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Michelin's top restaurants—including Indian names—in the UK and Ireland

The Ledbury in London earned a three star, while two Indian restaurants—Gymkhana in Mayfair and Opheem in Birmingham—received two stars each

(Left) Gol Guppas, Jaljeera, Potato, Sprouting Moong at Gymkhana in Mayfair; Ras malai with milk, cardamom, pistachio at Opheem.
(Left) Gol Guppas, Jaljeera, Potato, Sprouting Moong at Gymkhana in Mayfair; Ras malai with milk, cardamom, pistachio at Opheem. (Photos: @gymkhanalondon and @opheemrestaurant, Instagram)

The upper ends of the British and Irish dining scenes are getting a little starrier. 

The Ledbury in London, where chef-owner Brett Graham grows his own mushrooms in an old linen cupboard, is the UK’s newest three-star restaurant. Graham’s £210 ( 21,833.71) tasting menu features dishes like those cabinet-grown mushrooms with potato and yeast as well as wild sea bass with smoked eel and caviar. The restaurant had closed during the pandemic and there was a question about whether it would survive. A renovated dining room in West London reopened in June 2022. 

Also read | What's a big reason for Bangkok’s thriving dining scene? Female chefs

There was more good news for London in the two-star category: Brooklands, the ambitious new dining room in the Peninsula Hotel that opened in September, jumped directly to two stars. The restaurant is run by UK star chef Claude Bosi, who has already earned two stars at two different restaurants, first at Hibiscus and then at Bibendum inside Michelin’s London headquarters. His newest serves a menu of elegant dishes highlighting British produce—Lake District lamb with mint and pastrami—along with a commanding view of London.

It was one of six new spots to receive two stars; last year there were only three new ones. Other additions included two Indian restaurants: The celebrated Gymkhana in Mayfair and the dynamic Opheem, in Birmingham, both of which had one star.

The list of restaurants with one star also became more diverse. This year, 18 restaurants were recognized with a star, compared to 20 last year; the most notable addition is Chishuru, the West African restaurant from chef Adejoké Bakare. She launched her restaurant in a postage-stamp-sized space in a Brixton food hall in September 2020; last year she moved it to airier, more centrally located digs in Fitzrovia. Her set dinner menu, which goes for £75 ( 7,803.66) might include sinasir, or fermented rice cakes, and glazed goat belly with pepper relish. 

Bakare’s Michelin award is doubly significant because currently, only 6% of chefs at Michelin starred restaurants are women, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. And there were only six Black chefs cooking at kitchens with Michelin stars as of August 2023. 

The number was also boosted by another notable West African restaurant in London, the fine dining spot Akoko, helmed by chef Ayo Adeyemi. Last year, The Bear actor Will Poulter brought international attention to the restaurant in an interview when he called out Michelin’s lack of attention to the elegant tasting menu restaurant. 

The UK stars were announced at a live event at the Midland hotel in Manchester on Monday night. The event marked the 50th anniversary for the Britain and Ireland awards. Although there was speculation that it might be a good night for Manchester, none of its dining spots garnered a new star.

“We made a point of having awards outside of London; we don’t want to be anchored in one city,” said Gwendal Poullennec, international director for Michelin Guides. “For the first time ever, there’s a two-star restaurant in Birmingham. That shows the depth of what’s happening around Britain and Ireland.” There are now five two-star spots around Ireland, including a brand new one, Terre, in Castlemartyr in Cork.

Among the restaurants that dropped off this year’s list is the two-star Le Gavroche, which operated for over 55 years before shutting its doors in January. Chef and owner Michel Roux Jr. cited a better work-life balance as a main reason for closing the family establishment.

There are now nine three-star restaurants in the UK and Ireland, including Hélène Darroze at the Connaught hotel in London, which has had the top award since 2021, and chef Simon Rogan’s L’Enclume, a farm-focused dining room in the Lake District.  

Michelin defines a three-star spot as “superlative cooking of chefs at the peak of their profession.” Two stars are awarded “when the personality and talent of the chef are evident in their expertly crafted dishes.” And one star designates “top quality ingredients, where dishes with distinct flavours are prepared to a consistently high standard.”

Last week, Michelin announced 20 new restaurants that had scored a Bib Gourmand award—the equivalent of the guide’s Cheap Eats. That included the Three Horseshoes pub in Essex, the French bistro Les 2 Garçons in London and Higher Ground in Manchester. 

Non-star awards included one for Roux who was given the Mentor Chef award for 2024. The Young Chef award went to Jake Jones of Forge at Middleton Lodge Estate.

Among the places that Michelin didn’t recognize are some of London’s top wine-focused places including the perennially creative Planque and Cadet, the North London spot that has drawn acclaim since it opened a year and a half ago. 

Below are the winners in the three-star and two-star categories and the new one-star establishments. An (**) indicates a new entry.

Three Stars

Alain Ducasse at the Dorchester, London
Core by Clare Smyth, London
Gordon Ramsay, London
Hélène Darroze at the Connaught, London
**The Ledbury, London
L’Enclume, Cartmel, England
Sketch (the Lecture Room & Library), London
Fat Duck, Bray, England
Waterside Inn, Bray, England

Two Stars

A. Wong, London
Alex Dilling at Hotel Café Royal, London
Andrew Fairlie at Gleneagles, Auchterarder
**Brooklands, London
Claude Bosi at Bibendum, London
Chapter One by Mickael Viljanen, Dublin
The Clove Club, Shoreditch, London
Da Terra, LondonDede, Baltimore, Ireland
Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, London
**Glenturret Lalique, Crieff, Scotland
**Gymkhana, London
Hand and Flowers, Marlow
Ikoyi, St James’s, London
Kitchen Table, London
La Dame de Pic London, London
Le Manoir aux Quat' Saisons, a Belmond Hotel, Great Milton
Liath, Blackrock, Dublin
Midsummer House, Cambridge
Moor Hall, Aughton
**Opheem, Birmingham
Patrick Guilbaud, Dublin, Ireland
Restaurant Sat Bains, Nottingham
**Terre, Castlemartyr, Cork, Ireland
**Trivet, London
Story, London
Ynyshir, Machynlleth, Powys

New One Stars 

**1890 by Gordon Ramsey, London
**Akoko, London
**Aulis, London
**Bishops Buttery, Cashel,  Ireland
**Cedar Tree by Hrishikesh Desai, Brampton, Cumbria
**Chishuru, London
**Crocadon, St Mellion
**Dorian, London
**D’Olier Street, Dublin
**Homestead Cottage, Doolin, Ireland
**Humble Chicken, London
**Humo, London
**Lake Road Kitchen, Ambleside, Cumbria
**Mountain, London
**Myse, Hovingham, York 
**Pavyllon London, London
**Ormer Mayfair, London
**Sushi Kanesaka, London

Also read | The hottest new restaurants in London in 2024


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