The Sun

Anne and I met for lunch at The Sun pub on Chobham High Street. It may not look much from the outside, but inside is hugely charming and inviting.

The Sun Chobham exterior

The pub is part of The White Brasserie group, group of Surrey pubs that combines traditional Britishness with French food. The feel is very fresh without being soulless.

The original section of the pub is charming, complete with wood fires and cosy corners.

The Sun Chobham bar area

When the White Brasserie Company took over the pub in 2014, they sympathetically built a large extension to the side that now serves as the restaurant area. It’s a beautiful double aspect space with a huge amount of light. High ceilings and exposed beams give it character, even though it’s new.

It was very busy during our visit, but was quiet enough to easily carry on a conversation.

The Sun Chobham restaurant area

Service is friendly and attentive. The atmosphere relaxed but sophisticated.

A la carte menus change seasonally. Set menus change monthly. We both dined from the lunch menu, two courses £9.95.

I started with the Potted smoked mackerel, horseradish cream, toasted baguette. It was yummy, though I might have done with a bit more toast.

Smoked mackerel pate The Sun Chobham

Anne went straight to mains withe the Steak frites ‘Express’ (£2 supplement.) She really enjoyed the meal. The steak was delicious, the salad well dressed and the chips crispy with fluffy centres.

Cornish minute steak steak frites The Sun Chobham

While I wanted all of the appetisers, I struggled a bit with mains. Not because they didn’t sound delicious but because they sounded heavy for lunch. I settled on the Spanish omelette, roasted red peppers, potatoes, onions, olives & courgettes, roquette salad. I really enjoyed it, the delicious vegetables were generous and took centre stage over the eggs.

Mind also came with a pot of chips, which was far more food than I could manage.

Spanish omelet The Sun Chobham

Finally, Anne and her sweet tooth had dessert, the Steamed lemon sponge pudding, lemon curd sauce. It was chock full of lemon flavour cut through with the cream. Levels of great textures made for a tasty treat.

steamed lemon sponge pudding The Sun Chobham

The White Brasserie has seven other pubs in Surrey (all of their pubs are in Surrey), including The Queen’s Head in Weybridge. The Cricketers Downside, near Cobham is currently undergoing a million pound renovation and due to open in March 2016.

The Sun is definitely a good choice for a meal in Chobham. It’s definitely worth venturing into the village for. The White Brasserie group has a reliable selection of Surrey pubs that offer both great food in charming old pubs.

High Street, Chobham, Surrey GU24 8AF
Small car park, large village car park nearby
Dogs welcomed in bar area

Garson’s Restaurant Revisited

After attending the official launch of Garson’s Restaurant, I was so impressed and intrigued that I hurried back to see how it was on a regular business day.

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As I’ve just blogged about it so recently, I won’t regurgitate the same thing again, but you can read the details of the new restaurant on my post Garson’s Restaurant official opening/

Daylight photos give you a much better sense of the space, of the glass ceilings and the impressive central glass lantern. (Bizarrely in the photo it looks like half the lights are burnt out, but I promise they were all on.)


In summer, the glass walls will fold back, blending the strawberry picking fields with the restaurant.

We visited on Sunday, probably arriving about one thirty. The restaurant was very nearly full. There was a nice background buzz but it wasn’t noisy, we could easily have a conversation and hear ourselves without having to strain, possibly because of the slant of the ceiling.


Outside is still a work in progress, which will no doubt be finished in time for summer. The area overlooks the strawberry picking area and fields to the right. (I didn’t photograph them because the work being done didn’t make for a pretty picture.)


There are tons of goodies to tempt you, for dessert or if you’re only coming for coffee.

All staff members we dealt with were cheery and friendly. A staff member was greeting guests at the door, to help people navigate the new restaurant. Tables seemed to be promptly cleared.


Order at the central cash area then take your fancy gadget to a table, it sends a signal out so the waitstaff can easily find you (the wooden spoon of the 21st century.)

We were shock when our food arrived shortly after we’d ordered it. I’d barely sat down from nosing around when it came.

