Urban Grill is the latest venture from Alan Tomkins and chef Derek Marshall. This urban-chic restaurant offers top-quality all-day casual dining, with a menu based on classic dishes, prepared using the freshest ingredients, which are sourced locally wherever possible. Signature dishes include fish soup with prawn dumplings, urban fishcake with chilli-spiced salsa, sticky pork ribs with pickled ginger - and for those with a sweet tooth - banana, coconut and maple syrup cheesecake.
Urban Grill, click to enlarge
Dining Room, click to enlarge
NORTH WEST ENGLAND
Dining Room -
Diners here praise the 'serious skill behind the stoves' - the skill proclaimed is head chef Andrew Robinshaw, who was previously second chef for Christian Germain at Chateau de Montreuil and then part of the team at Marcus Wareing's Pétrus, which is now truly emerging as one of the capital's top restaurants.'. Robinshaw returned to his North Western roots to open Dining Room, where he creates modern interpretations of classically-inspired dishes using the best of local, seasonal ingredients. Dishes include The Dining Room's boudin blanc laced with Bury black pudding, caramelized apple pearls and cider emulsion, and braised chicken terrine laced with foie gras on a toasted brioche with red onion marmalade.
NORTH EAST ENGLAND
Jesmond Dene House -
In a leafy setting just outside Newcastle, Jesmond Dene House is a boutique hotel and restaurant - the realisation of a dream for its owners, leading local chef Terry Laybourne and property developer partner Peter Candler. Head chef Jose Graziosi - formerly of Rick Stein's Seafood Restaurant - leads the kitchen, where the emphasis is on creating fine and flavoursome dishes, which are created with talent and passion. The menu is inspired by the seasons and the best of local produce - asparagus and tender lamb in spring, game and wild mushrooms in autumn.
Jesmond Dene House, click to enlarge
Cotto, click to enlarge
Cotto - Cambridge
Reporters praised this restaurant for its 'wonderful, fresh organic food and its fantastic attention to detail'. Due to demand for chef Jack van Praag's dishes, the restaurant - traditionally open only at lunchtimes - now opens in the evenings. Van Praag's menu features dishes with a Mediterranean feel, such as risotto of Cromer crab with new season pea, wild mint & lemon, and guinea fowl breast braised in Cambridge ale, cream, portobellini mushrooms and tarragon, served with crushed new potatoes and new season celeriac. Many of the products used in the restaurant are available for sale in the downstairs shop, including freshly-made bread, cakes and fresh grown vegetables.
Lawton's at No. 16 -
Lawton's at No. 16 has built up a local following for its excellent dishes using quality regional produce, such as organic Welsh beef and lamb, and lobster and crab from local fishermen. Head chef Steve Lawton has 27 years' experience in the catering trade. His wife Kim oversaw the design of the restaurant and is often on hand during service to give a personal welcome to customers. Reporters praise Lawton's as simply 'a lovely place to be'.
Lawton's, click to enlarge
Sticky Prawn, click to enlarge
SOUTH WEST ENGLAND
Sticky Prawn -
This quayside restaurant is fêted by reporters for its relaxed atmosphere and for its enthusiastic staff, who are all passionate about seafood. Paul and Ben Lightfoot make up a father-and-son team - Ben heading up the kitchen and Paul looking after front-of-house. Their menu includes as many as eight locally-caught seafood and fish dishes which change on a daily basis, depending on the day's catch, along with an ever-changing selection of local meats and poultry which change every three weeks.
SOUTH EAST ENGLAND
Pebble Beach -
Pebble Beach is the result of proprietor Mike Caddy's 20 years' experience and the dedication and excellence of head chef Pierre Chevillard. Chevillard was previously head chef at Chewton Glen, during which time the dining room held a Michelin star. Classically French-trained, Chevillard combines his experience with his skill of incorporating new ides from all over the world, to create a diverse and exciting menu. This includes regularly-changing specials - anything from Breton fish soup to salad of crispy duck, or escalopes of veal filled with cured ham and sage with saffron risotto.