grasmere in the Lake District, Forest Side has 20 bedrooms and a 50 cover restaurant with a bar and lounge. Diners can settle into deep leather armchairs, take in the view over the 48 acre hotel grounds whilst enjoying a glass from the organic wine list. Chef, Kevin Tickle’s menu changes daily with different produce foraged from the walled garden and surrounding area. Out of season, Kevin uses techniques old and new to showcase the Cumbrian Larder by preserving, pickling and curing.

Forest Side

Fun fact: It took 18 months and £4 million to completely refurbish The Forest Side Hotel.

>>> Read our chat with Cal Byerley, Head Pastry Chef, Forest Side

9. Outlaw’s at the Capital, Knightsbridge, London

The seasonal menus showcase the best, sustainable seafood Cornwall has to offer, with fish shipped from the south coast on a daily basis. Head chef, Tom Brown leads the restaurant serving modern dishes that are delicately flavoured and ingredient-led. Menus change regularly and could include Crab Scotch Egg with Crab Sauce, Fennel & Dill or Brill with Jerusalem Artichoke, Oyster and Seaweed.

Fun fact: Nathan Outlaw is a cookbook fanatic and admits to owning nearly 400 cookbooks in his front room. Outlaw’s at The Capital is Nathan Outlaw’s only restaurant outside of Cornwall.

>>> Related: Tom Brown, Head Chef, Outlaw's at the Capital 

8. Brae restaurant, Victoria, Australia

Brae is a contemporary restaurant with six luxury guest suites where diners can kick back, relax and ramble through the restaurant’s 30 acre organic farm. Chef and owner, Dan Hunter produces seasonal vegetables, fruits and even olives for his organic extra virgin oil. Dan’s signature dish is an inventive parsnip and apple dessert; a fried parsnip skin with apple and parsnip mousse and caramel flavoured with apple and chamomile tea.

Brae Restaurant

Fun fact: Before opening Brae, chef Dan Hunter spent six years leading the kitchen of Dunkeld’s Royal Mail Hotel and was head chef at Mugaritz, Spain.

7. The Ledbury, Notting Hill, London

There are no fireworks, theatricality or whacky plates at Brett Graham’s The Ledbury. Instead diners can expect simple yet smart dining where the service is smooth and engaging. The dishes are understated but reveal layers of stunning flavour as the quality of Graham’s produce and flavour combinations shine through. One of Graham’s most iconic dishes is flame-grilled mackerel with smoked eel, Celtic mustard and shiso. The tasting menu is only served at dinner on weekends.

Fun fact: Graham has started using a probiotic technique to produce compost made from 100% kitchen waste. These are given out to customers in 5kg bags to take home for their gardening needs.

>>> Read our interview with Sam Lucas, Restaurant Manager, The Ledbury

6. Faviken, Järpen, Sweden

In the forests and mountains of Jamtland, 375 miles north of Stockholm, Faviken is the world’s most isolated restaurant. It stands on a 20,000 acre hunting estate with accommodation for those who make the long journey north. The restaurant is run by chef Magnus Nilsson, who makes the most of produce that is rarely found anywhere else in the world. He and his chefs forage, hunt and fish for ingredients in the area to serve at Faviken. During the long winter, the kitchen serves mostly foods harvested in the summer and then preserved using local methods, including drying, salting and pickling.


Fun fact: Chef, Magnus Nilsson is a huge hotdog fan. He has launched multiple kiosks and converted a camper van into a hotdog truck to tour music festivals.

5. Restaurant Story, Tooley St. London

Tom Sellers’ Restaurant Story takes a novel approach to British classics. Aiming to tell the story of Tom’s childhood through the food they serve, each dish is beautifully presented and accompanied with its own background story, turning the whole meal into a magical experience. Tom’s signature dish, ‘bread and dripping’, is a lit candle made of beef tallow and has become legendary across the UK. As the candle melts you dip the homemade bread into the melted beef dripping. Delicious!

Fun fact: Diners can leave a book behind when they visit Restaurant Story, becoming a part of the story themselves.

>>> Related: 10 Minutes With: Tom Sellers - A Kind of Love Story

4. Sat Bains, Nottingham

Regarded as the best restaurant in the East and Midlands, chef Sat’s impressive array of modern British cuisine has won him many fans. He has been recognised by fellow chefs and food writers from all over the world for his innovative style of cuisine. The menu is all about taste, texture and temperature and, proud of his Midlands roots, Sat has long championed the use of quality local produce in his menus. The restaurant’s signature dish NG7 2SA (its postcode) is based on ingredients found on the banks of the River Trent.

Fun fact: In 2007, Sat Bains’ Duck egg with pea texture scored the perfect 10 on the Great British Menu.

3. The Black Swan at Oldstead, North Yorkshire

Owned by the Banks’ family who have farmed the North Yorkshire area for generations, The Black Swan is run by brothers, James and Tommy Banks. You can enjoy an aperitif in the characterful bar before heading upstairs to the candlelit restaurant. The menus showcase meat and produce directly from their farm and garden which is maintained by Tommy and his chefs, whilst the dishes come with wine recommendations from James. There is a sense that the Banks’ family and team have a real connection with the food they serve.

The Black Swan at Oldstead

Fun fact: At 24, Tommy Banks was the youngest person in Britain to be awarded a Michelin Star but has never had any formal training.

>>> Read our interview with Tommy Banks, head chef/owner, The Black Swan at Oldstead

2. Midsummer House, Cambridge, England

Midsummer House has become something of an institution in British gastronomy with Daniel Clifford being hailed as one of the country’s most respected chefs. On the edge of the River Cam, the restaurant has a sun terrace for guests, and a walled garden with herbs and two signature apple trees which feature in the restaurants signature dish, scallop, truffle and apple. Daniel’s menu focuses on the most seasonal produce and his dishes are developed to make sure the taste is as natural as possible. The food along with the relaxed ambience and informal service style make dining at Midsummer House a truly worthwhile experience.

Fun fact: Midsummer House was once owned in 1980 by Chris Kelly, the familiar face of the Food and Drink TV programme on BBC.

1. Restaurant Geranium, Copenhagen, Denmark

Geranium restaurant won its third Michelin star in 2016, making it the first Danish restaurant to be awarded 3 stars. Kofoed presents Scandinavia’s wild herbs and organic produce delicately on the plate and the dishes are served to guests directly by the chefs. You’ll never be short of a choice of wine either, as the wine list has around 1,900 different labels on offer, all stored in temperature controlled rooms at one end of the restaurant.

Restaurant Geranium

Fun fact: Kofoed is the only chef to have ever won bronze, silver and gold at the prestigious Bocuse d’Or cooking competition in France.

>>> Related: Vollmer and Henne Kirkeby Kro each receive 2 stars in the Nordic Cities Michelin Guide 2017

So there you have it, the top 10 restaurants you would most like to dine in given the chance. 

By Lauren Phillips

Do you agree with this list, are there any we haven't mentioned? Let us know in the comments below.

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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 3rd March 2017

Top 10 restaurants on chefs' bucket lists for 2017