SquareMeal Review of
The Clock House Ripley
Famed as “the best restaurant in Surrey by miles”, The Clock House (formerly known as Drake's) occupies an imposing Georgian building that has been jazzed up with contemporary flounce and clean, modern lines. For years, it was synonymous with Steve Drake’s precise, boundary-pushing food, although he is no longer involved and the kitchen is now in the hands of his one-time sous-chef Fred Clapperton, who has succeeded in regaining the restaurant’s Michelin star. The dining room’s classic, yet contemporary look is unchanged, while the food revolves around a choice of menus and high-end combos ranging from Norfolk quail with fennel and ‘black curry’ to desserts such as rhubarb with buckwheat, ginger and sorrel. In between, there’s creativity in spades – witness a dish of beef with sweetbreads, kohlrabi and black trompette mushrooms or sea bass partnered by courgettes, basil and black olives. Fans say The Clock House is “consistently entertaining” and “outstanding every respect”, with “just fabulous” service and some “dangerously generous” wine pairings.
Wine List Of The Year
With wines split up by
style (‘Dry, Crisp and Refreshing’; ‘Aromatic and Floral’ for instance) and including helpful tasting notes and info on the grape varieties, The Clock House's list conveys an awful lot in a painless,
easy-to-follow fashion. Nice to see some local vineyards in there, but a few more suppliers wouldn’t go amiss. Shortlisted for the second year on the trot, The Clock House offers a lesson in clarity.