Bury St Edmunds is now home to Suffolk’s only Michelin starred restaurant, while another of the town’s critically acclaimed fine dining establishments received the Michelin Guide’s 2021 Sommelier Award.
Combine this with a tasty mix of restaurants offering international cuisine, plus gourmet inns, cafés, a brewery, soon to open cheesemonger, farmers’ markets and a food and drink festival and Bury St Edmunds is clearly a burgeoning foodie destination, eager to welcome you once lockdown lifts.
Included amongst the latest Michelin Star 2021 award winners, Pea Porridge was opened by Justin Sharp and his wife Jurga in October 2009. Located on the edge of the historic town centre, the restaurant comprises three unpretentious dining rooms with rustic tables and exposed brick work. Nose-to-tail dishes are a regular staple on the menu, which changes almost every day. Pea Porridge is the first restaurant in Suffolk to achieve a Michelin star since the late 1970s.
Karine Canevet co-owner of Maison Bleue with her husband chef patron, Pascal Canevet, received the Michelin Guide 2021 Sommelier Award. Cooking here is classically French but with modern touches in a converted 17th century town centre house.
Other fine dining venues include 1921 Angel Hill. With chef patron Zack Deakins at the helm, this town centre restaurant has been awarded two AA rosettes for its expertly crafted dishes championing local produce.
Hotel restaurants in and around Bury St Edmunds also offer outstanding cuisine including the stylish Eaterie in the historic Angel Hotel and The Northgate, a boutique Victorian town house offering the only Chef’s Table in the town. Within a short drive, the elegant Gallery restaurant at the 15th century Swan at Lavenham offers fine dining under a superb vaulted and beamed ceiling.
Pubs and a brewery
The award-winning One Bull is one of the most historic pubs in the town. Call in for a locally roasted coffee, a glass of wine or a pint of Brewshed beer (brewed by their sister brewery). Dine from their small but perfectly formed seasonal menu, which is locally sourced where possible. Choose from the 190+ wines in their wine shop, Vino Gusto, to share a bottle in the pub or to take home with you.
Having turned the pub into a wine shop during the first lockdown, Vino Gusto now operates within a designated area of the pub offering local and national delivery and recently received a Silver Star award from Star Wine List, in their Lockdown Wine List category which recognized venues that have taken creative steps to adapt and overcome the pandemic’s effects.
For pub grub well done go to the Tavern on St John’s who use only top quality meat and local producers for their pizzas and burgers. They also offer a full vegan menu.
Greene King has been brewing in the town for more than 200 years and their ales can be enjoyed in local pubs and bars; you can also book a virtual tour and tasting. A visit to the Nutshell Pub is on most visitors list, Britain’s smallest measuring just 15ft x 7ft, it first started serving beer in 1867.
Eat your way around the world – independent outlets and cafés
Whether you enjoy Italian, Indian, Chinese, Mediterranean, Mexican, Turkish or contemporary British, Bury St Edmunds has a restaurant to suit your tastebuds.
Amongst the many independent outlets are Greek family run Café Kottani and Casa and Francela, both of which offer Mediterranean style dishes. For a taste of authentic Indian cuisine book a table at the Valley Connection or for contemporary Chinese fusion dishes look no further than Mings Oriental.
There’s a wide choice of cafés and coffee lounges to relax after a shopping spree or visit to the farmers’ market. Amongst the many are Baileys2, a contemporary coffee bistro in the older part of town; the Really Rather Good licensed coffee house and tea lounge and aviation themed No 5 Angel Hill. Lottie’s specialise in artisan waffles, churros and an all-day brunch menu, while Gastrono-me is a welcome meal stop any time of day. Recently moving to larger premises Wright’s Café is known for its posh cheese toasties, rotisserie menu, ever changing salad selection and sweet treats.
Bury St Edmunds is located just off the A14 trunk road and on train routes from London and Cambridge. For more information about things to see and do visit www.burystedmundsandbeyond.co.uk.