For lunch, Jman had the Hot steak & cheese ciabatta erved with sweet potato fries & house slaw £8.95. He loved it, the beef was really tender, good slaw and nice sweet potato fries.


Being Sunday, I went for the Roast chicken & stuffing served with roast potatoes, carrots, green beans, Yorkshire pudding and gravy £9.95. Wow, I was really surprised at the quality of the food. Fresh thyme and even half a bulb of garlic was on my plate along with with food, and the flavours were definitely apparent. A real man sized portion, there’s no way I could have finished it. What excellent value for money.


Garson’s Restaurant definitely didn’t disappoint in the daylight. It’s a lovely spot with a great sense of light that serves up great food. I most definitely be returning.

Winterdown Road,West End, Esher, Surrey, KT10 8LS
Dogs welcomed in designated areas (inside and out)

Garson’s Restaurant

Last night I had the pleasure of attending the new restaurant at Garson’s Farm in Esher’s West End official opening. I don’t know if you’ve eaten at Garson’s in the past, but throw all those memories of boring out the window, this new restaurant is sure to become a destination lunch spot in Surrey.

Garson's Farm Restaurant octagon glass lantern

Housed in a brand new show stopping building, the octagonal room reminiscent of a city market, complete with art deco steel framework. Highlight is the raised octagonal lantern in the centre of the room, punctuated with a huge chandelier.

Only a small section of roof over the entire room isn’t glass. Retractable glass doors on four sides of the octagon fully open in summer, giving access to the patio and views over their fields down to the River Mole.

Interestingly, they’d laid 8km of pipes underneath their fields, and that provides geothermal heat for the restaurant and heats the water used in the kitchen and restrooms.

Garson's Farm Restaurant interiorGarson's Farm Restaurant inside dining area with sliding glass doors to fields

It’s a huge space. Inside, seating is a mix of comfy booths and traditional country style tables, broken up around the large space with accented seating areas of banquettes and mood lit tables.

Outside is a huge patio area for al fresco dining in warmer months.

We sampled a variety of delicious canapes.

Garson's Farm Restaurant canape spread

The menu changes seasonally. All food is prepared fresh onsite. Often using ingredients grown onsite and picked that morning. Most baked goods baked onsite, including scones and tray bakes. Even Scotch Eggs and some breads are made onsite.

What isn’t made onsite is sourced locally as much as possible (local bakeries, etc.) Meat is sourced form a local butcher.

We sampled miniature versions of several dishes form the menu, (fish & chips, macaroni and cheese, burger with stilton, beef brisket and mash.) They were all tasty, my favourite was the mac and cheese, it was nice and creamy with lots of flavour.

Garson's Farm Restaurant fish and chipsGarson's Farm Restaurant potted macaroni and cheeseGarson's Farm Restaurant beef and stilton burgerGarson's Farm Restaurant beef brisket

The menu offers an assortment of dishes, from salads (£6.95), sandwiches (£5.25-£7.45) and jacket potatoes (6.95-7.95) to full meals (£7.95-£9.75) and sharing platters (£11.25). Kids options are pick n mix lunch boxes (£4.55) and hot meals (£4.95).

Traditional Sunday lunches (£9.95), a selection of meats plus vegetarian option (can accommodate Vegans if advanced notice is given.)

Breakfast is served until 11:30, for which there’s a good selection to choose from, from a make your own smoothie bar (£2.95 adults) to a full farmhouse breakfast (£6.95 meat or vegetarian).

Order at the counter and food is brought to your table.

We sampled a few of the sweet treats, including a mouthwateringly delicious crumble.

Garson's Farm Restaurant browniesGarson's Farm Restaurant apple and berry crumble rubarb

Perhaps most exciting of all (for my Canadian guests anyway) is the Garson’s afternoon tea, three tiers of goodies, £12.95 for two people, or with prosecco £17.95 for two people.

There’s also a daily selection of all sorts of treats, displayed on the counter.

Garson's Farm Restaurant afternoon teaGarson's Farm Restaurant sweet treats, cupcakes

Unfortunately the local council won’t give them permission to open in the evenings so they close at 5.30 (4.30 in winter excluding Christmas) Monday through Saturday and 4.45 on Sundays (year round.)

