New restaurants in The Good Food Guide 2019
Published 04 September 2018

Ballintaggart Farm Grandtully, Perthshire

With just days before the release of the 2019 Good Food Guide, we give you a sneak preview of some of this year’s best new entries


The Royal Oak, Whatcote, Warwickshire
The team behind the critically acclaimed Chef’s Dozen in Chipping Campden has a new home on the edge of the Cotswolds. In the white-walled dining room, expect dishes that are far from typical pub grub: quail stuffed with sweetbreads, perhaps, with charred broccoli and a brown butter and hazelnut dressing, followed by an autumnal dessert of preserved pear poached in hogweed syrup, served with cobnuts. Game is shot locally, and the supplier list reads like a roll call of the best British producers. And before you go thinking that another boozer has gone all la-di-da, a short menu of bar snacks, plus monthly quiz nights, place The Royal Oak at the heart of the village community once more.


Röski, Liverpool
TV fame doesn’t always translate into success in the fickle world of fine dining, but this solo venture from MasterChef: The Professionals winner Anton Piotrowski certainly bucks the trend. The compact, elegant restaurant in Liverpool’s Georgian quarter aims to put the city firmly on the culinary map with its short (£65) and full (£75) tasting menus, which combine inventive flavours with technical wizardry. Refreshingly, Röski is not asking for hushed voices or adulation: the mood is fun and the dishes are playful. Although the restaurant caters for both meat-eaters and vegetarians, the menu for the latter is no mere afterthought here. Take the miniature crumpet topped with a quail’s egg, tomato and dollop of home-made brown sauce, for example, or the whimsical play on a chip butty made with potato crisps, black bomber cheddar and shavings of black truffle. Anton wants diners to walk out wearing smiles, and after tasting his signature dessert ‘Röski’s gone carrots’, a made-for-TV (literally) re-working of a carrot cake (above), you surely will.


Ballintaggart Farm Grandtully, Perthshire
Before moving to this Tay Valley smallholding, owners Chris and Rachel Rowley ran Edinburgh’s first – and highly popular – supper club. Its laid-back vibe has transferred seamlessly to this tasteful restaurant with rooms. On warm evenings, hens cluck on the sunny terrace as you feast on locally produced venison salami, gravadlax with samphire and goats’ cheese crostini. In the beamed dining room, move on to the likes of Scrabster cod with rosemary gnocchi, followed by pumpkin and ginger tart. Chris did stints with Rick Stein and Nathan Outlaw while training, so you’re in good hands.


Coal Rooms London SE15
Given its home in the former ticket office of Peckham Rye station, south London, above which steam trains once trundled, it is apt that this bright space is centred around a charcoal-fired robata grill/oven. Little on the menu of small plates and sharing dishes escapes its attentions, from smoked goat shoulder (£17) to coal-roasted cauliflower (£6). Belted Galloway T-bone steaks (below) are sold by weight; pair with Peckham Fatboy potatoes – a hefty mix of roast spuds, raclette cheese, onions and mayo. On Sundays, book in for roasts with all the trimmings.


The Club House, West Bexington, Dorset
A pebble’s throw from Chesil Beach, this low-slung, whitewashed building houses a seafood-focused restaurant from the team behind the ever-popular Hive Beach Café just down the coast. Vintage lifebelts and 1930s light fittings nod to The Club House’s past at the centre of a pre-war holiday village complete with Olympic-sized pool (sadly now long gone). The menu is dotted with local ingredients; brown crab macaroni cheese comes with organic salad from Tamarisk Farm, through whose entrance you access The Club House. Oysters might hail from Brownsea Island, and ice creams and cheeses travel only from neighbouring Somerset. Even drinks maintain the regional theme: the wine list includes the made-for-seafood Shoreline from Lyme Bay Winery, and the Dorset-distilled Black Cow vodka, which forms the basis of the Barnes Wallis, one of the all-day cocktails.


Woolf & Social, Norwich
Spawned from a popular street-food stall, this small-plates operation
is the poster child for the Instagram generation of restaurants. Pre-loved furniture, a chalkboard wine list and a typewritten menu provide the backdrop for a straightforward collection of up-to-the-minute seasonal dishes. Shallow enamel bowls are piled high with the likes of ham hock and pickled vegetables, crisp-skinned sea trout with baby gem and samphire, or the justly popular buttermilk-fried chicken with sriracha mayo. And even better, every dish is £10 or under.


Moorcock Inn, Norland Moor, West Yorkshire
Don’t be put off by the climb to this stone pub above Sowerby Bridge. Not only will you be rewarded with views over the valley, but you’ll also get to sample some of the most exciting food in the county, if not the country. There’s just one menu (£35) – a multi-course affair that might kick off with whole herring skeleton, a crisp, delicate flavour bomb that sums up the ethos: what’s not grown on site or produced locally is probably something saved from becoming kitchen scraps. Watch the chefs tending the open grill, from which might issue dry-aged local mutton, paired with a relish of mushrooms and pickled lamb heart. This Good Life-style self-sufficiency even extends to house-made butter, and crockery fashioned from spent ashes.


Pasta Ripiena, Bristol
In a city already enjoying its moment in the foodie spotlight, this tiny buzzing pasta joint still stands out. Book ahead to nab a place at one of a handful of Formica-topped tables from which you can peer over the pass into the small kitchen beyond. It’s here that chef Joe Harvey and his band of brothers spend their mornings rolling, stuffing (hence ‘ripiena’) and cutting silky, egg-rich pasta for an appreciative crowd. The daily-changing menu focuses on classy ingredients; it might feature tortellini of ricotta and Amalfi lemon with fresh peas and mint butter, or scarpinocc (‘shoes’) of dry-aged beef, coppa ham, chard and parmesan in a Pedro Ximénez reduction. There’s a great-value lunchtime menu (£16 for three courses) available too.

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