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“Well deserved Michelin Star for self taught chef” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Raby Hunt Restaurant

The Raby Hunt Restaurant
Summerhouse, Darlington, England
01325 374237
Website
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Ranked #1 of 208 Restaurants in Darlington
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Cuisines: British
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Entertaining clients, Local cuisine, Doing business, Special occasions, Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Reservations
England
Top Contributor
94 reviews 94 reviews
50 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
102 helpful votes 102 helpful votes
“Well deserved Michelin Star for self taught chef”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 15, 2012

At last james - congratulations. We love your enthusiasm translated into creating very tasty dishes. well done indeed. We are sure Mum & dad are very proud and we are very happy the Raby is on our doorstep..

    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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305 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    265
    33
    5
    1
    1
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
York, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
63 helpful votes 63 helpful votes
“Almost perfect”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2012

We came here having read the reviews and having hear they had just got a Michelin star. Considering we live only 13 miles away, its amazing we'd never been.

We arrived to find water pouring out of the kitchen via hoses and I wondered what was going on and had some trouble finding the entrance at first and then wondered whose idea the fairy lights in the tree were, because they made the place look a bit...tacky.

However, we entered and sat in the lounge area and were served an appetiser which was a really nice touch. We went for the taster menu, which though expensive, promised to give us a little of everything. I would warn that the tasting menu is a full evening's dining, so dont expect to be in and out. We were there about 4 hours all told. I'd also warn that the portions were not large and it was only at the very end of the meal that I was feeling that I wouldnt need to stop at McDonalds on the way home. We did eat quite a lot of bread...The tasting menu changes frequently as well.

The food was exquisite...although the portions were small, they were delicious. My partner loved every course and I can still taste them now. I wasn't that keen on the hare and fillet tartar, but thats because I dont like raw meat or hare. That said, I tried it. Service was excellent, though could have been improved upon. It wasnt quite there and at times we felt a little forgotten. It would have been nice for our wine to be poured or more water to be brought without asking. Things like that.

The thing that almost loses it a mark is the decor. Some things just do not work. The fairy lights in the tree, the cheap plastic lid on the toilet, the hand written note saying "loos" and the printed our piece of paper stuck on the wall selling art work. These are just things you dont expect to see in a high class restaurant and the same level of attention to detail needs to be made in the decor as is quite obviously made to the food.

Tasting menu for 2 with a bottle of wine and three acohol free beers and service came to £175, so it was very expensive. It was worth it, but I was not full when I left and the decor and service could have been better. However, the food was outstanding, so I felt it worthwhile, but be aware its expensive and the portions are small.

  • Visited October 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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North East
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Hidden Gem”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 7, 2012

I have been lucky enough to enjoy two meals at The Raby Hunt in the last few weeks, my last visit was the same week they were awarded a Michelin Star which is very well deserved. The food and service is exceptional. We were a party of 12 and had a very warm welcome indeed and throughout our meal we were cosseted by the staff, nothing was too much trouble. The menu has been very well thought out. My husband and I chose the ox cheek to start, the flavour of which was intense, we both 'wowed' this at the same time - fantastic! The roast pork came with really crispy crackling and crunchy roast potatoes with plenty of fresh seasonal vegetables. The rice pudding was really creamy and delicious but I must recommend the chocolate bar dessert that I had last time I went there - heaven on a plate. This restaurant is well worth the trip to this quiet village. It also has rooms so you can extend your experience of this hidden gem.

  • Visited September 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Summerhouse
2 reviews
“A well deserved Michelin star . .”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 28, 2012

The Raby Hunt sets the bar very high - as you would expect from a Michelin starred establishment. Once you have experienced the wonderful food and special hospitality, nowhere else locally comes close. James the Chef puts together a wonderfully seasonal menu with local produce where appropriate, and produces simply divine dishes with a twist ! Every course you receive from the canapes and amuse bouche through to dessert is a culinary delight. The front of house staff are attentive and knowledgeable without being obtrusive. If you appreciate fine dining, book a table at The Raby - I'm sure it will surpass your expectations. We feel so lucky to have this gem on our doorstep !

  • Visited September 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Darlington
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Excellent food, service and surroundings at the Raby Hunt”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 26, 2012

I went for Sunday lunch to the Raby Hunt. Summerhouse with a party of 7, we had to wait a couple weeks to get a table but it was worth it! Very friendly and professional welcome upon arrival, attentive staff who made the time to talk despite being busy, beautiful country-chic decor. The food was superb thanks to chef James Close. We all had a 3 course sunday lunch. I ordered pigeon for starter which was cooked to perfection- i was very impressed by this as pigeon is often dry when not cooked properly, for main i had beef with all the trimmings you would expect- fantastic roast potatoes, perfectly crisp and very tender melt-in-the-mouth beef. I have to say it was one of the best sunday roasts I have had! All presented to perfection too. For dessert I tried a bit of everyones- cheese board, rice pudding, cheesecake and sticky toffee pudding i think- all delicious! Would highly recommend...

  • Visited April 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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