Best foodie towns and villages in Surrey
PUBLISHED: 09:38 13 June 2017 | UPDATED: 09:38 13 June 2017
You don’t have to travel far for great food and drink in Surrey these days. Make a note to visit these towns and villages for great pubs, restaurants, tea/coffee shops and independent stores
1 Chiddingfold: This village finds itself in the rather blessed position of being able to offer its own high-class pub crawl. With The Crown, The Swan, The Mulberry and The Winterton Arms all excellent, you’re spoiled for choice. Then there’s the quaint Treacle’s tea shop and RG Young & Son butcher’s shop.
2 Chobham: Split into two parts, Chobham has one of the best restaurants around, Stovell’s, and some excellent pubs – many of which have been rejuvenated. The Four Horseshoes is almost next door to Stovell’s at the Burrow Hill Green end, while a walk through the village’s heart takes in the White Hart and the Sun Inn.
3 Dorking: You can’t move for the foodie inspiration in Dorking! Arguably Surrey’s top chef, Steve Drake is set to open his new restaurant, Sorrel, in the town this summer. Then there are proactive independents like The Dorking Butchery, The Gin Kitchen, Cobbetts Real Ale, The Vineyard, Red Bar, Two Many Cooks, Dorking Deli and… we’re running out of room. Oh, plus Denbies Wine Estate, which is home to Surrey Hills Brewery and Village Greens farm shop!
4 East Molesey: A stone’s throw across the Thames from Hampton Court Palace, you can lose yourself among prime restaurants like Mezzet and Mezzet Dar, Petriti’s and Le Petit Nantais. There’s not one but two butchers, with Bentleys and PJ Dale, The Vineking wine shop and Cavan bakery. Thyme by the River at the cricket club is a great option on a sunny day.
5 Farnham: There are few more spectacular settings for a food festival than Farnham’s Castle Street, which transforms every September – one for the diary. For little gems, try Downing Street Deli, Lion & Lamb Café, Borellis wine bar, Wrights off licence and the two Loaf bakeries. The Wheatsheaf and its ‘secret garden’ in the town centre is a great stop off for a relaxed tipple.
6 Guildford: Things change very quickly in Guildford but it seems that tapas and Italian are here to stay as the order of the restaurant day – there are some cracking offerings in town too, and too many pubs to mention. If you’re picking up something to take home, then Guildford Farmers’ Market, Corkage (wine), Partisan (cheese and deli), and Inn at Home (beer) are good starting points.
7 Oxted: They certainly like to get people together in Oxted, with a feast of food and drink festivals and markets capturing the imagination. The brilliant Oxted Beer Festival has turned into something of a mini-Glastonbury! Make sure to check out Hop Stop beer shop, Robert and Edwards butchers and Toast café, as well as Cattle & Cocktail and Cucina restaurants, while in town.
8 Reigate: While La Barbe and Tony Tobin @ The Dining Room remain the leading independent restaurant lights, they’re surrounded by a number of proactive foodie entrepreneurs, such as The Vineking (two wine boutiques), Cullenders (a kitchen and deli), TEA (a tea shop!), Robert and Edwards (a butcher’s) and Monty Bojangles (a truffle bar!).
9 Ripley: Whether you’re looking for fine dining at The Clock House, a leisurely supper at The Talbot Inn, an evening tipple from Cellar Wines, something fresh from Ripley Farmers’ Market or a chat over coffee at Pinnock’s Coffee House or Nest, this is a village that punches well above its weight.
10 Woking: Boasting Tante Marie Culinary Academy, the UK’s longest-established cookery school, and its innovative restaurant; Market Walk, a purpose built state-of-the-art covered foodie-led market; and the multi-award winning Woking Food & Drink Festival, it’s no surprise Woking has got people talking. That’s before the unique independents like Cellar Magneval wine bar.
Vote for your local foodie favourites in the 2017 Surrey Life Food & Drink Awards