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Predictions for January 2009


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but Aiden Byrne just announced he is leaving in January to run a pub/hotel/restaurant in Cheshire.

Hurrah!

The Church Green at Lymm is only a few minutes away and is already reasonably "gastro".

John Hartley

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  • 2 months later...

Predictions - don't really see anything changing much

- Wareing - retains two

- Hibiscus - remains on one (v average meal there recently - fine but no fireworks)

- Aikens - stays on one

- Foliage - maybe two

- L'Autre Pied - gets one

- Texture - gets one

- Sketch - gets second

Edited by tony h (log)
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My thoughts:

- Wishart gets a second

- Hibiscus remains a one - my experience sounds like Tony's

- Foliage gets a second

- LCS drops one

- Bath Priory loses its star as Horridge is going and Caines takes over in February

- The Walnut Tree in Abergavveny gets one recognising Shaun Hill

- Bell's Diner in Bristol gets a one star rising recognising Chris Wicks solid cooking

- The Wheatsheaf in Combe Hay fails to rise (is was a rising one star in '08)

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Nice to see some action on this post. Glad people are still interested in a little gossip :P

Interesting about Hibiscus - these are the first two unfavourable reviews I have heard myself.

Complete agreement that Wareing stays on two.

Based on my pretty excellent meal there, not too far back, would agree with Sketch's bump.

Edited by Food Snob (log)

Food Snob

foodsnob@hotmail.co.uk

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- LCS drops one

NNNNOOOO!!!! I had two quite sublime meals this year. guess you went on a very very rare off night

btw - Food snob - like your site but it shows that you don't seem to have made over to LCS yet which sounds like quite a serious omission. really need to address that one soon

Edited by tony h (log)
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- LCS drops one

NNNNOOOO!!!! I had two quite sublime meals this year. guess you went on a very very rare off night

btw - Food snob - like your site but it shows that you don't seem to have made over to LCS yet which sounds like quite a serious omission. really need to address that one soon

I worry based on the report i believe Phil gave (it may have been someone else) earlier last year. I had a stunning meal in february but I don't know if theres enough in the 2 star range except for the atmosphere/feel. I need to go again really, see if anythings changed since the last visit, if the new book is on the way then perhaps things are still 2 star standard. I don't mean to say that anything bad is coming out of the kitchen, if bad food is being made then a restaurant doesnt deserve any stars, no matter what they aspire to. I really hope they don't drop one.

Edit: Didn't really get across what i meant the first time.

Edited by CalumC (log)
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- LCS drops one

NNNNOOOO!!!! I had two quite sublime meals this year. guess you went on a very very rare off night

btw - Food snob - like your site but it shows that you don't seem to have made over to LCS yet which sounds like quite a serious omission. really need to address that one soon

I do feel I am so very out of step with most people regarding LCS that I need to revisit. I have a nagging concern that the food was obscured by the dire service, poor ambiance in the room (brighter lighting than a Cantonese restaurant), and the frosty welcome from Helen. Maybe FOH really was having an off night, given how many people rave about Helen's hospitality.

I am going to open negotiations with the CFO/Chauffeur for a return trip

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I'm going to pool some of the responses above that chime with my own thoughts and then quote that esteemed reality show soul-purveyor Lemar by saying "If there's any justice in the world then":

**Sketch goes up to two.

*The Walnut Tree gets one.

*So does Fraiche.

*/*Northcote an outsider for a second.

-And yes, Juniper to drop it's star (I worry when I find myself in such agreement with RDB...).

Most of my fine-dining experiences this year have felt correctly starred (which suprised me) so I think it's largely going to be as you were with no great shocks.

That said a trimming of GRH would be timely (and, being cynical, would generate huge PR).

Cheers

Thom

Edited by thom (log)

It's all true... I admit to being the MD of Holden Media, organisers of the Northern Restaurant and Bar exhibition, the Northern Hospitality Awards and other Northern based events too numerous to mention.

