Best restaurants in Exeter and east Devon

From the hilly fringes of Dartmoor to the lush Exe Valley and the Jurassic coastline, the Devon capital and the surrounding area is rich in incredible produce. Peruse our pick of the best restaurants in Exeter and east Devon to sample these glorious local ingredients

Winslade Manor Bar & Restaurant

Winslade Manor, Exeter

Nestled amid 86 acres of stunning parkland, 19th-century Winslade Manor exudes understated luxury and is an idyllic setting for any occasion. Award-winning executive chef Matt Mason specialises in British cuisine executed with contemporary flair.

Enjoy a casual alfresco lunch with family and friends on the terrace, sip a signature cocktail in the modern bar or indulge in the seven-course tasting experience in the characterful dining room.

The Salutation Inn

The Salutation Inn, Topsham

A historic port on the winding River Exe, pretty Topsham is just off the M5 and super convenient for a gourmet getaway.

The Salutation Inn has served patrons since 1720, first as a pub and now, under Tom and Amelia Williams-Hawkes, as a refined dining destination. The à la carte and tasting menus have a piscatorial leaning (check out the in-house wet fish deli, Salt) but also showcase some of the region’s finest meat and veg producers.

The Galley Restaurant

The Galley, Topsham

The catch of the day takes pride of place at this award-winning restaurant within a delightfully crooked 18th-century townhouse. Head chef Jack Harvey honed his craft working in London at various establishments run by Marcus Wareing. His bold, clean flavours have earned The Galley an array of accolades, including a Michelin Bib Gourmand. The wine list is extensive, and the cheeseboard epic.

The NoBody Inn, Doddiscombsleigh, Exeter

The NoBody Inn, Doddiscombsleigh

This charming 17th-century inn is tucked away on the edge of Haldon Forest, yet despite its remote location it’s well worth seeking out for its crowd‑pleasing cuisine and standout list of 240 whiskies and 30 wines by the glass.

Expect elevated pub dishes crafted with local ingredients such as venison from Dartmoor and fish from the Devon coast. The beer garden is popular in summer, but The NoBody Inn comes into its own during the winter months when its low ceilings, roaring log fires and soft candlelight offer respite from the cold.

Lympstone Manor

Lympstone Manor, near Exmouth

Named Best Dining Experience in the UK at the Condé Nast Johansens Awards for Excellence 2023, and retaining its five AA rosettes and Michelin star again this year, Lympstone Manor is chef Michael Caines’ modern take on the country house hotel.

Dine in one of three exquisite rooms named after the estuary views: Powderham, Mamhead and Berry Head. An impressive wine list includes Lympstone Manor Cuvée, pressed from grapes grown on the 11-acre vineyard in the grounds.

Mickeys Beach

Mickeys Beach, Exmouth

Lympstone Manor’s relaxed younger sibling, Mickeys Beach is a laid-back, family-friendly restaurant and bar designed to encapsulate the social joy of informal seaside dining. Downstairs is a large bar area with an informal menu (dogs welcome); upstairs, a seaview restaurant ideal for a romantic meal or celebratory occasion. The menu ranges from superior burgers and pizzas to the Sunday special: Mickeys Roast on the Coast.

Dishes at Saveur in Exmouth

Saveur, Exmouth

Just off Exmouth’s main square, Saveur delivers Parisian bistro vibes in a traditional British seaside setting. Chef-owner Nigel Wright’s modern, seasonal dishes have seen the restaurant retain its two AA rosettes for six years.

Nigel’s daily changing menus have a leaning towards seafood thanks to his hotline to the fishmongers at Brixham Fish Market. The restaurant is just a 30-minute train ride from Exeter, meaning you can peruse the restrained but impressive wine list at leisure.

The Riviera Hotel and Restaurant, Sidmouth

The Riviera Hotel and Restaurant, Sidmouth

Regency splendour, English seaside views and smart two-AA-rosette dining are the calling card of the Grade II-listed Riviera Hotel and Restaurant on Sidmouth’s esplanade. Chef Patrice Bouffaut offers a modern British menu that stays close to home with dishes such as roast rack of Devon lamb and steamed paupiette of lemon sole.

Book a tastefully furnished bedroom for the evening and explore Sidmouth, described by poet laureate John Betjeman as ‘a town caught still in timeless charm’.

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june, 2024


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