The List

National Restaurant Awards 2016: The Sportsman claims number one spot

The Sportsman in Kent has been named the UK’s best restaurant in the 2016 National Restaurant Awards.

The Michelin-starred pub restaurant in Seasalter, swapped places with last year’s best restaurant – Barrafina Adelaide Street – to take up the number one spot at Restaurant magazine’s awards, held at The Hurlingham Club in London on 27 June.

Restaurant editor Stefan Chomka said: “Stephen Harris once described The Sportsman as a ‘grotty boozer by the sea’. But it’s certainly way more than that. The former history teacher is one of a handful of UK chefs to practice genuine terroir cooking down in the Kent estuary. A magnificent restaurant and a very worthy number one, congratulations to The Sportsman.”

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London restaurants The Ledbury and Hedone took third and fourth places respectively while Restaurant Nathan Outlaw in Port Isaac, Cornwall, was fifth.

Allan Pickett and Andre Blais’s London restaurant Piquet, which opened last year, was awarded Highest New Entry (7th) while Lake Road Kitchen in Ambleside (7th) was named Highest Climber after climbing up 70 places from last year.

Other awards, for Service, Cocktail List of the Year and Wine List of the Year, were given to The Clove Club, Social Eating House and Noble Rot respectively.

Philip Howard, was awarded Chef’s Chef of the Year and Pierre Koffmann was given a Lifetime Achievement Award.

There was also the Best Italian Award, given to London’s The River Cafe and The One to Watch, awarded to Som Saa in London.

Top 100 criteria

Votes from 150 industry experts from across the UK, including chefs, restaurateurs, food writers and critics, determine which restaurants make the top 100 list.

Each voter is given seven votes based on their best restaurant experiences from the last 12 months. Votes are listed in order of preference and must be for restaurants both in their ‘home’ region and outside it.

Once all votes are cast, they are added up by Restaurant magazine to create the list. In the event of a tied number of votes, the preference ‘weighting’ comes into play.

Special awards – Best Wine List, Service, Best Cocktail List and Lifetime Achievement – are voted for separately by the same academy of experts while The One To Watch Award is granted at the discretion of Restaurant magazine.

Top 100 UK Restaurants 2016:

1. The Sportsman, Kent

2. Barrafina Adelaide Street, London

3. The Ledbury, London

4. Hedone, London

5. Restaurant Nathan Outlaw, Port Isaac

6. The Clove Club, London

7. Piquet, London (Highest New Entry)

8. L’Enclume, Cartmel

9. Lyle’s, London

10. The River Café, London

11. The Walnut Tree, Abergavenny

12. Casamia, Bristol

13. The Dairy, London

14. Restaurant Sat Bains, Nottingham

15. Lake Road Kitchen, Ambleside

16. 64 Degrees, Brighton

17. Hoppers, London

18. Le Gavroche, London

19. A Wong, London

20. Frenchie, London

21. Noble Rot, London

22. Restaurant Andrew Fairlie, Auchturader

23. The Waterside Inn, Bray

24. Black Axe Mangal, London

25. The Quality Chop House, London

26. Bells Diner and Bar Rooms, Bristol

27. The Man Behind the Curtain, Leeds

28. Fera, London

29. Duck & Waffle, London

30. 40 Maltby Street, London

31. Hibiscus, London

32. The Elephant, Torquay

33. The Hand and Flowers, Marlow

34. Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, London

35. Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, London

36. Hawksmoor Seven Dials, London

37. Birch, Bristol

38. Northcote, Blackburn

39. Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons

40. The Hardwick, Abergavenny

41. Portland, London

42. The Palomar, London

43. Midsummer House, Cambridge

44. Bao, London

45. Gymkhana, London

46. Pollen Street Social, London

47. The Seahorse, Dartmouth

48. Ellory, London

49. Alyn Williams at The Westbury, London

50. Manchester House, Manchester

51. Paul Ainsworth at Number 6, Padstow

52. Pitt Cue, London

53. Brawn, London

54. Otto’s, London

55. Smoking Goat, London

56. Simpsons, Birmingham

57. The Manor, London

58. Oldroyd, London

59. The Coach, Marlow

60. Ondine, Edinburgh

61. The Ninth, London

62. Bocca Di Lupo, London

63. Kitchen Table, London

64. Social Eating House, London

65. Fraiche, Oxton

66. Restaurant Story, London

67. Marcus, London

68. The Fat Duck, Bray

69. The Wolseley, London

70. Wright’s Food Emporium, Llanarthney

71. Chez Bruce, London

72. Lurra, London

73. Primeur, London

74. Sticky Walnut, Chester

75. The Kitchin, Edinburgh

76. Tyddyn Llan, Corwen

77. Colony Grill Room, London

78. Castle Terrace, Edinburgh

79. The French, Manchester

80. Darsham Nurseries, Darsham

81. El Gato Negro, Manchester

82. Snaps and Rye, London

83. Deanes EIPIC Restaurant, Belfast

84. The Wild Rabbit, Kingham

85. Ynyshir Hall, Machynlleth

86. Theo Randall at The InterContinental, London

87. Bentleys Oyster Bar & Grill, London

88. The Parkers Arms, Newton in Bowland

89. The Chilli Pickle, Brighton

90. The Pipe and Glass Inn, Beverley

91. Carters of Moseley, Moseley

92. The Flitch of Bacon, Dunmow

93. Silo, Brighton

94. MeatLiquor Marylebone, London

95. Sartoria, London

96. Wilks Restaurant, Bristol

97. Berners Tavern, London

98. Café Murano St James, London

99. House of Tides, Newcastle

100. Driftwood Hotel

Special Awards:

• Chef’s Chef of the Year – Philip Howard

• Lifetime Achievement Award – Pierre Koffmann

• One to Watch – Som Saa

• Highest New Entry – Piquet

• Highest Climber – Lake Road

• The Service Award – The Clove Club

• Cocktail List of the Year – Social Eating House

• Wine List of the Year – Noble Rot

• Best Italian – The River Café

• Sustainable Restaurant of the Year – Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons

• Best in UK/Gastropub – The Sportsman

• Best in Scotland – Restaurant Andrew Fairlie

• Best in Wales – The Walnut Tree

• Best in Northern Ireland – Deanes EIPIC Restaurant