I’ve got to say, I’m really glad I live ten minutes away and most definitely will be visiting. Even if you’re not so close, Garson’s is well worth an outing. I have every confidence the new Garson’s Restaurant will be a game changer for the local area.

Reservations accepted (and best advised if you have dietary needs – inform them ahead of time to be catered for.)

Winterdown Road,West End, Esher, Surrey, KT10 8LS
Dogs welcomed in designated areas (inside and out)

Richard Onslow Cranleigh

A drive through the beautiful Surrey Hills brought us to lunch at The Richard Onslow in England’s largest village, Cranleigh.

The Richard Onslow cranleigh

Located in a neat building, parts of which date back 500 years, on the high street, the pub started life as a coaching inn. They still have ten hotel rooms, some of which are dog friendly – perfect for a weekend of dog walks in the surrounding hills.

The restaurant area is a delightful, I want to say Georgian, room complete with double aspect sash windows that let in tons of light giving the room an airy feel. I particularly love the super long double fronted banquette down the centre of the room.

main Georgian dining area The Richard Onslow pub

It’s a Peach Pub (their only Surrey location), a group of pubs that pride themselves on preparing all fresh food, seasonally sourced where possible from British suppliers. Menus change seasonally, as well as a good selection of specials. Service is super friendly and the vibe is relaxed.

To the left of the entrance is a charming pub area. It’s a contrast the the restaurant area, has a much older feel and comes complete with a working Inglenook fireplace and flagstone floors.

open fire in pub area The Richard Onslow
The entire building was completely renovated when Peach Pubs bought the property six years ago and feels current and fresh.

In addition to outside tables along the high street in front of the pub there’s also a dining area in the old coaching inn’s courtyard.

Court yard al fresco seating area The Richard Onslow

For lunch, Jman started with the Soup of the day, broccoli and stilton £5.25. He really like the croutons on the side concept, they were nice and salty and he could control how many we in the soup. The soup itself was good and nippy from the stilton, very morish.

broccoli and stilton soup with croutons The Richard Onslow

I started with the Free range smoked duck, almond, watercress & orange salad, quackling £8.75. I was surprised when it came, I thought I was getting little pieces of duck in a whole lot of lettuce, instead I got a big piece of nicely flavoured, moist duck with great orange flavours. The quackling was quacker jack.

smoked Duck salad The Richard Onslow

For his main, Jman chose, again from the specials board, Sauteed chicken, smoked bacon & mushroom sauce, Dauphinoise potato £13. The dish was full of flavour and the chicken nice and juicy. He was very pleased with his choice.

sauteed Chicken The Richard Onslow

For my main I had the Roast squash, spinach & barley wellington, vegetarian gravy £13.75. When I saw barley on the menu I immediately had to order it, it reminds me of my childhood. I’d always loved it then in the stews my mother made and it was a super treat to find it on a menu (having never noticed it on an English menu before.)

It was a unique vegetarian dish,interesting with lots of flavours and all round yummy, though I did wish for a bit more squash.

Vegetarian en croute barley and butternut squash The Richard Onslow

Despite the January pledge to watch our weight, we couldn’t resist sharing the Lemon tart, toasted marshmallows and a poached fruit salad £6 The other bits on the plate are white chocolate (the triangles and the ‘stick’) I felt like I’d stepped onto the set of Masterchef when the plate was set down in front of us.

We immediately cursed ourselves for not ordering two desserts (or three). We were expecting standard lemon tart but got something special. If passing through Cranleigh definitely stop in if only for dessert.

Amazing lemon tart dessert The Richard Onslow

The Richard Onslow serves up an impressive quality of food in a great old building and is definitely worth a visit. My complements to the chef.

113 – 117 High St, Cranleigh Village, Surrey, GU6 8AU
Street parking or town lots
Dogs welcome

We were guests of The Richard Onslow but this is no way biased my review.

