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FAQ about Harden's

General
  • What is Harden's?
    A. The handy restaurant guide...written by people just like you! Covering everything from the best fish and chip shops – via great gastropubs and perfect little local restaurants – to the grandest temples of haute cuisine, Harden's is probably the UK's most comprehensive independent restaurant guide.
  • What is the history of Harden's?
    A. Harden's was established by brothers Richard and Peter Harden in 1991, and Peter Harden still runs the business today. While working in the City and on Wall Street, Richard and Peter - both restaurant lovers - saw the success in America and Germany of handy pocket sized restaurant guides based on customer surveys. But nothing similar existed in the UK. So both quit their banking posts to launch the business. The first publication, Harden's London Restaurants, is the longest-established and nowadays the only annual guide to London restaurants widely available in bookshops. In 1998 a companion UK guide was published.
  • Where did the nickname 'Hoover' Harden come from?
    A. In his university days, Peter was secretary of the University Boat Club, at which time his legendary appetite earned him the nickname ‘Hoover’ Harden.
  • How can I keep up-to-date with the latest restaurant news from Harden's?
    A. Register on our website to receive monthly newsletters and to take part in our famous annual restaurant survey: Register here

    For daily updates on the hottest restaurant news be sure to follow Harden's on Twitter and 'Like' us on Facebook.

    A feed of Harden's latest reviews also appears on the Harden's iPhone/iPad app.
Harden's Annual Restaurant Survey
  • How do Harden's survey?
    A. We believe in “people power”: our guide is for ordinary diners, by ordinary diners.

    Every spring, we invite everyone who’s registered with our site to take part in our survey. We collect tens of thousands of reviews from 1,000s of ‘ordinary’ restaurant-goers, who tell us about their favourite and least-favourite experiences of the previous 12 months.

    Anybody can take part in our survey - Register here
  • Where can I find an explanation of the ratings?
    A. The reviews in the guides are based on a careful analysis of reporters' opinions – some 50,000-80,000 reports annually.

    What we do is to compare each restaurant's performance -- as judged by the average grades awarded by reporters in the survey -- with other restaurants in the same price-bracket.

    This approach has the advantage that it helps you find -- whatever your budget for any particular meal -- where you will get the best 'bang for your buck'.

    Particularly handy snippets from reports are incorporated into reviews. The aim is simple – to give you a short, straightforward review of the sort you might get from a trusted friend.

    See our website for further details: Ratings
  • How do I take part in Harden's survey?
    A. Register on our website to receive our monthly restaurant newsletters and an invitation to take part in our famous annual restaurant survey: Register here

    Our survey is launched each Spring and remains open for a few months. After signing up on our website, you will receive an invitation to submit your reports. You can also write reports throughout the year in your Restaurant Diary, and submit these before the survey closes in late-Spring.

    Upon completion of the survey, you will receive a free copy of the Harden's UK Restaurant Survey 2017 – which includes all the entries in Harden's London Restaurants, plus nearly 1,200 entries of restaurants across the length and breadth of the UK. It's the UK's most comprehensive restaurant survey – in your pocket.

    Please note: at least five reviews are, as a general rule, necessary in order to be counted as having taken part fully in the survey and to qualify for a free edition of the special reporters' edition of the guide. The editors' decision as to what constitutes full participation is final in all cases.
  • How do you ensure restaurants don't cheat in the survey?
    A. We have various checks and balances to ensure that our survey represents the views of genuine reporters. For various reasons, these cannot be defined.
  • What is The Sunday Times Food List?
    A. Now in its 6th year and researched by Harden's for the The Sunday Times, The Sunday Times Food List highlights the Top 100 Restaurants across Britain based on the quality of the food alone. Sunday Times Top 100 Restaurants
For Restaurateurs
  • How do I get my restaurant rated by Harden's?
    A. Please email our Editorial Department (editorial@hardens.com) a press kit, or a basic fact sheet on your restaurant. This should include all information on the restuaurant, as well as a brief description and an indication of prices. Photographs are also welcome for potential features – you may submit only photographs that we may use without the payment of any royalty. Interior and exterior (not food) shots preferred. We will then create a basic listing for your restaurant on our website. For a fully enhanced website listing that includes a photo gallery, your own restaurant description and menus, please contact editorial@hardens.com for details.

    Restaurants that are rated and included in the published survey are usually those which attract the most feedback from our reporters. We don't prompt our reporters with a list of restaurants, so don't worry if you haven't yet made it into our database! We encourage our reporters to tell us about restaurants not yet listed by Harden's.
  • Can I invite the Editors to visit my restaurant for a review?
    A. No – the Editors do not accept invitations to review restaurants.
  • I've noticed an error on a restaurant listing – who do I contact?
    A. Please email our Editorial Department (editorial@hardens.com) with details of the error. Please note it may take a few days for changes to be reflected on the website.
  • Can I invite the Editors to visit my restaurant for a review?
    A. No – the Editors do not accept invitations to review restaurants.
  • Can I advertise my restaurant on the Harden's site?
    A. Yes - please visit the section for further information.
  • I want to let our customers know we are rated in the Harden's Survey. Can I get a window or website sticker?
    A. Yes. Following the publishing of the UK Restaurant Survey, we send out window stickers to all restaurants included in the published survey.
  • We have an exciting new menu/head chef and opening hours etc. in the restaurant – can you update our listing?
    A. Yes, of course! Please email our Editorial Department (editorial@hardens.com) with details. Please only email us, however, with details we may wish to include on the website.
  • We have an event on in our restaurant we would like Harden's to know about – who do I contact?
    A. Please email our Editorial Department (editorial@hardens.com) with details of the event. We are always interested to hear from restaurants, PRs and bars on events that we may be able to include in our monthly newsletters.
For Reporters
  • I've noticed a closure/opening Harden's has yet to report. Can I tell you?
    A. Yes! Our reporters are an important source of news. Please email our Editorial Department (editorial@hardens.com) with details.
  • I've changed my email and/or postal address. How do I update this?
    A. Please log on to your member's area on our site.
Our Products
  • Where can I purchase your guides?
    A. Our guides are available to purchase directly from our website, and all major booksellers, virtual and physical.
Press enquiries
  • What is the best way to discuss a feature or ask for a quote?
    A. Please call us on 020 7839 4763 and ask for the Editorial Department.