Award: One Michelin star and 3 AA Rosettes
Chef patron: Simon Bonwick – prior to The Crown, Simon was chef at The Three Tuns in Henley and has previously worked at the nearby Waterside Inn, the Fat Duck in the mid-90s, as well as with the late Bernard Loiseau in Burgundy. He has been cooking for the last 30 years!
Visit: 12 May 2019, lunch for two.
Review: Simon bought the freehold of The Crown at Burchetts Green in the Autumn of 2013. The pub is entirely family-run, Simon, his wife and their nine children all help where needed.
Simon works in the kitchen entirely on his own. The menu changes on a daily basis and there is a chalk board with the list of courses. Simon’s cooking is classic French. Perfectly cooked meat and fish, accompanied by delightfully turned vegetables, and stocks and demi-glaces reduced to a perfect richness. It is very clear that Simon cooks from the heart, producing the type of food that he loves.
The restaurant was awarded a Michelin star in the 2017 guide, which it has retained.
Service is presided over by Dean Bonwick, the eldest son. Dean has worked at the Waterside Inn for 6 years, for Tom Kerridge at the Hand and Flowers and at Les Pres de Eugenie (with Michel Guerard). He is very welcoming, attentive and knowledgeable.
We went for a Sunday lunch. We were warmly welcomed and enjoyed a drink at the bar. The atmosphere is relaxed and informal. There aren’t many restaurants that play music, but here I could hear Stan Getz playing softly in the background. The food was outstanding.
This is one of the best restaurant experiences I have had this year. The food is superb, we were made to feel very welcome and the service is excellent. And all of this is at a very reasonable price. I strongly recommend you go!!
The menu and food:
A very fine 1929 Bas Armagnac was the perfect finale: