Michelin Guide 2021: a look at every new Michelin-starred restaurant

Michelin Guide 2021: a look at every new Michelin-starred restaurant

by Great British Chefs 26 January 2021

Get to know a little bit about all the new restaurants featured in the 2021 edition of the Michelin Guide Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

Great British Chefs is a team of passionate food lovers dedicated to bringing you the latest food stories, news and reviews.

Great British Chefs is a team of passionate food lovers dedicated to bringing you the latest food stories, news and reviews as well as access to some of Britain’s greatest chefs. Our posts cover everything we are excited about from the latest openings and hottest food trends to brilliant new producers and exclusive chef interviews.

Two new three-star restaurants; three new two-star restaurants and eighteen new one-star restaurants – after the worst year for hospitality on record, the 2021 Michelin Guide announcement brought a little bit of joy to the chefs and restaurants at the very top of their game. While it’ll be a while before we get to actually eat in any of them, the announcement certainly had us all planning our next blowout culinary odysseys as soon as lockdown lifts and we’re able to dine out once again.

London – as always – received the majority of the new stars, with Core by Clare Smyth and Hélène Darroze at The Connaught moving up from two stars to three (the highest award Michelin gives out). The capital’s A Wong, Da Terra and Restaurant Story each gained a second star, while newcomers Behind, Benares, Casa Fofo, Cornerstone, Davies and Brook, Muse and Sola appeared in the Guide as new entries.

Elsewhere in England, neighbourhood restaurant Pea Porridge in Bury St Edmunds gained a much deserved star, while country house hotels Grantley Hall and Pennyhill Park gained Michelin star status for their own restaurants. It was fantastic to see the North East gain another star in the Scandi-influenced Hjem, while the South West saw Osip, Outlaw’s New Road and Thomas Carr 1873 gain stars.

There was plenty to celebrate outside of England, too – Glasgow’s Cail Bruich received a star, as did Ireland’s Dede in County Cork. Get to know a little bit more about each new restaurant below.

New three-star restaurants

Core by Clare Smyth, London

Hotly tipped to reach three-star status since she left Restaurant Gordon Ramsay (where she also held three stars) and opened her own restaurant Core, Clare has reached the pinnacle of the fine dining world in just over three years. The menus are deceptively simple in describing the dishes, but the intensely technical processes and methods that go into every single element on the plate turn the already world-class ingredients into something far greater. This is modern British food at its very finest, with an onus on seasonal produce above all else.

Hélène Darroze at The Connaught, London

Hélène is no stranger to the world of Michelin, holding stars in her native France for years before she opened her first British restaurant in The Connaught hotel. The trappings of French fine dining are evident, but there are plenty of international influences in the dishes too, inspired by Hélène’s travels around the world. Luxury is at the forefront – caviar, lobster, Wagyu beef and truffle can be found peppered throughout the menu – and the presentation makes every dish a true work of art.

New two-star restaurants

A Wong, London

Andrew Wong is the first chef to win two Michelin stars for a Chinese restaurant outside of Asia, and his menus are as educational as they are delicious. Dishes span the vast, varied regional cuisines of the country, playing on historical, anthropological and social elements of Chinese culture to bring something entirely new to the UK food scene. Lunchtime diners are treated to a selection of seriously good dim sum, while evening guests have a larger selection of intricate dishes to choose from that celebrate the 3,000-year-old cuisine of China.

Restaurant Story, London

Tom Sellers is an incredibly hardworking chef, and his years of dedication at Restaurant Story have finally rewarded him with a second Michelin star. The modern British tasting menu itself tells stories from the chef’s life or about the ingredients on the plate, and there’s a whimsical playfulness that goes with each incredibly accomplished dish. Famous for its beef fat candle, which gently renders into a pool of deliciousness, ready to be mopped up with bread, there’s plenty more to be enchanted by.

Da Terra, London

Da Terra only opened at the beginning of 2019, so to win two Michelin stars just two years later is testament to what a special restaurant it is. Overseen by chef duo Rafael Cagali and Paulo Airaudo, the menu is an interesting mix of South American and Italian flavours, reflecting each chef’s background. Both chefs met while working at The Fat Duck, and some of the theatre and magic has influenced their cooking style, but a meal at Da Terra is clearly original and like nothing else in London.

New one-star restaurants

Behind, London

With only eighteen seats, Behind is more like a chef’s table than a restaurant – but this gives chef Andy Benyon the chance to focus his full attention on creating a knockout fish-focused tasting menu for every service. It’s not all fish and shellfish, but that’s clearly what the team loves to cook above all else, sourcing the finest quality produce and preparing it with serious skill.

Benares, London

Benares is no stranger to Michelin stars, having held one for several years when it was run by previous chef Atul Kochhar. Now overseen by Sameer Taneja, its return to the Guide is long overdue. Serving fine Indian cuisine with a British twist, there’s plenty to choose from whether you’re after traditional, familiar dishes done to the highest standard, or something more inventive.

Cail Bruich, Glasgow

Chef Lorna Mcnee has been engrossed in the top tier of Scottish hospitality since a young age, working at the celebrated Gleneagles restaurant under the late great Andrew Fairlie. When she left to open Cail Bruich in Glasgow, she continued to prove that Scottish produce is the best in the world, taking the country’s ingredients and turning them into beautiful, refined dishes that represent the seasons. There’s plenty of classical technique behind each plate, but it’s how Lorna takes this and combines it with a modern twist that makes a meal here so exciting.