Three Horseshoes

On our way home from Star Wars at the Staines Vue, we popped into the Three Horseshoes in Laleham for some lunch. The pub has been on my want to visit list for some time. It’s Pearmain Pub, which is a group that burst onto the scene in Surrey over the past few years. (See Red Lion Horsell and The Old Plough.)

Three Horseshoes Laleham pub exterior

We arrived after 2pm and the pub was packed. We were lucky enough to find one available table in the bar area – the restaurant was full. Granted it was the Saturday after New Year’s but still you would be wise to make a reservation.

Three Horseshoes Laleham bar area

From outside it looks like a smallish house converted into a pub. Inside is a rambling series of rooms, some belonging to the bar and some to the restaurant. The rooms are stylishly decorated. The bar area we sat in was filled with fun a4 size retro posters relating to nearby Shepperton Studios.

Because the rooms are small, the noise level is not too loud but as they spill into one another you still get the buzzy vibe. You’d be hard pressed to find a better atmosphere, even in other Pearmain Pubs.

Three Horseshoes Laleham interior dining area

There’s a large outdoor patio.

Service is friendly, helpful and knowledgable.

Three Horseshoes Laleham outdoor patio

The menu is well thought out with something for everyone. All food is prepared fresh onsite.

We started with Olives £2.25 from bar snacks menu.

Three Horseshoes Laleham olives

We ordered a side of Calamari £4.75 from bar snacks menu. The calamari itself was divine. Well spiced, crispy coating on fat rings of squid. The dip was a little blah, I think it was just mayonnaise.

Three Horseshoes Laleham calamari

For his lunch, my father in law had the Beetroot houmous, avocado, carrot, sunblushed tomatoes & feta cheese on granary bread with wild mushroom soup £7.50. It was a lot of food for lunch, a large sandwich plus the side of soup but everything was really tasty. The wild mushroom soup of the day was particularly memorable.

Three Horseshoes Laleham vegetable and feta sandwich with mushroom soup

Jman went for the Crispy bacon, brie, fresh tomato salsa & spinach on granary with home cut chips £7.50. The chips were lovely, the salsa fresh and the sandwich very good. Probably more than good, he’s raved about this pub ever since. He also appreciated the notable selection of ales and he definitely wants to return here.

Three Horseshoes Laleham bacon and brie sandwich with chips

After an indulgent holiday season, I opted for Feta cheese, soya beans, butternut squash, broccoli, avocado, spinach & blueberry salad with garlic, lemon & yoghurt dressing, soy toasted seeds & nuts £9.95. I felt healthy just eating it, finally a day in getting all my five. Filled with many different ingredients, it was nice and varied though a shaper dressing wouldn’t have gone amiss but overall I enjoyed it.

Three Horseshoes Laleham superfood salad

I don’t think you can go wrong with the Three Horseshoes in Lalelam. It offers superb food in a wonderful atmosphere, and would be suitable for both a casual lunch and a stylish dinner with friends.

25 Shepperton Road, Laleham, Staines, Middlesex, TW18 1SE
Car park (behind building, look for signs to the right of the pub)
Dogs welcome on the patio

The Refectory

As you may know, whenever I have a visitor from Canada I always seek out an extra impressive Surrey pub to take them to. On a hot tip, this time we headed to The Refectory in Godalming for an impressive lunch in a massive converted half-timbered cattle barn.

the Refectory Godalming exterior

Inside is simply stunning. Wood beams criss cross everywhere, there’s baby windows and balconies and either end of the building. This pub has the definite wow factor.

the Refectory Godalming interior grand restaurant area with half timbers

A bar sits in the middle, flanked on either side by the bar area and the restaurant area. There’s not too much difference between the two areas, one offers table service and the other allows dogs.

the Refectory Godalming half timbered bar area

It’s a Brunning and Price pub. Brunning and Price have several pubs in Surrey, including my very first post, The Mute Swan in Hampton Court. They do a great job at making each of their locations seem like an individual pub.

There’s an atmospheric patio area outside.

the Refectory Godalming outdoor al fresco seating area patio

We brought our doggie so sat in the bar area and didn’t have table service. However, all the staff we spoke with were very friendly and helpful.

