Restaurant Brighton's guide to
Best Restaurants Brighton
Our top picks
Tucked away on Ship Street is the very unassuming French bistro, Petit Pois. The restaurant brings together a menu of classic French dishes prepared with sensitive innovation, a lovingly crafted wine list that celebrates the finest winemaking regions of the country and a casual, chic and undeniably French ambience. Petit Pois is a local gem, whose balance of quality, service and fair prices really flies the tricolour for bistro dining,
Moshimo is a giant amongst the best restaurants in Brighton, with a building in the style of a Japanese lantern that is as iconic as the Royal Pavillion itself. Moshimo has a history for making international waves in the seafood industry. The menu excludes endangered fish and places a massive emphasis on sustainability through the Moshimo “Fish Love” campaign. Moshimo also drives awareness on veganism (or flexitarianism) with their quarterly Moshimo Vegan Challenge. How can a sushi restaurant achieve all of this? By being exceptional at what they do is how; Moshimo remains the place to go for sushi in Brighton.
It is unusual for a restaurant annexed onto a hotel to achieve national recognition for excellence, but this is what The Salt Room has done. The conservatory-like restaurant looks out over the West Pier and seafront through a bold black and glass facade. Inside sea botanical infused aperitifs await, and an innovative menu of seasonal, sustainable and locally landed seafood cooked over coals.
Ian Swainson’s Spanish inspired fine dining concept first opened as a pop-up in the Brighton Lanes before relocating as the permanent resident kitchen at the acclaimed Drakes hotel. Swainson’s CV is impressive, studded with Michelin stars and AA Rosettes, while Drakes is widely considered one of the finest boutique hotels in Brighton. Their coming together is a tour de force on the city’s food scene.
Masterchef winner Steven Edwards set up his restaurant in Brighton in 2017. Since opening, his ambition and drive to perfect his craft has shown no signs of slowing and neither do the recognitions. To date etch. has earned 5 in The Good Food Guide, 66th Place in the National Restaurant Awards (2019), three AA Rosettes, a Michelin Plate and first place in the people’s vote for the Best Restaurants Brighton category in the 2019 BRAVOs. The dining experience at etch. is a complete one and one from which we anticipate even greater things to come.
Beginning life as a pop up near Preston Park, Chard took up permanent residence at i-gigi general store in 2018; from the onset, we knew this was one to watch. Attention to detail is what makes Chard shine. The rustic aesthetic, the charming and friendly service and the paired back, the seasonal menu delivers an experience that is harmonious in every aspect. Run by a family team of three, everything at Chard is carried out with a genuine love for what they wish to achieve. So much so that you cannot help feeling a little enamoured yourself.
This bijou French bistro at the top of the North Laine is relaxed and friendly with a daily changing ingredient-led menu, organic low intervention wine and locally sourced ethical produce. The modern cuisine is French-inspired, but more simply refined with ingredients being finessed. Mange Tout is open daily for breakfast, lunch and light bites, and evening meals Thursday to Saturday.
Rathfinny Wine estate has elevated the visitor experience into something quite special and earned itself a Michelin Plate in 2020. Following the COVID-19 pandemic, The Tasting Room has re-modelled itself as the Tasting Room Seafood and Wine Kitchen, with a menu to be enjoyed in the vineyard grounds or terrace.
Like it’s sister restaurant, The Salt Room, The Coal Shed has a firm policy of using sustainably sourced produce. Black Aberdeen Angus steak from the very tip of Northern Scotland provides the standard of fare. The food is cooked using a Josper Grill, considered the industries best grill for sealing in flavour, succulence, and a smokey chargrill note. The Salt Rooms raises the bar for steak restaurants everywhere and arguably sits among the best restaurants in Brighton for its Sunday roast sharing platter too.
Duncan Ray’s Little Fish Market is a tightly run ship. Duncan cooks alone, and the front of the house is an entirely one-person show too. The menu is a set tasting menu that changes with the season and what’s been landed that day. As understated as the operation may be, The Little Fish Market has made significant impressions nationally. Currently, The Little Fish Market is listed in the National Restaurant Awards top 100 (2018 and 2019), has received three AA Rosettes, 5 Good House Keeping and a Michelin Plate and in 2020 was voted Brighton’s best restaurant in the BRAVOs.
