survey result

Summary

£231
£££££
5
Exceptional
5
Exceptional
4
Very Good
* Based on a three course dinner, half a bottle of wine, coffee, cover charge, service and VAT.

“World-class cooking from the best female chef in the country” inspires nothing but reams of rapturous reports on Clare Smyth’s “seemingly effortless and very special” Notting Hill HQ – again the No. 1 gastronomic choice in our annual diners’ poll and “well deserving its three Michelin stars” (the same of which could not be said for most of London’s other holders of these laurels). The “virtuoso” cuisine is “simply exquisite” yet “without seeming pretentious”: it says something that one of this Northern Irish farmer’s daughter’s key signature dishes is made out of potato! “Everything from the welcome, the theatre of the kitchen, the execution of the cooking, the comprehensive wine list, the crisp, airy and bright dining room and the enthusiastic and delightful service” provides a “profoundly good experience with incredible attention to detail”. “Clare is in the kitchen each time” and regularly greets guests personally, and “although the bill is high, it is not outlandish for the culinary performance that is delivered”. “Always at the top of its game” – ratings here have held very steady in a year that has seen wobbles at many of its rivals.

Summary

£226
£££££
5
Exceptional
5
Exceptional
4
Very Good
* Based on a three course dinner, half a bottle of wine, coffee, cover charge, service and VAT.

“The best restaurant in London” – Clare Symth’s “supreme” Notting Hill five-year-old once again topped our diners’ poll as the capital’s No. 1 gastronomic experience: “a real triumph”. And yet, while “it’s a special place, the experience is not over-wrought”: “it deftly straddles that line between fine dining but not being stuffy”. “Clare and head chef Jonny Bone run a great kitchen”, but they achieve “the finest cooking without it being up-your-arse mucked around, just with the beautiful presentation of seasonal ingredients” all “served with flair and precision in a fine dining room”. “The friendly and very efficient front of house team is led by Rob Rose. And when it comes to wine we always rely on sommelier Gareth’s recommendations. He has never let us down yet and works within a sensible budget”. “Clare and Jonny always greet you: in fact, everyone says hi and has time to chat. Save up your money and spend it here!”

Summary

£130
£££££
5
Exceptional
5
Exceptional
4
Very Good
* Based on a three course dinner, half a bottle of wine, coffee, cover charge, service and VAT.

“Where’s a fourth Michelin star when you need one?” – Clare Smyth’s “world-class” Notting Hill luminary offers “a supreme gastronomic experience” and now dominates our diners’ poll, topping not just votes as top gastronomic experience and highest food rating, but also the most-mentioned restaurant this year: an incredible achievement for somewhere charging top dollar. “From the moment you walk in to the moment you leave, everything is perfect”, but “despite being in the top echelons of restauration, everyone is so friendly and unstuffy” and “Clare and head chef Jonny Bone always make time to say ‘hi’ from the kitchen doorway”. The service (led by Rob Rose) is so smooth and slick “it’s almost like a ballet” and “Gareth Ferreira’s ability to pair wines is also exceptional”. When it comes to the cuisine itself, the third Michelin star awarded in January 2021 was “well-warranted and overdue” thanks to the “unsurpassed levels of sophistication, technical expertise, and the sheer culinary pleasure of the majestic tasting menu”. Dishes are “consistently bursting with flavour” (“I have never been so excited by a potato dish!”) and “look like works of art”; while “vegetarians and pescatarians are clearly no afterthought”. “After two cancellations for Covid restrictions I finally made it… well worth the money!”.

Summary

£122
£££££
5
Exceptional
4
Very Good
4
Very Good
* Based on a three course dinner, half a bottle of wine, coffee, cover charge, service and VAT.

“The third Michelin star must be on its way” say fans of Clare Smyth’s “world class” one-year-old, which – after its “brilliant start” – is much “better than Restaurant Gordon Ramsay Royal Hospital Road” (her former gig); and was the most-nominated restaurant in the survey this year for providing London’s top gastronomic experience. Occupying the Notting Hill venue that some still recall as Leith’s (long RIP), she has created a “smart-but-unintimidating” space, where “superb, friendly, and unpompous staff” steer a course between “slight informality” (no tablecloths) and being “highly professional”. And “Clare and head chef Johnnie always make time to say hello”. “So much original thought has gone in” to the “masterfully-blended dishes, showing occasional idiosyncratic touches” to create “precise, exquisite morsels that look like art on a plate and taste fabulous (if at a high price tag)”. “Words aren’t enough to describe the journey your taste buds go on!”. “Unfortunately, however, it has become almost impossible to book”. Top Menu Tip – “I never thought a potato could taste that good!”

For 33 years we've been curating reviews of the UK's most notable restaurant. In a typical year, diners submit over 50,000 reviews to create the most authoritative restaurant guide in the UK. Each year, the guide is re-written from scratch based on this survey (although for the 2021 edition, reviews are little changed from 2020 as no survey could run for that year).

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Restaurant details

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Core by Clare Smyth Restaurant Diner Reviews

Reviews of Core by Clare Smyth Restaurant in W11, London by users of Hardens.com. Also see the editors review of Core by Clare Smyth restaurant.
Peter G
Dinner just doesn’t get better than this,...
Reviewed 2 months, 13 days ago

"Dinner just doesn’t get better than this, with the best service in London. "

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Teresa H
Exceptional food and very friendly staff....
Reviewed 2 months, 15 days ago

"Exceptional food and very friendly staff."

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Tim J
My third visit to Core and I like it more a...
Reviewed 3 months, 1 day ago

"My third visit to Core and I like it more and more. If I was wealthy enough I'd eat here once a month - which to me speaks of comfort and ambience, but also of the variety that comes with a la carte and a somehow heartily exquisite style of cooking that makes it - while of course a special occasion - an occasion that I can keep repeating, unlike the more theatrical fine dining choices. "

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Prices

Availability 2 courses 3 courses coffee included service included
Lunch   £155.00
Dinner   £175.00
  Cost Availability Courses
Menu1 205.00 Always available 7
Menu2 225.00 Always available 7
Drinks  
Wine per bottle £50.00
Filter Coffee £5.00
Extras  
Bread £0.00
Service 12.50%
92 Kensington Park Rd, London, W11 2PN
Opening hours
MondayCLOSED
Tuesday6:30 pm‑9:45 pm
Wednesday6:30 pm‑9:45 pm
Thursday12 pm‑2:15 pm, 6:30 pm‑9:45 pm
Friday12 pm‑2:15 pm, 6:30 pm‑9:45 pm
Saturday12 pm‑2:15 pm, 6:30 pm‑9:45 pm
SundayCLOSED

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