Bray retains Michelin pedigree as South East venues count their foodie stars
Chefs and gourmands alike gathered at the Midland Hotel in Manchester on Monday for the Michelin Guide Ceremony 2024, with a new set of Michelin stars handed out to restaurants across the country.
Stars are awarded for outstanding performance across five criteria – quality of ingredients; harmony of flavours; mastery of techniques; personality of the chef as expressed through their cuisine; and consistency, both across the entire menu and over time.
And while there were no new entries in the South East, all venues across the region retained their existing stars – plus, there are a handful of Green Stars (recognising a commitment to sustainability) and Bib Gourmands (for good quality, good value cooking) to celebrate.
This year saw Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons in Great Milton hang onto its two Michelin stars. Described as having a ‘classic French base’ but with a ‘light, modern touch’, it’s headed up by Raymond Blanc’s protégé, Luke Selby, and also holds a Green Star award.
Over in Murcott, the family-run Nut Tree Inn has held its single star since 2008 serving pub classics and seven-course tasting menus.
And The Bull in Charlbury picked up a Bib Gourmand at this year’s ceremony thanks to the efforts of James Gummer and Phil Winser, who also run The Pelican in Notting Hill.
No Michelin list is complete without mention of Bray, home to a pair of three-star venues – Heston Blumenthal’s Fat Duck and its innovative multi-sensory menu, and The Waterside Inn, where Alain Roux serves up a variety of French classics.
The Berkshire town also boasts another two-star restaurant in The Hinds Head, Heston’s ‘sweet, quintessentially English inn’, while Ascot diners can head to the single starred Woven by Adam Smith, a ‘tribute to exceptional British produce’.
Buckinghamshire has its own two-star offering, The Hand and Flowers in Marlow – just down the road from The Coach and its single star. Both are modern British offerings from Tom Kerridge putting a contemporary twist on the classics.
Over in Amersham is another single starred venue, Artichoke, headed up by self-taught chef-owner Laurie Gear.
Plus, the team at The Loch & The Tyne in Old Windsor are proud new owners of a Bib Gourmand for their good value pub grub.
Surrey, Kent & Sussex
Starting in Surrey, the county is home to two-star Latymer at Bagshot’s Pennyhill Park Hotel, as well as one-star Sorrel in Dorking and The Tudor Pass in Egham – the latter of which are both small, intimate venues with 10 and seven tables respectively.
For another year running, Kent is awash with Michelin stars – its single starred venues include The Bridge Arms, The Fordwich Arms, hide and fox (Saltwood), Stark (Broadstairs) and The Sportsman (Seasalter).
And West Sussex follows suit, with Ben Wilkinson at The Pass (Horsham), Gravetye Manor (East Grinstead), and Interlude (Lower Beeding).
Interlude also came away this year with a new Green Star for sustainable practices, as the restaurant sources a vast number of its ingredients – including honey from bee hives and sap from birch trees – from its 240-acre woodland estate.
Meanwhile, two internationally inspired East Sussex restaurants – Dill in Lewes and Palmito in Hove – were both awarded the Bib Gourmand on Monday.
For the full list of 2024 winners, visit the Michelin website.