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Midlands Restaurants ~ Harden’s Guide

The renowned ‘Harden’s Brother’s’ who edit the annual ‘Gastro-Emmies’ have this week announced that the regions restaurants fair well, but not as well as they could!

Top Gourmands are ‘home-grown’ Chris and Judy Bradley, proprietors of the much loved Mr Underhills of Ludlow. This unassuming team, have presided over the river-side restaurant the last 30 years. Originally named after their cat,  long since departed, has just 32 covers, small but perfectly formed.

He added that country restaurants often fared well in the guide, because reviewers ranked their overall experience, including the setting and ambience, which sometimes were lacking at the best London venues, but nonetheless, “the trouncing of the capital by the shires is telling us something real.”

The Bradley’s, who have recently been rumoured to be selling up, as recently as last years Ludlow Food Festival, have vowed to stay on for “at least another two years”.

Across the Midlands other restaurants fared well, and others not so. Turners restaurant in Birmingham has been named as runner up in the best up-and-coming restaurant in the country in a new guide published today.

Runners up for best all-round restaurant were: The Waterside Inn in Bray, Gidleigh Park in Chagford, Devon; Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons in Great Milton, Oxfordshire; Berkshire; and Northcote in Langho, Lancashire.

For Birmingham, Harden’s waxes lyrical and focuses on  city’s top five restaurants, but is perplexed at the “bizarre” lack of a credible supporting cast of top quality kitchens.

Harden also praised Birmingham’s three Michelin-starred establishments – Simpsons, Purnell’s and Turners – and also highlighted the cooking at Edmunds and Pascal’s.

Bank was recently dismissed as a rather “’90s style brasserie,” Hotel du Vin’s “phenomenal wine completely outpaces the food” Chez Jules is “just about OK,” and San Carlos’s service is “unhelpful”. Only two restaurants specialising in Indian cooking – (read our exclusive review) Lasan and Maharaja – are listed while the Balti Triangle is snubbed.

Harden’s top ten restaurants in UK, 2010

1. Mr Underhill’s, Shropshire

2. Gidleigh Park, Devon

3. Waterside Inn, Berkshire

4. Marcus Wareing at the Berkeley, London

5. Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons, Oxfordshire

6. Northcote, Lancashire

7. Lucknam Park, Wiltshire

8. French Horn, Berkshire

9. Yorke Arms, Ramsgillin-Nidderdale, North Yorkshire

10. Hambleton Hall, Rutland

Read More about the Harden’s Guide HERE

Save 20% off at some of the Midlands Finest Restaurants HERE

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