The menu is broken into small sections that cater to a whole host of wants. Much of the menu changes seasonally. The Refectory’s menu has many interesting options, from pigeon breast to Sicilian fish stew (as well as some old favourites). We had a hard time choosing just one dish.

Except daughter two, who can always be counted on to order Pea and ham soup with cheese toasty £6.25.

the Refectory Godalming pea and ham soup

She also had an order of Garlic ciabatta £3.50 She enjoyed both of her dishes.

the Refectory Godalming garlic bread

The Canadian guest, my father-in-law, chose the Broccoli and blackstick blue cheese quiche with potato salad £8.95. The quiche was very tasty, he really rated it, and the potato salad was also very nice.

the Refectory Godalming blue cheese quiche

Jman had the Rump steak sandwich with fried onions, tomato chutney and a few chips £9.95. He reports it was good overall, the steak may have been a bit chewy but not too bad.

the Refectory Godalming rump steak sandwich

Daughter one had the Rare roast beef with rocket and horseradish on white bread £6.75. She reports it was very, very, very good.

the Refectory Godalming rare roast beef sandwich

My interest piqued, I settled on the Wild boar and chorizo meatballs in slow cooked tomato and basil sauce with creamy sage polenta £9.95. I loved it though I had to concentrate to notice the chorizo. The tomato sauce was super yummy and even the polenta was moreish.

the Refectory Godalming wild boar and chorizo meathballs with polenta

Each of my children ordered a dessert, that way I can eat some and keep my conscience clear.

Number two ordered my favourite, Sticky toffee pudding with apricot sauce and clotted cream £5.75. She suffered because I ate half of it, as it was so delicious. She needs to learn from her sister and order something I’m not so keen on.

the Refectory Godalming sticky toffee pudding

Number one selected the Chocolate and salted caramel tart with raspberry sorbet £6.50. I only had one bite of this, it’s not my thing but she loved it and ate every last morsel.

chocolate and salted caramel tart the Refectory Godalming

We loved The Refectory. It was good food in incredible surroundings. We’ll definitely bring the next set of Canadian houseguests to it.

Portsmouth Road, Milford, Godalming, GU8 5HJ
Large car park
Dogs welcome in bar area

The Greyhound

I haven’t dont a post in a while. My camera broke and I was unsatisfied with the substitute I had. Finally I have my camera back and was eager to use it so the four of us plus one Canadian visitor headed out to The Greyhound pub in Thames Ditton.

The Greyhound pub exterior

An enthusiastic couple bought the pub two years ago. They removed the grim and uncovered some lovely original features – open fires, light wood panelling and a pretty set of doors. They’ve completely revamped the garden, turning it into a large al fresco seating area.

The inside is a bit of a reverse Tardis. I would recommend sitting near the bar to capture the ambiance, we were towards the back of the pub which was away from the action. Above all I’d recommend sitting in the charming ‘snug’ but this area is only open at peak business or for private groups.

The Greyhound Pub interior

Staff are super friendly. Food is prepared fresh onsite and menu options change seasonally. The menu is divided into small and big plates. Small plates are intended as appetisers and big as mains. There’s also a children’s menu, on which all options are £7.

From the small plate section we decided to share Camembert to Share with toasts and cranberry dip £7 as a starter. The pile of bread was enough to give everyone a nice amount. The cranberry dip was lovely.

The Greyhound Pub baked camembert

For mains, Daughter two had the Buddy’s Beef Burger: Served in a bun with chips, salad crudites and ketchup £7. She ate it all, which is saying a lot for that child, she never finishes anything. It wasn’t a small portion either, a good sized burger and plenty of food on her plate.

The Greyhound Pub kid's cheeseburger

Daughter one had Lana’s Chicken: Breast strips in breadcrumbs with chips and seasonal veg £7. It was good, she probably could have done with another piece of chicken but it was really nice to see a child’s menu item come with vegetables.

The Greyhound Pub kid's chicken bites

For mains, our Canadian guest had the British Sausages and Mash with onion chutney £11.50. We asked, British sausages are a pork based sausage from the local butcher. It was a good dish, nice and tasty.

