Waitrose has just revealed the UK's top restaurants - and they're surprisingly affordable

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Enjoying a leisurely dinner out is one of life's greatest pleasures.

A delicious meal, cooked just for you, in a relaxed setting, and with no washing up to do? Count us in!

Plenty of us enjoy a low-key pub lunch, or a quick, post-shopping dinner at a high-street chain. In fact, some of us may like to treat ourselves to an award-winning, - or even Michelin-starred - dinner if we're celebrating a special occasion, or are feeling particularly flush.

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But dining out on local or international fare can quickly become a pricey business, and that's before you even get to some of the more higher-end establishments the UK has to offer.

So ardent foodies will likely be delighted to hear that the newly released, official Waitrose & Partners Good Food Guide has given some of their top accolades to some brilliantly affordable restaurant options around the country.

Waitrose & Partners have selected The Mash Inn as their 'Restaurant of the Year', set within the rolling, rural Buckinghamshire countryside.

At the pub, the set lunch menu with three courses will set you back only £25, while the extensive Sunday lunch menu is priced at just £45 - a brilliant price for an award-winning establishment!

Winning 'Best New Entry' UK-wide is The Woodsman in Stratford-upon-Avon. On the sample menu, guests can enjoy the deer shoulder for just £24.50, a Cornish cod main for £23, or chicken thighs for £17.50. When you consider a trip to you local Italian could cost roughly the same, it seems quite the bargain...

And scooping the prize for Best New Entry in London is Peg in Hackney, which again offers three course options for less than £30. They serve small Japanese inspired plates, and the sunny decor is guaranteed to put a smile on your face.

The guide’s editor Elizabeth Carter explained to Metro.co.uk that the British public are simply after more affordable picks these days.

She said, "With diners increasingly looking for flexible eating options and value for money, there has been a surge in inexpensive cafes and restaurants that rank quality of ingredients above all else."

So which other restaurants were rated the highest across the UK?

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L'Enclume in Cumbria took the top spot in the Good Food Guide's list of top 50 restaurants for 2020. With 2 Michelin stars, it's expensive (£180 for two people), but apparently, well worth it.

Core by Clare Smyth is second, offering delicious high-class fare in Notting Hill, with Cornwall-based seafood restaurant Restaurant Nathan Outlaw coming next.

Ynyshir in Powys, Wales, is fourth, Moor Hall in Lancashire is fifth, and Claude Bosi at Bibendum, West London, is sixth.

Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay's restaurant, Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, in West London, is seventh on the list, with a range of different menus including a vegetarian menu, seasonal menu, lunch and a la carte menu.

Coming in at number eight Restaurant Sat Bains in Nottinghamshire, ninth is Casamia in Bristol, and number ten is Pollen Street Social in Mayfair.

Amy Hunt

Amy Hunt is an experienced digital journalist specialising in homes, interiors and hobbies. She began her career working as the features assistant at woman&home magazine, before moving over to the digital side of the brand where she eventually became the Lifestyle Editor up until January 2022. Amy won the Digital Journalist of the Year award at the AOP Awards in 2019 for her work on womanandhome.com.