I don't post here as frequently as I once did, but to hear me regularly rambling on about bollocks - much of it food and restaurant-related - in a bite-size fashion then add me on twitter as "thomhetheringto".

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Most of my fine-dining experiences this year have felt correctly starred (which suprised me) so I think it's largely going to be as you were with no great shocks.

I have had similar experiences , or they have been place like anthony's or fraiche that to my mind are 1* all day long but just don't tick the michelin box, (and i can see the michelin POV on some of this eg young businesses/young chefs/lack of track record etc) but it's nothing to do with their stated ethos of 'it's only what's on the plate that counts'

Althought they chuck a curve ball in every now again with (the very much deserved) star at the sportsman or giving heston 3* most places, to the seasoned diner, look like 1 , 2 or 3 star restaurants and they stick to that formula because that's what diners who use the guide expect, stick anthony's or fraiche in a country house hotel in surrey and i'm sure they'd get a star.

Anyway going to anthony's tonight, and from my recent visit to fraiche, although to my mind a solid 1* they didn't appear to be holding their breath for one.

that said, generally the restaurants they do rate are worthy of it, it's more the omissions that are sometimes baffling but that's all part of the mystique.

fwiw i think nathan is the only uplift to 2* likely and would be suprised if gordon lost a star or wareing picked up one, murano will probably get one though.

juniper a cert to lose it, and what's his other place in cornwall - that too probably.

you don't win friends with salad

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If it's in time then Corrigan's a possibility for a * (if they're going to play fair on the Arbutus/Wild Honey stakes) and on the same note Galvin Bistrot and L'autre Pied should also get one (but they won't). Darroze to get ** if my experience is consistent and Foliage could bump up to **. Launceston place should also get * as should one-0-one. Outsiders/unknowns? Clos Maggiore with it's new (and **) chef a posibility for *.

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that said, generally the restaurants they do rate are worthy of it, it's more the omissions that are sometimes baffling but that's all part of the mystique.

Yes, I was going to make that exact same point, eloquently put.

Anthony's is a fair shout too. I was there just before Christmas and had a very good meal indeed (not to mention a damn fine Black Forest Martini in the Piazza afterwards!) but if Michelin haven't recognised it thus far then why now?

Cheers

Thom

It's all true... I admit to being the MD of Holden Media, organisers of the Northern Restaurant and Bar exhibition, the Northern Hospitality Awards and other Northern based events too numerous to mention.

I don't post here as frequently as I once did, but to hear me regularly rambling on about bollocks - much of it food and restaurant-related - in a bite-size fashion then add me on twitter as "thomhetheringto".

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well as i say it's nothing to do with what's on the plate, i think most would agree they've had that pretty much boxed off from day one, but what experienced michelin hands tell me is they are a conservative, risk averse bunch, so a young chef turns up in leeds , no uk track record (despite massive * experience in spain) , own restaurant, molecular gastronomy, (for want of a better word) not classic michelin french food- well you could take the view that they wouldn't see the year out and it would be an embarrassment to michelin if they awarded a star and it fails?

Subsequent years go by and now they think he has too many restaurants , spreading too thinly etc. and piazza probably won't help, so i don't think they are more likely to get one this year but the longer they stick at it the more likely it becomes, i remember it took l'enclume longer than eveyone thought to get theirs too, wheras an old michelin hand like simon gueller can re-appear at the box tree in a michelin codified environment with all the bells and whistles and because he had a star before he gets another, because if they gave one before and it's the same food why shouldn't it get one again?

As an aside the guellers said when they got theirs unexpectedly and anthony's didn't when everyone thought they would, it actually casued them a bit of a backlash, it was a bit harsh as i was at the box tree the night before the results and they had no idea they were getting one, they thought they'd be luckily to have caught the deadline for a few knives and forks, as i said michelin move in mysterious ways!

you don't win friends with salad

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