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Michelin Guide 2020: a look every new Michelin-starred restaurant

Michelin Guide 2020: a look at every new Michelin-starred restaurant

by Great British Chefs 08 October 2019

The Michelin Guide for Great Britain and Ireland 2020 welcomed a record-breaking twenty-three new one-star restaurants into its hallowed pages, as well as four new two-stars. Find out more about this year’s new entries.


Despite the many challenges and pitfalls that beset the food industry currently, the quality of food in the UK and Ireland continues to go from strength to strength in the eyes of Michelin. 2020 has been a historic year, once again, with a record number of restaurants being welcomed or upgraded in the Michelin Guide.

London has for so long been the beating heart of the UK’s culinary scene; the capital still boasts a considerable chunk of the restaurants in the Michelin Guide, but the story this is year is surely a move away from the traditional epicentre, and into the countryside of Great Britain and Ireland. There were notable wins all over the UK – for Ben Crittenden at Stark in Kent, Michael Wignall at The Angel at Hetton in Yorkshire, Hywel Griffith at Beach House in Oxwich, Wales and for Lee Westcott with his new venture, Pensons.

Rafael Cagali’s Da Terra is one of four London restaurants – along with The Dysart Petersham, Endo at the Rotunda and Nuno Mendes’ Mãos – that enter the guide this year, though Le Dame de Pic won a second star, and Sketch Lecture Room and Library also receives the honour of a prestigious third Michelin star.

The biggest story of this year’s guide is in the often overlooked part of the guide: Ireland. Four Irish restaurants entered for the first time this year, including Aimsir, which debuted at two stars less than six months after opening in County Kildare. The Greenhouse in Dublin also won a second star, rounding off a fantastic year for Ireland.

Want to know more about the twenty-eight new entries in this year’s Michelin Guide? You’ve come to the right place – read on below, and check out the full list of results here.

New three-star restaurants

Sketch (Lecture Room and Library), London

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Pierre Gagnaire’s superlative London outpost has been steadily rising through the ranks of the Michelin Guide since 2005 when it first entered with a single star. It has grown in stature since then – this is unquestionably one of London’s most iconic dining rooms, made famous by a million Instagram stories, but the food matches up to the very highest standards London has to offer. Once you’ve ascended that staircase and taken a seat at your table under that domed glass ceiling, elegant French plates emerge in quick succession from the kitchen, where Johannes Nuding oversees Gagnaire’s eccentric, elegant cuisine. Sketch delivers style and substance in equal measure and now sits among the pantheon of great British restaurants.

New two-star restaurants

Aimsir, County Kildare, Ireland

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Aimsir has only been open for four months, but was tipped by many for a quick entry into the Michelin Guide this year. Few could have predicted that it would have jumped straight in at a two-star level, however – a rare feat that has now happened two years in a row (Core by Clare Smyth did the same last year). Aimsir is fiercely Irish – they only use Irish produce (save for sugar, which remains a work in progress) and invest great effort into preserving the best of Irish produce, creating a larder which contributes to one of Ireland’s most inventive tasting menus. Chef-owner Jordan Bailey – previously head chef at iconic Norwegian three-Michelin-starred Maaemo – is a serious talent.

Greenhouse, Dublin, Ireland

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No one was more excited to take the stage at this year’s Michelin awards than Greenhouse head chef Mikael Viljanen (who may have bruised one of host Raymond Blanc’s ribs in a crushing bear hug as he took to the stage). Greenhouse has been a leading light of Dublin’s resurgent dining scene for many years now, and Mikael delivers exceptional French cooking in a beautiful calming dining room. Mikael’s effervescence comes through in his cooking, which has classical sensibilities, but also real personality and a sense of fun.

La Dame de Pic, London

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Anne Sophie Pic is one of France’s most celebrated chefs – the first female chef in the nation’s history to hold three Michelin stars – so it should come as no major surprise that her London outpost has received a second star. Le Dame de Pic is a restaurant that steeps you in grandeur – mirrored columns and a beautiful domed ceiling give the dining room a palatial feel, and Anne Sophie’s clever dishes have a habit of revealing surprises as you eat them. Head chef Luca Piscazzi is the man responsible for carrying out her vision, and he collected the second star for the restaurant on her behalf.

The Dining Room at Whatley Manor, Wiltshire

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What a difference a couple of years can make. This time two years ago, The Dining Room at Whatley Manor was a new entry in the Michelin Guide, earning a star under the very capable leadership of an ambitious young head chef in Niall Keating. In leading Whatley Manor to a second star, Niall has proved to be more than just capable and ambitious – he’s one of the most talented chefs in the country, and The Dining Room at Whatley Manor is one of the UK’s very best dining experiences.