The Greyhound Pub British sausage and mash

For his main, Jman selected the Crispy Chicken Breast with minted peas and crushed potatoes £12. A fair sized portion, the herb crust was flavourful and the chicken juicy.

The Greyhound Pub breaded chicken

I naturally wanted everything on the small plates menu and nothing from the large, typical. I decided on one small plate with a side. I chose the Chicken skewer, celeriac & apple salad, coronation mayo £6. It was a bit on the small side, for a small but the chicken was perfectly cooked, tender and juicy. The mayo was moreish and the apple coleslaw portion generous.

The Greyhound Pub chicken skewer with apple slaw

To turn my small plate selection into a meal I ordered a side of Triple Cooked Chips £3. They are Hand cut on site. I was dubious when they arrived, triple cooked chips are normally square not rectangular but one bite and I was sold. They were super yummy, more rectangular chips please.

The Greyhound Pub triple cooked chips

It’s wonderful to find a pub run by such enthusiasm independent owners where you’re guaranteed a warm welcome. I wish them best of luck with their venture.

Weston Green, Thames Ditton, Surrey KT7 0JP
Street Parking
Dog’s welcome throughout the inside

Waggon and Horses

Eight months ago the Waggon and Horses pub in Surbiton underwent a major refurbishment and changed a Thai menu. My husband and I checked it out with a Saturday night dinner.

Waggon and Horses exterior

The front of the pub is divided between a bar with plenty of standing room and a large comfortable room with leather sofas and a large screen television.

Now I have to apologise for the next two photos, my camera didn’t cope well with the low lighting in the pub.

Waggon and Horses bar area

Go straight through the pub area and you are greeted with a short flight of stairs theatrically dressed with gold curtains. Through the curtains is the new Thai restaurant. A tented ceiling, wood panelling and Thai decorations create a superb dining room. It’s a charming, intimate space that’s suitable for a ‘date night.’

Waggon and Horses dining area

A real tuk tuk, three sided multi-coloured booths and lots of other cute embellishments make the Al Fresco dining area in back super appealing, though difficult to photograph after sunset.

Waggon and Horses outdoor seating area

The menu has all your favourite Thai dishes plus a few choices from other parts of Asia. All food is prepared fresh on site.

The service is friendly and welcoming. Manager Meena was able to offer plenty of assistance with the menu options.

We nibbled on Thai Spicy Prawn Crackers with Sweet Chilli Dip £2.50 before our meal.

Waggon and Horses prawn crackers

For starters we decided on a sharing platter, Kingfisher Platter Tempura Prawns, Thai Fish Cakes, Steamed Dim Sum, Sesame Prawn Toast, Crispy Salt & Pepper Squid with Sweet Chilli and Satay Sauce £12.95 We thoroughly enjoyed all of them, the little mystery dim sum was lovely and the squid was top notch.

Waggon and Horses starter platter

For mains Jman was immediately drawn to the five chilli pepper symbol beside the Infamous Jungle Curry with fresh Red Chilli, Bamboo Shoots, Green Beans, Peppers, Thai Aubergine, Holy Basil, Wild Ginger and Lime Leaf with Beef £8.95. At the bottom of the menu, diners are warned that the five chilli pepper dishes are “only for the brave.” Infamous and brave are apparently words he looks for in a dinner and he ordered it immediately. It arrived steaming hot.

I watched him eat, he drank quite a bit of water with it but naturally won’t acknowledge that fact now. He says it was spicy but not overly hot. However he did eat it all and enjoyed it, it had lots of flavour beyond just being spicy.

Waggon and Horses Infamous jungle curry

Naturally I wasn’t going to share in the five chilli dish so we elected not to share out dishes. I chose the two chilli pepper Bangkok’s famous Red Curry with Lime Leaf, Coconut Milk,Thai Sweet Basil, Peppers and Pineapple with Tiger Prawns £9.50. It was tasty, not at all heavy and filled with plenty of nice, fresh vegetables along with the tiger prawns.

Waggon and Horses Thai red curry

We also had a couple of side dishes. The Coconut Infused Rice £2.95 was noticeably coconutty (unlike many places) and not stodgy.

