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Simon Rogan's The French Scoops Double Honours

David Blake takes a look at the North West's latest Good Food Guide entries

Written by . Published on September 5th 2014.

Simon Rogan's The French Scoops Double Honours

WE HOPE chef Simon Rogan has a sturdy mantlepiece, we imagine it's probably buckled by now.

"One day people will stop asking you to do these things so you’ve got to grab it while you can. No time for days off. Time to relax later."

Rogan's The French at the Midland Hotel has just added to its cache of accolades, scooping Best Restaurant of the Year in the outside of London category at the Food and Travel Magazine Readers Awards 2014, voted for by the magazine's readers.

It turned out to be a impressive night for The Midland, which also came runner-up in the Hotel of the Year category, only losing out to the prestigious Mandarin Oriental on Hyde Park.

The FrenchThe French

The MidlandThe Midland

2014 looks set to be another award-hoarding for The French, relaunched by Rogan in March 2013, as the recently released Waitrose Good Food Guide 2015 places The French in the top fifteen restaurants in the country - the only Greater Manchester restaurant to feature in the top 50.

The French was also recently awarded three AA Rosettes at the back end of 2013. Three AA Rosettes is the highest number a restaurant open less than six months can achieve.

Oh and Rogan's other restaurant, the two Michelin starred L'Enclume in Cartmel, just took the Good Food Guide 2015's number one slot for the second time running. Meaning Heston Blumenthal's Fat Duck in Berkshire had to settle for runner-up again.

Not happy with two top twenty places, another of Rogan's restaurants, Fera at Claridge's in Mayfair took number 19. Rogan replaced Gordon Ramsey at Claridge's after the restaurant closed in June 2013.

We hate to think of his mileage.

Rogan told us last year: "I don’t get a day off. But at the moment this is my time to go for it. One day people will stop asking you to do these things so you’ve got to grab it while you can. No time for days off. Time to relax later.

Simon RoganSimon Rogan in The French

But it's not just Rogan taking all the plaudits in the region, the North West is celebrating a bumper year following the publication of the Good Food Guide 2015 (copies avaliable from Monday 9 September, from £12.99).

In total 88 establishments in the North West have made it into the pages of the guide, with eleven new entries.

Joing L'Enclume at the top of the tree, the Freemasons at Wiswell in Lancashire has the triple accolade of being ranked as number one in this year’s first ever Top 50 Pub listing, picking up the Editors’ Award for Pub of the Year and reaching position 41 on the Top 50 Restaurants list - the first ever pub to achieve a Score 7 in the guide.

Two other pubs from the area have also made the list - The White Hart in Lydgate takes position 31, and The Duke of York Inn in Grindleton placed at 45. 

Three other restaurants in the North West have made it on to the Top 50 Restaurant listing – Fraiche in Merseyside at number 17, Simon Radley at the Chester Grosvenor in Cheshire at 46, and Northcote in Lancashire at number 49.


The other new entries in the North West who have landed a spot in Waitrose Good Food Guide 2015 are:

Stolen Lamb and La Popote in Cheshire; Old Stamp House, Pig & WhistleMrs Miller’s and Oak Bank Hotel in Cumbria; Manchester House, Lily’s Vegetarian Indian Cuisine and Eagle & Child in Greater Manchester; The Parkers Arms in Lancashire and Bistro 21 in Southport, Merseyside

The region is also home to some of the longest serving restaurants in the guide; Quince & Medlar in Cumbria has been listed in the guide for 26 years, Northcote in Lancashire has featured for 28 years consecutively, and Farlam Hall in Cumbria has clocked up 38 years.

Elizabeth Carter, Consultant Editor of the Waitrose Good Food Guide, said:

"The North West is known for its good, affordable restaurants and the fantastic new entries this year can only add to that reputation. But it also has chefs like Simon Rogan and Nigel Haworth of Northcote setting a very high top bar. And congratulations to Steven Smith at the Freemasons Arms –  he has given the Northwest one of the most fascinating pubs in the UK."

North West, give yourselves a pat on the back.