New one-star restaurants

Stark, Kent

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Tiny Stark on the Kentish coast at Broadstairs couldn’t be further from the palatial grandiosity of London’s magnificent hotel restaurants. Ben and Sophie Crittenden run this little eatery – open Wednesday to Saturday – on their own. There are a handful of tables, no toilets and barely room to swing a cat in between, but the food that comes out of the kitchen is superb, and delivered with great love.

Artichoke, Buckinghamshire

Laurie Gear has been through some journey with Artichoke – he opened the restaurant back in 2002, and was on the brink of awards success when a fire gutted the whole building. A stage at Noma followed, where Laurie learned a great deal from fellow chef and restaurateur Rene Redzepi. Artichoke reopened to great fanfare in 2010, scooping a number of awards, and it finally receives a much-deserved star nearly ten years later.

The Dysart Petersham, London

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This family-owned and run restaurant in quaint Petersham has quietly built a reputation for outstanding cooking, based on a foundation of ethical sourcing and sustainability. Head chef Kenneth Culhane won the Roux Scholarship in 2015, and is making his mark with brilliant classical cookery that makes the most of exceptional British produce.

The Cottage in the Wood, Cumbria

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This lovingly restored seventeenth-century cottage near Keswick offers some exceptional cooking in a wonderful location. Chef Ben Wilkinson focuses his efforts on Cumbrian produce – Herdwick lamb and West Coast shellfish feature prominently, as do flavours from the surrounding forests. Even the water comes from the restaurant’s own spring at the top of nearby Magic Hill!

Allium at Askham Hall

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After a big refurbishment early last year, Allium at Askham Hall has continued to grow in stature under the able leadership of chef Richard Swale. Once the home of the Earl of Lonsdale, Askham Hall is a stunning thirteenth-century estate, with twelve acres of majestic grounds to explore during your visit. The seasonal cycle in the gardens and beyond is what dictates the menu, with Cumbrian produce taking a front seat.

The Old Stamp House, Cumbria

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Another Cumbrian success story, The Old Stamp House is located in Ambleside, right in the heart of the Lake District. Chef Ryan Blackburn champions farmed and foraged local produce at The Old Stamp House, but he takes special pride in bringing Cumbria’s lesser-known specialities to the fore with his robust, homely cooking.

Da Terra, London

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Bethnal Green Town Hall has a considerable pedigree when it comes to good food – both Nuno Mendes and Lee Westcott have presided over restaurants in this venerable East London hotel. Now Rafael Cagali and Paulo Airaudo can add their names to that list – Da Terra has wowed London’s discerning diners with intriguing flavour combinations, and won a star at the first time of asking.

The Oak Room, County Limerick, Ireland

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The splendid oak-panelled dining room that sits at the heart of Adare Manor is now home to Limerick’s very first Michelin star. It’s a magnificent space full of rich wooden tones, magnificent chandeliers and old oil paintings, and thanks to chef Michael Tweedie and team, the food is more than a match for the opulence of the interior. The menu focuses on Limerick’s unheralded but outstanding local producers, delivering a stylish menu that evolves with the seasons.

Opheem, Birmingham

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Aston-born Aktar Islam has long deserved a place in the Michelin Guide; his old restaurant Lasan (also in Birmingham) was unquestionably one of the best Indian restaurants in the country. He left Lasan in 2017 to forge ahead with a new project – Opheem – which opened to much fanfare, and has quickly established itself as a trailblazer for modern Indian food.

Mana, Manchester

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Manchester’s forty-year wait for a Michelin star is over, thanks to chef Simon Martin and his restaurant Mana, which opened last October. For a chef that started as an intern at Noma in 2016, Simon is remarkably accomplished – the indelible marks of his time with Rene Redzepi are clear in his food philosophy and his menus, from the heavy use of preserves and pickles to unusual ingredients like beeswax, blackcurrant wood, roasted yeast and spruce.

The Angel at Hetton, North Yorkshire

A welcome return to the Michelin Guide for Michael Wignall, who left Gidleigh Park last year to move to Hetton with his wife and take over The Angel at Hetton – a beautiful restaurant with rooms in the heart of southern borders of the Yorkshire Dales. Michael started off serving burgers and chips when he first took over the pub, but he has since made his mark on the menu, turning The Angel at Hetton into a destination for superlative classical cookery.

Pensons, Worcestershire

For a chef with such a stellar reputation, Lee Westcott opened Pensons with relatively little fanfare at the beginning of this year. Slowly but surely, Lee and his team have made Pensons into a country retreat that matches anywhere else in the country. Lee’s food in particular is as good as it has ever been – elegant and precise, as it was at The Typing Room. With the bountiful 1,200-acre Netherwood Estate on his doorstep, perhaps that’s no surprise.