Casa Fofo, London

Casa Fofo is a neighbourhood restaurant in Hackney, with a more relaxed, casual atmosphere than you might expect with a Michelin star hanging outside the front door. The food, however, is a fantastic example of what makes London’s food scene so good. Taking seasonal ingredients and distilling them through an international lens results in an exciting and surprisingly affordable meal. Dishes like the umeboshi froyo prove that there’s plenty of fun to be had in the menu too.

Cornerstone, London

Tom Brown’s debut restaurant has been tipped for a Michelin star since the day it opened, and it’s now the proud owner of one. The casual atmosphere and focus on sharing dishes means it attracts a wide demographic, and the seasonal dishes showcase the very best fish and seafood from around Britain.

Davies and Brook, London

The restaurant at Claridges has seen the likes of Simon Rogan and Gordon Ramsay take up tenancy in the past, so when Daniel Humm (of Eleven Madison Park fame) arrived to open Davies and Brook it was all but guaranteed that it would win a star. It’s thoroughly well deserved, too – dishes are eclectic and manage to combine luxe twists on street food with high-end fine dining fare.

Dede, County Cork, Ireland

Chef Ahmet Dede was previously at restaurants Mews (now closed) and Greenhouse – two of Ireland’s Michelin-starred behemoths. At Dede, he is allowing his own style to shine through, taking the country’s pristine produce and serving it up as part of a contemporary Turkish menu. Think mezze, charcoal-blistered meats and inventive takes on Anatolian cuisine.

Hide and Fox, Hythe, Kent

Fronted by chef Allister Barsby and sommelier/restaurant manager Alice Bussi, who have plenty of experience in top restaurants, Hide and Fox is a classic example of modern British cuisine done incredibly well. Seasonal ingredients are front and centre, with no need for unnecessary frills and garnishes – the confidence and skill of the kitchen is clear in every plate.

Hjem, Hexham, Northumberland

A taste of Scandinavian fine dining in beautiful Northumberland, Hjem is a Nordic culinary gem. Tucked away in a pub with stunning landscapes as a backdrop, chef Alex Nietosvuori calls on his years of experience at top Scandinavian kitchens to bring the minimalist, ingredient-led approach to cooking – with incredible results.

Muse, London

Tom Aikens is a Michelin-starred juggernaut, earning two at his eponymous restaurant back in the day, so his return to the world of fine dining was met with delight when he opened his small restaurant Muse at the beginning of 2020. An homage to his life and experiences both personal and professional, the menu is the culmination of his years working at the very top.

Osip, Bruton, Somerset

Merlin Labron-Johnson previously won a star at restaurant Portland, but left London to open his small farm-to-table restaurant Osip in Bruton, Somerset. Using local ingredients to create regularly changing menus that represent the surrounding area, it’s a delightfully rustic setup that means no two meals there are ever the same.

Outlaw’s New Road, Port Isaac, Cornwall

Nathan Outlaw closed his lauded two-star eponymous restaurant in 2020, reopening it as a more casual, accessible place that reflected how his cooking style has evolved in recent years. Because it was a new concept it lost both its stars, but Michelin were impressed enough with what the country’s best fish and seafood chef continues to serve that they gave him a star straight away. Expect the very best quality ingredients in the world cooked simply – after all, when the produce is this fresh, you don’t want to mess about with it too much.

Pea Porridge, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk

An independent neighbourhood restaurant in the historic market town of Bury St Edmunds, Pea Porridge is an incredibly welcoming, charming place owned by head chef Justin Sharp and his wife Jurga, who runs front of house. Serving simple, seasonal dishes with a focus on nose-to-tail cookery, it also has a fantastic wine list.

Roots, York

Tommy Banks’ second restaurant in the heart of York was an instant hit, serving the same incredible ingredients from his family farm. Roots has a sharing-focused menu celebrating three distinct seasons linked to farming, and dishes change as the year progresses. Ferments and pickles provide plenty of points of interest, and there are heaps of interesting techniques and flavour combinations on show.

Shaun Rankin at Grantley Hall, Ripon, Yorkshire

Grantley Hall marks a return for acclaimed chef Shaun Rankin to his native Yorkshire, after spending over a decade on Jersey. Working with nearby suppliers, farms and artisans means the kitchen team has the best of the best at its disposal, turning the produce into beautiful plates of food. Shaun’s years of experience at the top of Michelin-starred kitchens is evident throughout.

Sola, London

The idea of Californian cuisine is little-known in the UK, but Victor Garvey’s theatrical, internationally inspired menus are quickly proving that the state has a place among more established culinary styles. You’ll find flourishes of Japanese, French and Spanish cooking amongst the dishes on offer, all made with some fantastic ingredients.

The Latymer, Bagshot, Surrey

Pennyhill Park’s restaurant has been a mainstay in the Michelin Guide for years, returning almost every time a new chef takes up residence in the kitchen. This year Steve Smith is the chef responsible for winning the restaurant a star, ensuring the food matches the luxurious surroundings. Luxurious ingredients, incredible skill and beautiful presentation are on show in equal measure.

Thomas Carr 1873, Ilfracombe, Devon

The evening the Michelin Guide results were announced was a bit of a rollercoaster for chef Thomas Carr – having closed his Michelin-starred restaurant in 2020 to open Thomas Carr 1873 in a new location, he automatically lost his star – and there was no mention of his new place during the event. However, his disappointment soon turned to elation when the Guide itself confirmed he had won a star for his latest venture. With a focus on fish caught in the nearby harbour (along with equally good meat and vegetable options), the chef’s time working with the likes of Nathan Outlaw and Michael Caines has given him the perfect foundations to showcase his own cooking style.