Pollen Street Social named best new UK restaurant in Good Food Guide awards

By Becky Paskin

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Good food guide, Gordon ramsay, Heston blumenthal

Pollen Street Social is the first solo venture for former Gordon Ramsay protege Jason Atherton
Pollen Street Social is the first solo venture for former Gordon Ramsay protege Jason Atherton
Jason Atherton’s Pollen Street Social has been named the best new UK restaurant by the Good Food Guide 2012 (GFG), entering its list of the UK’s Top 50 Restaurants at number eight.

Gordon Ramsay’s Maze protégé opened his first solo restaurant to mixed reviews in April this year, but has now been awarded a cooking score of 8/10 by the guide.

Pollen Street Social, which was awarded the Best New Entry accolade, jumps straight into the list ahead of Claude Bosi’s Hibiscus and Philip Howard’s The Square, at numbers nine and ten respectively.

Elizabeth Carter, consultant editor of The Good Food Guide, said: “Pollen Street Social was one of the most eagerly awaited London openings of 2011 and it is a triumph. Pace-setting invention has always defined Jason’s style and this newly energized chef is cooking better than ever.”

Once again, and for the fourth year running, Heston Blumenthal’s three-Michelin starred restaurant The Fat Duck in Bray topped the list in first position with a continued score of 10/10 – an accolade only used to define a restaurant that ‘can achieve perfect dishes on a consistent basis’.

The chef’s London restaurant, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, which opened in December last year, achieved a score of 7/10, and entered the list at 19th position.

Best Chef

Angela Hartnett, another Ramsay protégé, has been awarded the accolade for Chef of the Year for her work at Murano, which she acquired from Gordon Ramsay Holdings in October last year. Paul Foster of Tuddenham Mill in Suffolk was also named Up-and-Coming Chef of the Year.

The Pub of the Year award went to The Duke of Cumberland Arms in Henley, West Sussex; Ramsons in Ramsbottom was named Wine List of the Year; Café Fish on the Isle of Mull was named Fish Restaurant of the Year; Kitchen in Sheffield was given the Best Value for Money award and Vineyard Café in Devon was named Alfresco Restaurant of the Year.

“The Good Food Guide 2012 showcases what has been a fascinating year for dining in the UK. The dining scene across the country is vibrant, with some supremely talented chefs serving innovative food which is winning our readers’ hearts – there is much to be excited about,” said Carter.

Top ten

Simon Rogan’s Cumbrian restaurant L’Enclume climbed two positions to sit in second place​, toppling Gordon Ramsay, Royal Hospital Road down to fourth place. Restaurant Sat Bains in Nottingham climbed three places to take third position.

Restaurant Nathan Outlaw retained its position in fifth place, while Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons in Oxfordshire, and London restaurants Marcus Wareing at the Berkeley, Hibiscus and The Square completed the final line-up in the top ten.

Carter added: “Personally I am extremely excited by the surge this collective of chefs is showing in our top 10 rankings – whilst it’s impossible to pigeonhole them, each is devising quality dishes fusing classical skills and modern methods – it’s the vividness of the imagination they all display which is truly thrilling.”

However, last year’s ninth best restaurant Pied a Terre has fallen off the list completely, as has Restaurant Tom Aikens (No.16), L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon (No.21), La Becasse (No.48), Chez Bruce (No.51), Northcote(No. 52), Reads (No.53), The Cellar (No.54), Arbutus (No.55), Zafferano (No.56), The Peat Inn (No.57), The Capital (No.58), Seven Park Place(No.59) and Alimentum (No.60).

New entries taking their places include John Campbell at Coworth Park in Berkshire (No.23), and Royal Oak in Berkshire (No.49).

The Good Food Guide’s Top 50 Restaurants in the UK (and their cooking scores) are:

1. The Fat Duck, Berkshire (10)
2. L'Enclume, Cumbria (9)
3. Restaurant Sat Bains, Nottinghamshire (9)
4. Gordon Ramsay, Royal Hospital Road, London (9)
5. Restaurant Nathan Outlaw, Cornwall (8)
6. Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons, Oxfordshire (8)
7. Marcus Wareing at the Berkeley, London (8)
8. Pollen Street Social, London (8)
9. Hibiscus, London (8)
10. The Square, London (8)
11. Le Champignon Sauvage, Gloucestershire (8)
12. Adam Simmonds at Danesfield House, Buckinghamshire (8)
13. Whately Manor, The Dining Room, Wiltshire (8)
14. Le Gavroche, London (8)
15. Alain Ducasse at the Dorchester, London (8)
16. Restaurant Martin Wishart, Edinburgh (8)
17. The Ledbury, London (8)
18. The Waterside Inn, Berkshire (7)
19. Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, London (7)
20. Robert Thompson at the Hambrough, Isle of Wight (7)
21.​Midsummer House, Cambridgeshire (7)
22. Murano, London (7)
23. John Campbell at Cowarth Park, Berkshire (7)
24. Fraiche, Merseyside (7)
25. Gidleigh Park, Devon (7)
26. Bohemia, Jersey (7)
27. Fischer’s Baslow Hall, Derbyshire (7)
28. The Crown at Whitebrook, Gwent (7)
29. The Pass, West Sussex (7)
30. Michael Wignall, the Latymer at Pennyhill Park Hotel, Surrey (7)
31. Hambleton Hall, Rutland (7)
32. The Old Vicarage, Derbyshire (7)
33. Andrew Fairlie at Gleneagles, Tayside (7)
34. Harry’s Place, Lincolnshire (7)
35. The Kitchin, Edinburgh (6)
36. Tyddyn Llan, Denbighshire (6)
37. Artichoke, Buckinghamshire (6)
38. Purnell’s, West Midlands (6)
39. Mr Underhill’s, Shropshire (6)
40. The Hand & Flowers, Buckinghamshire (6)
41. Anthony’s Restaurant, West Yorkshire (6)
42. The Greenhouse, London (6)
43. Simon Radley at the Chester Grosvenor, Cheshire (6)
44. The Sportsman, Kent (6)
45. The Creel, Orkney (6)
46. ramsons, Greater Manchester (6)
47. The Yorke Arms, Ramsgill, North Yorkshire (6)
48. Club Gascon, London (6)
49. Royal Oak, Paley Street, Berkshire (6)
50. Galvin La Chapelle, London (6)

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