My favourite restaurants: Jack Stein

Five restaurants that Jack Stein can’t help but go back to...

Updated on • Written By Alice Samuels

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My favourite restaurants: Jack Stein

The Stein name is famous for a reason - the family really know what they’re doing when it comes to food! Growing up with food famous parents and going on to make his own name in the industry, Jack Stein certainly knows his way around the kitchen, but who feeds the chef? Jack Stein has revealed a handful of his favourite restaurants in the UK, explaining how these restaurants get it so right.  


Cornish born Jack is the middle son of Rick and Jill Stein and he has had a similar passion for hospitality to his parents since the age of six, with a special place in his heart reserved for the kitchen. In his early days he worked as a kitchen porter and as front-of-house, until heading to Cardiff University to study Psychology, and a Masters degree in Ancient History. Whilst Jack’s head was studying, his heart was in the kitchen and he re-entered the family business as a commis chef at The Seafood Restaurant after graduating.

Jack has developed his skills globally and spent a lot of time traveling to Australia, the Far East and Japan. He is currently chef director for Rick Stein restaurants, and he's overseen a wealth of change within the group since 2017, including the launch of his own cookery course at the Rick Stein Cookery School and Stein’s at Home, which Rick leads on. His face might be familiar to you from his various TV appearances, including his time on ITV’s Cooking with the Stars as a mentor in 2021, 2022 and 2023.  

Interested to know where Jack likes to spend his time when he's out for a meal himself? Scroll down for five of his favourites.

Som Saa, London  

thai cooking at som saa

Jack says: 'This is my favourite Thai restaurant in the UK. Head Chef Andy Oliver previously worked in Thailand and he knows his flavours, they are incredible. I’m addicted – if I fancy some Thai food and I’m anywhere near the city I will be getting on the tube! The cocktails and wine list are so clever, and the desserts are great too. Just typing this makes me want to go.'
Where: Spitalfields, E1 6BD 
Book Now: Som Saa

The Gurnards Head, St Ives 

cosy dining room at the gurnard's head

Jack says: 'This is my favourite pub in the country, its down in the deep west of Cornwall where the moorland meets the sea. There is folk music on a Monday, singing old Cornish songs and the weather can come in so quickly. The food is always good, local, simple and ever changing. The thing that I like the most is the way that the place makes you want to want to stay the night, which you can because they have rooms too!'
Where: Zennor, TR26 3DE 
Book Now: Gurnard’s Head

Ondine, Edinburgh

dish at ondine edinburgh

Jack says: 'Roy Brett was my first ever Executive Chef at The Seafood Restaurant in Cornwall when I started as a commis, and I still use so many things he taught me. He moved back home to Scotland and opened Ondine. It has the best selection of Scottish seafood and langoustines, and his food is simple but precise. Cornwall’s loss was Edinburgh’s gain!'
Where: 2 George Iv Bridge, EH1 1AD  
Book Now: Ondine

The Lamb Shipton, Cotswolds 

dishes at the lamb shipton

Jack says: This pub is just the perfect Cotswold pub! Peter and Tom have imbued this space with everything that a pub should be. The menu is faultless, the wine list brilliant and the rooms are beautiful. My grandmother was from the nearby village of Burford, so this really is a trip down memory lane for me. I just wish it was open when she was alive, she would have loved it! 
Where: High St, Shipton Under Wychwood, OX7 6DQ 
Book Now: The Lamb Shipton

Quo Vadis, London

dining room at quo vadis

Jack says: 'Jeremy Lee is one of a kind, I love his food so much. This grande dame in the middle of Soho is such an icon, it keeps Soho going amongst the changes of the last decades. People watching inside is fantastic, there are real Soho characters, and this combined with Jeremy’s faultless food is something to cherish. To hear Jeremy’s voice in the back as he comes out into the dining room is one of life’s great pleasures, as is the menu – to read it always brings joy!' 
Where: 26-29 Dean Street, W1D 3LL 
Book Now: Quo Vadis 

Jack Stein has focused his international experiences into a cookbook, World on a Plate, so, if you like his restaurant suggestions you will no doubt appreciate the chance to recreate his other favourite dishes at home! 

If you would like to read more about other exceptional chefs and where they like to eat, check out restaurant recommendations from the likes of The Little Chartroom's Roberta Hall-McCarron and Quo Vadis supremo Jeremy Lee.  

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