Hardens Guide to the Best Restaurants in Amersham
Hardens guides have spent 32 years compiling reviews of the best Amersham restaurants. On Hardens.com you'll find details and reviews of 73 restaurants in Amersham and our unique survey based approach to rating and reviewing Amersham restaurants gives you the best insight into the top restaurants in every area and of every type of cuisine.
Featured Amersham Restaurants
1. Hawkyns by Atul Kochhar Indian restaurant in Amersham 16 High Street - HP7
If you remember ‘Four weddings’, this very characterful, beamed sixteenth-century pub in the town centre was the filming location for the bit where Hugh and Andie first start getting it together. Its food in recent years has been overseen by star Indian chef, Atul Kochhar, and is a highly rated curry favourite in (nearly) all reports.
2. Sindhu Indian restaurant in Marlow The Compleat Angler - SL7
“Incredibly original Indian cuisine served gracefully in a wonderful location” makes this well-commented-on Marlow destination one of the country’s top grand Indians outside the capital. “A beautiful dining room overlooking the Thames” and with a “fabulous view of Marlow Weir” (gorgeous in daytime, perhaps less impactful at night) is the venue for “an enormously enjoyable, fine-dining take on Indian cuisine that’s beautifully presented,: “with lovely spicing, but never being overwhelmed by too much heat”. It’s “one of those experiences where practically everything is spot on”.
3. Orwells British, Traditional restaurant in Shiplake Shiplake Row - RG9
“Exquisite” cooking is commended by diners at Ryan & Liam Simpson-Trotman’s well-rated venue, near Henley, where numerous reporters had their best meal of the year in our latest annual survey. There is a ten-course tasting menu for £130, but you don’t have to go the whole hog: there’s also a ‘half menu’ option (at £80) and an à la carte offering.
4. Caldesi in Campagna Italian restaurant in Bray Old Mill Ln - SL6
“Within walking distance of the Monkey Island and Bray high street” – Giancarlo & Katie Caldesi’s “relaxed sister establishment to Caldesi in Marylebone” occupies a converted house complete with “a great bar and attractive glasshouse-type” addition. The dishes from its “excellent, typically Italian menu” are, say fans, “fantastic” and “the cost is rather like loose change compared to the nearby Fat Duck”.
5. La Trompette British, Modern restaurant in Chiswick 5-7 Devonshire Rd - W4
“Still worth the schlep across town”, says an E18-based fan of this “elegant corner of Chiswick” – “a brilliant, upscale neighbourhood restaurant” in a quiet backwater off the high street, which fans say is “pretty much on a level with its sibling Chez Bruce”; and which regularly features in the Top 40 most-mentioned restaurants in our annual diners’ poll. Like its famous Wandsworth Common stablemate, its culinary attractions include modern British cuisine that’s “up to date, with ingredients centre stage,” “complemented by a very fine wine list,” and with “a very good cheese selection”. But whereas reports this year often match the flawless pattern established over two decades (“just effortlessly excellent…”; “we have been regulars for a decade…never disappoints…”; “post-lockdown it continues to shine…”), there is also a growing minority concern that “while the food is still very good, the service has slipped”, with quite a few accounts of a “haphazard and brusque” experience. “Maybe it’s just because of these difficult times…”
6. The French Horn French restaurant in Sonning-on-Thames
“The setting on the Thames at Sonning Eye is just fantastic, but better still, the quality of the food that comes out of the kitchen is always first class”, according to fans of this long-established and well-known Thames-valley institution, which has been owned by the Emmanuel family since 1972. “If you like formal, this is the place to go”, and while fans acknowledge that “it’s a little pricey”, they feel the investment is “well worth it for special occasions”. As well as its signature duck, spit-roasted over an open fire, it’s “very impressive wine list” is another feature (“we call it ‘The Bible’”).
7. Artichoke French restaurant in Amersham 9 Market Sq - HP7
Laurie Gear’s “exceptional restaurant nestling in Old Amersham” has been “a favourite for two decades” and – having opened in 2002 – was “belatedly awarded a Michelin star” in 2019. “The best restaurant for miles” in this part of the outer burbs, it is one of the most commented-on restaurants in our annual diners’ poll. One or two reports did include some ‘rough edges’ this year (“a return to form after a former disappointment…”; “a couple of dishes were odd, but never boring!”) but the main theme was of “divine” food, “exceptional value tasting menus” and “delightful matching wines”, all delivered by “attentive and knowledgeable staff”. “I almost hate to give a good review as more people will find this true gem!”
8. Tom Yum Thai restaurant in Amersham 101 Sycamore Road - HP6
“Really good Thai cooking” inspires high ratings and positive feedback for this simple local fixture. “It’s a bit cramped when it’s full, but the take-home is good”.