Good Food Guide 2015 Top 50 Restaurants:

(scores in brackets are out of 10)

1. L’Enclume, Cumbria (10)

2. The Fat Duck, Berkshire (10)

3. Restaurant Gordon Ramsay (10)

4. Restaurant Nathan Outlaw, Cornwall (9)

5. Hibiscus, London (9)

6. Pollen Street Social, London (9)

7. Restaurant Sat Bains, Nottinghamshire (9)

8. The Square, London (8)

9. Le Champignon Sauvage, Gloucestershire (8)

10. The Ledbury, London (8)

11. Andrew Fairlie at Gleneagles, Tayside (8)

12. Midsummer House, Cambridgeshire (8)

13. Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons, Oxfordshire (8)

14. The French, Manchester (8)

15. Le Gavroche, London (8)

16. Whatley Manor, The Dining Room, Wiltshire (8)

17. Fraiche, Merseyside (8)

18. André Garrett at Cliveden, Berkshire (7)

19. Fera at Claridges, London (7)

20. Marcus, London (7)

21. Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, London (7)

22. The Kitchin, Edinburgh (7)

23. The Waterside Inn, Berkshire (7)

24. Pied-à- Terre, London (7)

25. Alain Ducasse at the Dorchester, London (7)

26. Michael Wignall at the Latymer, Surrey (7)

27. Restaurant Martin Wishart, Edinburgh (7)

28. Artichoke, Buckinghamshire (7)

29. Fischer’s Baslow Hall, Derbyshire (7)

30. Restaurant James Sommerin, Glamorgan (7)

31. The Peat Inn, Fife (7)

32. Murano, London (7)

33. Paul Ainsworth at No. 6, Cornwall (7)

34. Gidleigh Park, Devon (7)

35. Hedone, London (7)

36. Hambleton Hall, Rutland (7)

37. Restaurant Story, London (7)

38. The Pass, West Sussex (7)

39. Casamia, Bristol (7)

40. Ynyshir Hall, Powys (7)

41. Freemasons at Wiswell, Lancashire (7)

42. Hélène Darroze at the Connaught, London (6)

43. The Hand & Flowers, Buckinghamshire (6)

44. The Yorke Arms, Ramsgill, Yorkshire (6)

45. Paris House, Bedfordshire (6)

46. Simon Radley at the Chester Grosvenor, Cheshire (6)

47. The Raby Hunt, Durham (6)

48. Chiltern Firehouse, London (6)

49. Northcote, Lancashire (6)

50. The Clove Club, London (6)


Good Food Guide 2015 Top 50 Pubs:

(scores in brackets are out of 10)

1. Freemasons at Wiswell, Lancashire

2. The Hand & Flowers, Buckinghamshire

3. The Red Lion, East Chisenbury, Wiltshire

4. The Royal Oak, Paley Street, Berkshire

5. The Sportsman, Kent

6. The Pipe and Glass Inn, Yorkshire

7. The Gunton Arms, Norfolk

8. The White Oak, Cookham, Berkshire

9. The Butchers Arms, Eldersfield, Gloucestershire

10. The Treby Arms, Devon

11. The Hardwick, Abergavenny

12. The Nut Tree Inn, Oxfordshire                   

13. The Stagg Inn, Titley, Herefordshire

14. The Star Inn, Harome, Yorkshire

15. The Harwood Arms, Fulham, London

16. The Plough, Bolnhurst, Bedfordshire

17. The Plough Inn, Longparish, Hampshire

18. The Hinds Head, Berkshire

19. The Masons Arms, Knowstone, Devon

20. The Broad Chare, Tyne & Wear

21. The Springer Spaniel, Cornwall

22. The Wellington Arms, Baughurst, Hampshire

23. The British Larder, Suffolk

24. The Sir Charles Napier, Oxfordshire

25. The Pony & Trap, Chew Magna, Somerset

26. The Star Inn, Sparsholt, Oxfordshire

27. The Felin Fach Griffin, Powys

28. The Duke of Cumberland Arms, West Sussex

29. The Richmond Arms, West Ashling, West Sussex

30. The Foxhunter, Gwent

31. The White Hart, Lydgate, Greater Manchester

32. The General Tarleton, Yorkshire

33. The Kinmel Arms, Conwy

34. The Wheatsheaf, Combe Hay, Somerset

35. The Five Alls, Oxfordshire

36. The Bay Horse, Hurworth on Tees, Durham

37. The Bildeston Crown, Suffolk

38. The Malt House, Fulham, London

39. The Earl of March, West Sussex

40. The Kingham Plough, Oxfordshire

41. The Star @ Sancton, Yorkshire

42. The Black Swan, Oldstead, Yorkshire

43. Beckford Arms, Wiltshire

44. The Wheatsheaf Inn, Northleach, Gloucestershire

45. The Duke of York Inn, Grindleton, Lancashire

46. The Rummer, Bristol

47. Camberwell Arms, Camberwell, London

48. The Crown, Old Basing, Hampshire

49. Smokehouse, Islington, London

50. The White Horse, Brancaster Staithe, Norfolk


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Wall-ESeptember 5th 2014.

Is mr coopers not in then? Will find out next week but shock omission.

1 Response: Reply To This...
James DunnSeptember 7th 2014.

Mr Coopers won't be in and you will find out why next week when you go.

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