It’s an internationally recognised hallmark of the highest quality, enjoyed by those who appreciate the finer things in life. Since the Michelin guide started in 1926 (yes, by that tyre company), it has awarded its coveted stars to only the finest establishments. The three star accolade is reserved for the most elite club.
As you would expect from a Michelin star restaurant, each has its own comprehensive drinks menu and leading barmen to dazzle guests. Here’s just a few of the must-visit bars attached to Michelin star restaurants around the UK.
Alain Ducasse at the Dorchester, London
There are only five restaurants in the UK awarded three Michelin stars, Ducasse is one of them. Known for its imaginative French cuisine and extensive drinks menu, its Wine Director, Gérard Margeon has curated a 1000-bin wine list. True to its authenticity, the vast majority (86%) originates from France, including more than 80 different selections of champagne. Its pièce de resistance though, has to be its tasting menu, offering seven courses paired with seven glasses of wine for £95. These include a 2007 Champagne Grande Annèe Bollinger, and 1998 Saint-Estèphe Château Calon Ségur. Magnifique, as the French say!
The Hind’s Head, Bray
If you can’t afford the Fat Duck, why not try out Heston Blumenthal’s equally brilliant gastro-pub next door. Hidden in the sleepy village of Bray, this rustic pub is great for a swift half, or for a relaxing, well-presented meal. This is the perfect spot to enjoy a local ‘Berkshire Diamond Cider’, with one of its famous Scotch eggs on the side! The cocktail list combines great British flavours with drinks such as ‘The Royal Rhubarb’ and ‘Gold Rush’ leaving you wanting more. There’s so much to its drinks menu, from a wide selection of tequilas and Scotch whiskies , as well as gin and bottled beer, making it a hidden gem worth finding.
Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons, Oxfordshire
Nestled in an Oxfordshire village, Raymond Blanc’s Belmond is somewhat reminiscent of the French countryside. A hotel and restaurant all-in-one, with its own wine cellar for tastings with the sommelier, this is best visited as a destination to enjoy in its entirety. At the hotel bar, bartenders serve up classic cocktails from its trusted menu, although still in keeping with the French theme, a glass of Laurent Perrier Rosé provides the perfect tipple!
L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon, London
The food here is described in the Michelin guide as “assured and accomplished cooking”, and this intimate venue tucked away in Covent Garden has an equally impressive drinks list to wow. Its wine cellar holds an extensive collection of world wines, while upstairs barman Jordan Parolini serves up stunning cocktails from the constantly evolving drinks menu. Sometimes though, simplicity is best, with a Sipsmith Dry Gin and tonic enjoyed on the cosy terrace upstairs.
Soho is known for its buzzing nightlife, eclectic food scene and bars, but this single star Michelin restaurant is one of the few places that brings it all together under one roof. A place where dim sum and cocktails are always on the menu, it’s hard not to be seduced by the moody lighting, exciting array of desserts and bartending skills. Its Aquarium bar is a destination in itself, with killer cocktails giving a gentle nod to its Asian roots. Try the NV Shirakabegura Mio Sparkling Sake or a fragrant ‘Tokyo Cooler’ for your first course!
The Pipe and Glass Inn, East Yorkshire
This twee country gastropub dates back to the 15th century and is home to East Yorkshire’s only Michelin star. Take a seat at the bar and enjoy a local ‘Yorkshire Nectar’ ale, a light and golden brew at just 4%, or try out one of their many house wines from the cellar and their award-winning wine menu. The wines are reasonably priced (many under £30) and categorised by dishes, for the perfect pairing.
Redefining Indian cuisine, Bollywood star Asha Bhosle has achieved great success with her group of groundbreaking restaurants. With high ceilings and hanging lights, it lends itself perfectly to a pre-dinner drink or two. Curated by a team of “international mixologists” the drinks menu is exotic and inspiring, from Darjeeling teas to clove and cardamom cocktails, and a number of alcohol-free concoctions, such as the popular ‘Vanilla Berry Mocktail’.