9. The Grocer at 15 British, Modern restaurant in Amersham 15 The Broadway - HP7
2022 Review: The Grocer at 91 pivoted to being a food shop during the pandemic and all the eating now happens at this intimate sibling café, whose 24 covers are expanded by three tables outside, and where the mostly vegan menu spans satisfying, well-priced salads, toasties and locally made cakes. Their Gerrards Cross branch is now under new management, operating as Huddle.
10. Gilbey’s British, Modern restaurant in Amersham 1 Market Sq - HP7
A fixture of Old Amersham for more than 30 years, this bistro from Michael Gilbey of the gin dynasty is a “fab example of old-school dining” – quite literally, given that the seventeenth-century premises were originally part of Dr Challoner’s Grammar School. Even long-time fans, though, have begun to grumble that “having been a favourite for years, it has become more ordinary – not bad but no longer worth a journey”. There’s a sister branch in Eton.
11. The Bricklayers Arms British, Traditional restaurant in Flaunden Hogpits Bottom - HP3
Emphatically “not your most ordinary pub” – this ivy-clad Georgian boozer in a “lovely countryside setting” has been well run by Sally & Alvin Michaels for twenty-odd years, and boasts a “good menu of delicious food”.
12. The Jolly Cricketers British, Modern restaurant in Seer Green 24 Chalfont Rd - HP9
This “good village pub” excels for its “lovely grub” and “friendly staff”. Landlord Chris Lillitou grew up in the village, and took over the pub with his wife, Tante-Claire-trained Amanda Baker, 15 years ago.
13. The Royal Standard of England British, Traditional restaurant in Beaconsfield Forty Green - HP9
This “atmospheric 900-year-old pub” – quite possibly the oldest free house in England – is “full of nooks and crannies” and has “bags of charm and character” (it’s a popular film and TV set, and sometimes is closed for filming). There’s a menu of “very good pub classics”, with “homemade sausages and mash” a popular option.
14. The Cape Grand Cafe & Restaurant British, Modern restaurant in Beaconsfield 6a, Burkes Parade - HP9
This “friendly and popular local cafe” has won an enviable reputation over two decades for its “spectacular breakfast or brunch, with South African specialities”. On Friday and Saturday nights they gear up for proper evening meals with various bobotie and braai variations, too.
15. No.5 London End British, Traditional restaurant in Beaconsfield 5 London End - HP9
2019 Review: “A small but quality establishment” – this contemporary two-year-old café aims to bring gastropub-style fare onto the high street and succeeds, serving “top burgers, and lots of other yummy offerings”.
16. The Greyhound British, Modern restaurant in Beaconsfield 33 Windsor End - HP9
“Beautiful building… beautiful food… beautiful people” – Daniel Crump and Margriet Vandezande-Crump have transformed this old pub (since they took it over in 2019) to create a “wonderful” destination in this chichi town, once devoid of much in the way of culinary interest. They are not only “amazing hosts” (“and have put together a fantastic team”) but also “constantly innovating as well as working actively in the local community”. “The menu changes rapidly to reflect the best seasonal ingredients at any time of year” and the “strong standard of cooking” adds to a “wonderful” offering all-round.
17. Three Oaks British, Traditional restaurant in Gerrards Cross Austenwood Ln - SL9
With its “beautifully presented, delicious food”, this “better-than-standard gastropub justifiably attracts custom from a wide area” – and its heated ‘Oak pods’ are popular for outdoor eating in all seasons. It’s run by Harry Cripps and his wife Katherine, daughter of the late broadcaster Terry Wogan – whose brothers run the London pizza specialist Homeslice.
18. The Gatsby British, Modern restaurant in Berkhamsted 97 High St - HP4
2021 Review: “Well cooked and presented meals” – and “good value”, too – are served at this unusual venue in the foyer of the beautifully preserved 1930s Rex cinema. There’s also a cocktail bar with live pianist – and a particularly strong lunch and pre-film menu.
19. Zaza Italian restaurant in Berkhamsted 21-23 Lower Kings Road - HP4
2022 Review: Set in a “lovely building” with tables under a 200-year-old olive tree, this restaurant – one of eight in a local chain – is frequently packed with regulars, who come back for its “good honest Italian fare at a reasonable price”. There’s “something for everyone on the menu”.
20. Prime Steak & Grill Steaks & grills restaurant in Chandler's Cross Redhall Lane - WD3
“Lovely steaks and Sunday roasts” plus “lots of fresh vegetables and salads” tick the boxes at this local trio (branches in St Albans and Beaconsfield), specialising in British grass-fed beef, dry-aged on the bone. The banquette seating and kids’ activity sheets and menu make them good “family-friendly” eating options.
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