Waggon and Horses coconut rice

The Stir-fried Broccoli, Green Beans, Carrot and Mangetout with Light Soy Sauce £3.50 were great, perfectly cooked and we actually ate them all.

Waggon and Horses vegetables in oyster sauce

For dessert we elected to share the Lotee Sai Mapraw Warm Pandan Pancake with Sweetened Coconut, drizzled with Honey with Almond, Pistachio & Cardamon Ice Cream £5.50. This was a perfect dessert, nice and light, not too sweet and a great palate cleanser. It was a large portion and more than enough for both of us.

Waggon and Horses Lotee Sai Mapraw Thai pancake dessert

We really enjoyed our dinner at the Waggon and Horses. The decor and atmosphere in the restaurant is a notch above most pub dining areas and the food matches the surroundings.

Authentic Pub Co. is a small group of eight pubs, with other Surrey locations in Epsom, Sunbury on Thames, Hampton, Norbiton and Worplesdon.

Waggon and Horses, 1 Surbiton Hill Road, Surbiton, Surrey, KT6 4TW
Street parking.

We were guests of Waggon and Horses but this is no way biased my review.

Naturally Chinese Restaurant

Intrigued by Naturally Chinese Restaurant’s boasts of healthy Chinese food, my husband and our two kids visited for my second birthday dinner (I know, right).

Far beyond claims of no MSG, Naturally Chinese in Surbiton, set menus have been put together with the aid of nutritionists for feel good, detox and natural balance. There’s a huge number of vegetarian dishes as well as a large gluten free menu.

Naturally Chinese Restaurant exterior

Inside is huge. The back corner (pictured) is the most charming section of the restaurant. That big circular table in the corner under the huge light well is the prized place you want to sit, unfortunately our server wouldn’t let me sit there.

Naturally Chinese Restaurant interior

The menu is large and enticing, a mix of some standards and some more interesting sounding dishes. I would have liked more direction from our server in the way of recommendations but eventually we narrowed down our selections.

To start, Jman and daughter 1 shared the tasting platter with raw mixed vegetable salad, marinated chicken satay skewers, spare ribs in capital sauce, crispy prawn rolls, shredded chicken smoked with beechwood £17.80. I, of course, helped them eat it. One taste of the smoked chicken and it was impossible to resist going back for more.

Naturally Chinese Restaurant tasting platter

For starters, daughter two and I shared the Steamed dim sum platter crystal prawn dumplings, prawn and chive dumplings, spicy mixed vegetable dumplings, salmon dumplings with grounded peppercorns £11.20 (prepared on site). They were lovely and light with no shortage of flavour.

Naturally Chinese Restaurant steamed dim sum platter

In typical Chinese fashion, we shared several dishes for the main course.

I chose Chicken with shredded sweet peppers, spring onions and fresh chilli in satay sauce £7.90 This was absolutely delicious, the chicken was tender and moist and the flavours were great.

Naturally Chinese Restaurant chicken with shredded peppers in satay sauce

Jman chose a more traditional Crispy shredded beef £8.10. It might not have fit with my healthy Chinese restaurant choice but it sure was tasty.

Naturally Chinese Restaurant crispy shredded beef

Wanting vegetables for my family, I ordered Pak choy £6.40 stir fried in fresh garlic flakes. I was the only one that ate any. I love love pak choy and that’s exactly what it was.

Naturally Chinese Restaurant pak choy in garlic sauce

Lastly we had an order of Special fried rice £6.60 peass, shrimps and roast pork and chicken. Yep, very nice special fried rice with good quality ingredients.

Naturally Chinese Restaurant special fried rice

They did have some interesting sounding desserts but a birthday cake was waiting for me at home.

Overall I enjoyed the Natural Chinese Restaurant and would like to return for Dim Sum (they even run Dim Sum classes, if you want to make your own). It was definitely a cut above your bog standard Chinese.

