Located in the old town of Amersham in Buckinghamshire, Michelin-starred Artichoke is owned and led by Chef Patron Laurie Gear and his wife Jacqueline. They opened the restaurant originally in 2002 with the aim of providing the very best neighbourhood dining experience, a feat largely undertaken by chef patron Laurie Gear and head chef Chris Chegwin. While Laurie runs the kitchen team, Jacqueline oversees the day-to-day management of Artichoke with a strong background in business.
The restaurant is set inside a 16th century Grade II listed building with many of its original features left intact inside. The style, however, is slightly different to its historic foundations, with the interiors designed by Fiona Johnston Parke in a Scandi-chic style. Drawing on Laurie’s time spent in Scandinavia, expect lots of soft tones of walnut, grey and lilac, with finishing touches including amethyst glass and hand-crafted pottery.
The menu is modern European in style and uses top quality ingredients that are locally sourced and hyper-seasonal. For dinner, there is only one nine-course tasting menu available while for lunch there is a slightly shorter lunch set menu, ‘Artichoke’ menu or the tasting menu. There are also vegetarian equivalents of all the above. Most start with chiltern ale black bread with malt vinegar and cultured butter while other signature dishes might include mushroom tortellini with fennel, carrot, golden enoki and trumpet mushrooms, roast cornish cod with clams, crisp potato, clam and chervil sauce as well as goosnargh duck breast with duck leg croquette, leek puree and blood orange. On the sweet front, guests are treated to apple tarte tatin with Somerset apple brandy caramel and vanilla ice cream.
To drink, there is an international wine list that is broken down by region and can be ordered by the glass, half bottle or bottle.