Baqueano is a family run Argentinian restaurant, with Adriana heading up the front of house and Jorge running the kitchen. The wife and husband team both hark from Argentina and bring a passionate enthusiasm to their offering. Adriana’s charm and warmth will leave as lasting a good memory as the top quality prime steak and full bodied Malbec. This restaurant has received glowing reviews since opening and deservedly so. You’ll be planning your next visit before you got the bill.
The Curry Leaf Cafe in the bustling Lanes serves South Indian street food of the sort you would find in busy markets and streets. The Curry Leaf Cafe is exactly that, a cafe, but finds its way into our best restaurants Brighton list nonetheless. Casual dining doesn’t have to mean corners are cut. At the Curry Leaf Cafe, you can enjoy excellent authentic cuisine, well paired with a large selection of craft beers at affordable prices. The Curry Leaf has won numerous awards, especially for the attention to providing menus that cater to allergies and restricted diets.
Michelin awarded Restaurant Interlude a star in the 2020 awards, less than a year into the restaurant opening. The ever-changing menu at Restaurant Interlude is inspired by and draws many ingredients from the listed gardens of the Leonardslee Estate, Horsham, in which it is set. Dining begins at 7 pm and takes around three to four hours for the 14 to 19-course menu to be served. The menu at Interlude is an event, an exploration of season and terrain that is all together transportive.
This modern French bistro and natural wine bar (Brighton’s only one!), Plateau, has a relaxed effortlessly stylish feel running through everything from the playlist to the decor and the attitude toward sourcing produce. “Relaxed” and “effortless” here doesn’t mean shoddy, (otherwise, they’d have no place among our pick of best restaurants in Brighton). Plateau specialises in low intervention wines, unfussy cocktails and a daily changing menu that picks out the inherently delicious flavours of fresh, organic, ingredients and finesses them. Plateau won Best Cocktail in the 2019 BRAVOs.
Kujira was new to the Brighton food scene in late 2018 but took the city by such storm that by early 2019 they were awarded best restaurant in Brighton for International Cuisine in the BRAVOs. Kujira is a Robatayaki grill restaurant which uses hot coals to skillfully cook meats and vegetables marinated with distinct Japanese flavours. Small plates are cooked to perfection and bursting with flavour, perfectly married to one of their signature cocktails and stylish, incredibly cool looks
The story of Manju’s is an inspirational tale of a hard-working mother holding in her heart the dream of opening her own restaurant for 70 years and having it realised by her children buying her her own place while in her 80s. As heartwarming as the story is, it’s a cold world we live in and the story alone wouldn’t guarantee success if the food wasn’t up to parr. But Manju’s life of cooking and caring translates seamlessly into a professional service with a wonderfully personal touch. The pure vegetarian Gujarati food, which is all prepared by Manju, is served tapas-style, as it comes, and has taken Brighton by storm.
The first Northern Thai restaurant in Brighton, Lucky Khao, shares venue with one of Brighton’s favourite coffee shops, Redroaster. From the award-winning Scandinavian inspired interior design, and deep marinated flavours perfected using the very on-trend Green Egg barbecue, there’s a lot of wow factors here. The chefs at Lucky Khao have trained in Bangkok’s celebrated 100 Mahaseth restaurant, bringing an authentic experience of Northern Thia cuisine into the already very cool mix.
Anglo-Spanish tapas and small plates, a robust wine list and sherry specialist, are bedrocks in the Market Restaurant experience. But it is in social dining that Market makes their way onto our best restaurants Brighton list. The buzz of Market beats in perfect time with the tempo of Spanish flavours. Deep earthy charcuterie, creamy cheeses and flashes of spice leap from plate to plate as the chefs work up a creative spectacle in the open kitchen. Hostess Kate ensures drinks, food and conversation flow in equal measure.
Wild Flor serves classic cuisine, cooked with culinary excellence, served with panache and more than just a dash of superb wine. The latter really is the driving force behind the team who are passionate about unusual and rare grapes, but who wouldn’t dare allow you to enjoy these with anything other than the highest standard of food. This is somewhere to enjoy leisurely to fully enjoy every bite and sip.
Before the plant revolution, if someone ever said vegetarian food was boring, all you had to do is point them at the award-winning Terre à Terre. Twenty-six years on and Terre à Terre continues to push the boundaries of what vegetarian and vegan food can do with fresh, inventive menus that are at once playful and seriously delicious. Not just for those on a plant-based diet, Terre à Terre is one of the best restaurants in Brighton for creative modern dining. Terre à Terre won the BRAVO Plant Champion category in the 2019 BRAVOs.