Ordinary diners who take part in our annual survey each spring review restaurants and leave their feedback, but we also ask them to score restaurants from 1-5 on food, service and ambience. Harden’s then uses an average of these scores and measures them against other establishments in the same price bracket to arrive at the ratings published in the guide and online.
Snippets from some of your feedback may end up in the overall Harden’s review, noticeably they appear in “double quotation marks”. The rest of our pithy, bite-sized restaurant summaries are compiled by analysing the survey data and extracting recurring themes, looking at whether or not a venue was nominated in any of our categories – like ‘favourite’ or ‘most overpriced’ – and, of course, looking at the ratings for food, service and ambience.
The Harden’s ratings indicate that a restaurant is:
All reviews are compiled from survey comments and ratings, without any regard for our own personal opinions, except in cases where restaurants are too new to have been included in the survey. If you want the editors’ view on new restaurants in London you can find them in our Editors’ Review section.
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Parker’s Tavern, Cambridge Jay Rayner for The Observer starts his review by describing Tristan Welch’s Parker’s Tavern restaurant as “a dining room where the most fundamental of emotions are tended to”. You can just tell he loved every inch of it. The cooking was “a display of extremely assured, confident cooking designed purely to please […]
Gilpin Spice, Windermere Jay Rayner for The Observer was in Windermere, visiting Gilpin Spice at Gilpin Lodge in the Lake District, described as “an act of bravery, fashioned from raw wood, vibrant dangling lampshades, tamarind, garlic, ginger, noodles and open guttering flames”. The food is best described as “Desi-Chinese food, a venerable amalgam of Chinese […]
Monsieur Le Duck, London E1 Jay Rayner for The Observer visited the nostalgic new pop-up from City worker-turned-restaurateur Richard Humphreys, who dreamed of Gascony, with its restaurants serving duck confit and red wine, and decided to bring his dreams to Liverpool Street. The result is “delightful in a low-key, sweetly romantic way”; the “narrow frame […]
Olle, London W1 Jay Rayner for The Observer became the living window display he has so often admired when he dined at Olle, a Korean barbeque joint on Shaftesbury Avenue. The menu at Olle will be “broadly familiar” to those have tended to their own hotplate before – here, “they just do it very well” […]
Pucci, London W1 Jay Rayner for The Observer reviewed Mayfair newcomer Pucci, revived from its bygone King’s Road days by the founder’s son (the original closed in 2010). Decorated like “a wealthy person’s version of a humble farmhouse”, it’s the sort of room “in which you can have a very good time, though ideally with […]
Imperial Treasure, London SW1 Did the chefs at Imperial Treasure recognise Jay Rayner when he visited for The Observer? They chased him to the toilet, so one presumes so. Why then, did they take away his Peking duck (for which he paid a “nose-bleeding… shameless” £100) half-eaten? Astonishing. It tainted the rest of his meal, […]