No doubt one of Brighton's most celebrated restaurants, The Little Fish Market is true to its name - a small, 20-cover restaurant, run by Duncan Ray, who cooks a single tasting menu with a heavy lean towards south coast fish and seafood. Ray has worked under the likes of Marco Pierre White, John Burton Race and Heston Blumenthal in his career, before striking out on his own in Brighton.
Since opening in 2013, The Little Fish Market has scooped a bevy of awards, including a place in the Good Food Guide, the Michelin Guide, the National Restaurant Awards Top 100 and three AA Rosettes. These days, Brighton boasts a rejuvenated restaurant scene, but The Little Fish Market was there right at the beginning, and alongside chefs like Michael Bremner and Steven Edwards, Ray has done a great deal to put Brighton on the national culinary map.
You'll find the restaurant just off the main road towards Hove, where its unnassuming double-front sits neatly next to The Old Market theatre. This old building used to be a fishmonger, hence the name, and though it has smartened up a bit it still retains that rustic charm. Though Ray has experience in some very fine dining establishments, his cooking at The Little Fish Market is more classic and restrained.
The single tasting menu shows off a variety of fresh fish and seafood - whatever is best on each day - cooked in a way that shows it at its very best. The dishes are described in very few words - think 'Brill', 'Scallop' and 'Bream' - to keep a sense of mystery and surprise behind each one. While the accompanying wine selection is ably curated by Noble Rot's Dan Keeling and Mark Andrew.