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“Outstanding food, service and value”
Review of Chapter One

Chapter One
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Ranked #2 of 162 Restaurants in Orpington
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $0 - $82
Cuisines: European, Contemporary
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Large groups, Special occasions
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Lunch, Breakfast, Reservations
Description: Behind the charming Tudor exterior is a bright, modern restaurant with top notch modern European cuisine. Chapter One has gained enthusiastic reviews from many major restaurant critics and happy plaudits from satisfied diners. Not to mention that it won AA restaurant of the year 2004 and comes along with four AA rosettes. The dining room is relaxed, spacious and comfortable, and the cooking superb. Start with something inventive, like homemade roast gnocchi with braised chestnut, pumpkin and lobster. Then do try the braised oxtail with pancetta bacon and parsnip puree - everyone raves about it. The wine list shows much care and attention too. You will leave feeling well-fed and well cared-for.
Orpington, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Outstanding food, service and value”
Reviewed August 16, 2013

I frequently go to this restaurant and I am never disappointed.
It offers consistently great food and brilliant personal service.
It has a pleasant buzz and despite its michelin rating, its not too stuffy.
This visit I had the fixed lunch time menu and was extremely impressed with it at every level.
£70 for two people including a bottle of wine and 12.5% service was the same price we paid for a one course meal with house wine at Cafe Rouge only a week earlier. Yet this is head and shoulders, leaps and bounds better (as you would expect).
The food was excellent and the service was outstanding. I would have no hesitation recommending lunch at this restaurant.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Janeclarke c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,297 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Hungarian first
  • Korean first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Orpington, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
27 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“A place for a special occasion”
Reviewed August 15, 2013

I love this restaurant, the chef didn't get his Michelin star for nothing! The food is great except for one time when I got a bone in my rabbit starter, but that's a minor thing in the scheme of things. If like me you don't have a lot of money then it can be expensive so we only go on special occasions, the majority of people that go however, clearly have money! You can get good deals at certain times though so it's worth registering for those.

They do have a private seating area upstairs that is available for private functions too

  • Visited October 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Amanda S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shoreham by Sea
Level 6 Contributor
235 reviews
105 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 364 helpful votes
“Simple but perfect food”
Reviewed August 13, 2013

I have been to this restaurant once before on a Sunday, and it was good but didn’t blow me away. However, I was up in Kent and my wife and I decided to try another lunch here, this time on a weekday. I have to say it absolutely blew us away! It was 2 Michelin star food, not one. True, what we had was simple, but I felt it superior to the Hand and Flowers in Marlow, which serves simple food just very well done, and it has 2 stars.

I had the steak. A ribeye that was so well cooked, so succulent, so flavoursome it now ranks as the best steak I’ve ever eaten. And as a frequent visitor the U.S. where they do excellent steaks I say that with some considerable experience.
I reckon this steak was done with the “egg” cooker that many restaurants are now buying. Basically it’s an egg shaped oven that you cook meat in, it holds in all the juices of the meat but smokes and cooks them at the same time. Please trust me – if you go to Chapter One have the ribeye. If you like steak you’ll spend several minutes in heaven!
My wife’s meal of belly of pork was sensational too.
The simplicity in our meals came from the accompaniments. The potato and side vegetables were served on a small side plate and were simple fare. Simple, but absolutely lovely, and I couldn’t fault any of it.

The long and short of it is this – this restaurant does their food simply, but brilliantly. I sometimes wonder whether this is not the best way to serve food. A recent experience of ours at Tom Aikens restaurant in Chelsea (see my review) where the food was a technical masterpiece but mostly rubbish in flavour seems to add to the weight of my argument.

Also, I found the staff here excellent and I quite like the décor, although the restaurant is not completely to my taste. But frankly who cares? With food this good I’d eat it in a cave.

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Teamtango
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Without Fault”
Reviewed August 13, 2013

When writing up a review one usually feels behoved to list the good alongside the bad. But I can’t think of anything bad to say about this restaurant. The food was to a very high standard. The service was just right, not in any way overbearing, yet also quick to respond when I indicated I required service. The meal was done just the way the good food should be, which is not over the top, but really good ingredients and several simple bold flavours that work well together. The ambience was perfect for a dinner with the wife. The cost was also reasonable, about double the cost of a standard Saturday meal out at a Zizzis or Ask, but then again this place is a lot more special and its worth going out half as frequently for twice the experience. Would probably still reserve Chapter One for special occasions but looking forward to the next birthday or anniversary to provide the excuse.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Dan_tr675
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sevenoaks, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
89 reviews
77 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“Just about very good but still has some minor service problems”
Reviewed August 11, 2013

Had A very pleasant lunch here today (Sunday). The food was good as always and generally great value. Our entire party were unanimous in their praise. All in all I would not hesitate to go again or to recommend it to anyone wishing to enjoy fine dining at a reasonable cost.
Given that we had a thoroughly good time it seems a little churlish to pick up on service problems. I commented on them in my last review and have experienced them on all my visits in recent years. There was a distinct improvement this time I was pleased to note. Briefly one waiter had a distinct whiff of BO not horribly so but certainly noticeable and in an establishment such as this,not acceptable. Finally on several occasions we had to top up our own wine glasses. No great hardship and the norm in many places but not in a Michelin starred fine dining establishment, even at lunchtime.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank J D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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