59-63 Brighton Road, Surbiton, Surrey, KT6 5LR
Street parking

Riverside Restaurant

I love the view across the Thames from East Molesey, forget the beautiful bridge or the palace in the background, it’s the boats and the Cartlon Mitre building with the grand semi circle of windows jutting out over the Thames I adore. I’ve often wondered what it’s like on the other side of those windows and now I was about to find out.

Riverside Restaurant from across Thames

The Riverside Restaurant in the Carlton Mitre opposite Hampton Court Palace has a new chef and all new menu. I was excited to visit the restaurant for my birthday. The entrance is to the left of the main hotel entrance.

Riverside Restaurant entrance

We sat in the big circular room overhanging the river, it’s a room rich in wood and cosy lighting, plus one of the biggest rot iron chandeliers I’ve ever seen. A roaring fire and light music completes the atmosphere and make it a perfect setting for a grey winter’s ay.

Riverside Carlton Mitre interior

Outside a patio is tucked between the building, the hotel and the Thames. You could practically dip your toes in the water while you ate. This is one of the best riverside al fresco dining areas around, shame my visit was in November.

Riverside Carlton Mitre al fresco dining on Thames at Hampton Court Bridge

Downstairs is a brasserie with it’s own riverside patio if you are looking for more casual dining.

The restaurant also serves full afternoon tea, complete with divine homemade macaroons.

Riverside Restaurant macaroons

Service is friendly and sophisticated. The menu is modern English with a few twists. There’s lots of fish options and any dietary needs are catered for.

To begin we had Marinate olives with homemade bread, balsamic & aged olive oil £6.00. Our selection was (left to right) soda, Guinness and sun-dried tomato. One bite and we knew we were in trouble. The bread was outrageously good. Forget leaving room for more courses, we couldn’t stop eating it. The Guinness was my favourite, all malty goodness.

Riverside Carlton Mitre home made bread and olives

For starters, J man opted for the Soup of the day £5.95, which was Celeriac. He really enjoyed the soup once, it had a nice texture and flavour. Again was unable to resist eating the homemade bread.

Riverside Carlton Mitre celeraic soup

I started with the Beetroot marinated salmon, capers, watercress, lemon alioli, homemade brown bread £8.50. This is one of my dream dishes and it didn’t disappoint. I loved it, though to be truthful I didn’t dare taste the bread for fear of being unable to stop eating it. I gave it to Jman, who ate it, silly boy.

Riverside Carlton Mitre beetroot salmon starter

For mains Jman had the Whole roast plaice, samphire, brown shrimps, beluga lentils, anchovy & Chervil butter £15.00. I don’t know why he was surprised when it came with a head, it clearly says whole on the menu. Nevermind, once he got over it the fish was perfectly cooked, nice and moist and the accoutrements made it a tasty dish. Most important of all he was able to finish the whole dish after all the bread.

Whole place with samphire and brown shrimp Riverside restaurant

For my main I was intrigued to try the Duck ‘Shepherds’ Pie’, seasonal vegetables £13.50. Wow, I couldn’t believe the size of it when it arrived at the table. Even if I hadn’t stuffed myself with bread, olives and salmon there’s no way I could eat this American sized portion. You may think the dish looks big enough but it was packed full of duck, no mash filler here. The price per pound of food is a steal. As for the food itself, the duck was tender and delicious and the steamed vegetables were lovely.

Riverside Carlton Mitre duck shepherd's pie

It was my birthday and I wasn’t about to let a little issue like being thoroughly stuffed get between me and dessert. Still, I had to concede something and we opted to share a Riverside Fumble, peaches, vanilla custard & marscapone, granola crumble, £6.50. What a perfect way to end the meal, it was light and refreshing, a real palate cleanser and exactly my kind of treat.

Riverside Carlton Mitre peach fool

We throughly enjoyed our meal at the Riverside Restaurant. It’s a great option for both cosy winter indoor and sunny summer al fresco dining in Surrey.

Riverside Restaurant, Carlton Mitre Hotel, Hampton Court Road, Hampton Court, East Molesey, KT8 9BN
Small car park, can double park if you leave your keys with the concierge, also a few pay and display spots alternatively use the car park at Hampton Court station.

We were guests of Riverside Restaurant but this is no way biased my review.