For the first time in the history of Estrella Damm’s National Restaurant Awards, the National Restaurant of the Year award has gone to a restaurant outside of England. Wales’ Ynyshir claimed the top spot off the back of its two-Michelin starred menu of unique, punchy, Japanese-influenced plates of wood-fired food served in a traditional country house hotel. Dining there is an immersive experience: thumping music from a DJ accompanies the meal, with diners served by the chefs. The restaurant also picked up an award for Best Restaurant in Wales. A bit obvious perhaps considering they beat the rest of the UK…
Coming in at second place on the list was Lancashire’s Moor Hall. The two-Michelin starred restaurant had previously held the top spot for the past two years. Moor Hall also won Best Restaurant In England at the awards. Rounding out the top three best restaurants in the UK was our very own (well, London’s very own) Shoreditch’s one-Michelin starred Brat.
How did the restaurants get picked?
Estrella Damm’s National Restaurant Awards are voted on annually by over 200 of the UK’s leading food experts and workers. The process takes 18 months to complete and produces a countdown of the top 100 restaurants in the UK. There are also a variety of awards for sustainability, exceptional service, drinks offerings, and for the chefs and restaurateurs themselves.
London restaurants dominated the list, with 60 of the top 100 spots. Meanwhile only 3 of the top 10 spots were not in London (1st, 2nd, and 10th place). Some of our favourites on the list include Manteca (#11), Kiln (#19), St John (#31), and the famed Chishuru (#93). Mayfair’s Bibi was the highest-ranked newcomer on the list at number five. Unsurprisingly they also netted Opening of the Year. For the first time an audience-pick was included, and the general public awarded the Food Lovers Award to Oxwich’s Beach House.
Now, if you’ll excuse us, we’ve got plenty of restaurants to add to our never-ending list of places to try. Anyone got a hook-up for reservations?