Beach House, Oxwich, North Wales

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Nestled deep in the Gower Peninsula, Beach House celebrates its Welsh roots in many ways – not only are all the menus and signage in Welsh as well as English, but chef Hywel Griffiths takes great pride in supporting Welsh producers in the Gower National Park and beyond. The menu is small – just four starters and four mains – but the menu changes regularly to match the seasons

Condita, Edinburgh

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With just six tables available every night and a blind tasting menu that changes daily, Condita is about as intimate an experience as you’ll find anywhere in the country. South African-born Conney Toomey left Isle of Eriska in 2017 to start up Condita, and his intuitive cooking style has made this humble little restaurant the hot ticket in Edinburgh – a city that boasts one of the most exciting food scenes in the UK.

Bastion, County Cork, Ireland

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This intimate little wine bar-cum-bistro has captured the imagination in Cork, delivering playful modern dishes that make the most of local produce, particularly excellent Irish seafood. The excellent tasting menu and equally impressive vegetarian tasting menu shows off chef Paul McDonald’s superb touch and creative mind for flavours.

Endo at the Rotunda, London

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Chef Endo Kazutoshi was visibly emotional when he collected his star at this year’s award ceremony. This Michelin star is the culmination of a long journey – he has cooked all over the world, in Madrid, Bilbao, Hong Kong, New York, Istanbul, and Dubai, before opening his solo venture in the iconic old BBC Television Centre. His omakase-style dining experience has only been open since April of this year – to enter the guide in the space of just six months speaks to the quality of Endo’s cookery.

Isle of Eriska, Eriksa, Scotland

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The Isle of Eriska – a brisk boat trip from Oban on Scotland’s west coast – may very well be one of the most beautiful parts of an exceedingly beautiful country, and now it boasts a restaurant that can also claim to be one of Scotland’s very best. Led by Graeme Cheevers – formerly head chef at Martin Wishart at Loch Lomond – the Isle of Eriska hotel delivers fantastic food that showcases the best of Scotland’s larder.

The Royal Oak, Warwickshire

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Ethical sourcing once again provides a foundation for superb cookery at The Royal Oak – a rural country pub in Warwickshire that has built a big reputation in a short amount of time. Chef Richard Craven puts his compact menus – just four mains, starters and desserts – together using whatever is bang in season at that moment.

Interlude, Sussex

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Horsham clearly has a thing for avant-garde tasting journeys. Some years ago, Matt Gillan made a name for himself at The Pass nearby with some weird and wonderful cookery. At Interlude, Jean Delport and team guide their guests through either a fourteen or a nineteen-course blind tasting menu, taking inspiration from the surrounding Leonardslee Gardens and countryside beyond. One for adventurous diners.

The Muddlers Club, Belfast

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The Muddlers Club joins Ox and Deanes Eipic as Northern Ireland’s third Michelin-starred restaurant. Chef Gareth McCaughey worked at Ox before leaving to start The Muddlers Club; there are parallels to draw between the two – a balance and attention to detail that serves them both extremely well – but The Muddlers Club delivers exceptional food in a relaxed, unfussy environment that has made it beloved in Belfast.

Alchemilla, Nottingham

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Alchemilla chef Alex Bond received his Michelin star a little earlier than the rest – it capped a fantastic year for the Nottingham restaurant, where they received three AA Rosettes and completed a new terrace area. With time spent at Auberge du Lac, Turners in Birmingham and nearby Restaurant Sat Bains, Alex has long been tipped to enter the guide. The future is bright for Alchemilla, and for Nottingham, which now boasts two Michelin-starred restaurants, more than both Manchester and Liverpool.

Mãos, London

Nuno Mendes started his career with a supper club of sorts, called ‘The Loft Project’, based out of his own flat in Dalston. It has been many years since The Loft Project closed, but with Mãos, Nuno is going back to his roots with a private, intimate dining experience, situated in a loft above the Blue Mountain School in Shoreditch. Eduardo Pellicano leads a tight knit kitchen team in delivering a typically adventurous menu that draws on myriad European influences.

Variety Jones, Dublin, Ireland

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Everything is cooked over open fire at this Dublin favourite. The compact menu changes often with seasonal ingredients coming and going, and alongside a smattering of individual dishes, you can also order ‘family style’ feasts. Chef Keelan Higgs cut his teeth at the excellent (and now two-Michelin-starred) Greenhouse nearby before striking out on his own.

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Michelin Guide 2020: a look at every new Michelin-starred restaurant

 
 

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