CORE by Clare Smyth

4.9
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1249 reviews
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£41 and over
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British
Chef Clare Smyth’s first restaurant, Core by Clare Smyth, opened its doors August 2017.

Located in London’s Notting Hill at 92 Kensington Park Road, Core by Clare Smyth is a modern fine dining restaurant with a strong British ethos, in an elegant, relaxed interior.
What 1249 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.9based on recent ratings
4.9
food
4.9
service
4.9
ambience
4.6
value
Noise · Moderate
98% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
Las Vegas
15 reviews
Dined a day ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Absolutely delightful experience. The eye contact and friendly conversations from the whole staff was so refreshing. This is the least stuffy, amazing dining experience you could ever have. Loved how Clare stopped and greeted us as we walked by the open kitchen. The interior design, table settings and glass ware couldn’t be more beautiful. The food was a 10+. Even though we had high expectations they were exceeded by far. If we can ever get another reservation when we are in London we will be there! Don’t miss a chance to experience Core! 🌟🌟🌟

GV
London
7 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great experience. Fantastic food, attentive staff, great atmosphere and a thoroughly enjoyable experience.

MM
London
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was fabulous!!

Food, service everything about it was superb

JW
Kent
4 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Exceptional food - the best ingredients treated with an extraordinary level of skill and served with professionalism and flair. Each visit to Core brings new pleasures. A truly wonderful place. Just go, and hang the cost - just buy fewer other things fir a while...

KH
Buckinghamshire
7 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Absolutely fantastic meal. The service from all the staff was spot on. A very special treat but it was the best meals I have ever had.

c
London
6 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Exceptional in all respects - very enjoyable and without fault, and not too expensive

JG
1 review
Dined on 16 October 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Food was really good from start to end. Definitely value for money as well! Some dishes were a tad salty but thats bordering on nitpicking. Wine pairing was spendid and well explained.

AL
London
1 review
Dined on 15 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Congratulations to chef Clare Smyth! One of the best food experiences I’ve ever had. Creative and delicious food, friendly staff in a lovely ambience. Perfect!

RR
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 11 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing restaurant, food and service. A new favourite

M
London
20 reviews
Dined on 11 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Superb, innovative food in a comfortable, luxurious but unpretentious atmosphere. A little too much water pouring and waiter buzz for my liking, but the food was amazing. Made me smile to see the pleasure of the chefs and servers, clearly taking pride in their creations. Hope to come again, but reservations are not easy.

JJ
1 review
Dined on 11 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Whilst I think, much like beauty, value on these type of meals is in type of meals is in the eye/wallet of the beholder the rest of the scores I've given are simply not in doubt.

It was a real experience, guided past the kitchen where Clare greets you and then taken to the room where it all begins. Wonderful snacks (a chicken wing component has now ruined chicken wings for me forever) and then into a tasting menu that delivered superb flavours consistently. Lovely wine pairings and ultimately a great experience. And lovely to have a chat with Clare on the way out too. The wine flight ensured I can't totally remember the details of it, but I remember being enthusiastic.

it seems silly to recommend this place, you know it's going to deliver, you know you want to go. Can the wallet take it? Only you can answer that. We decided ours could, because our child has eaten well up to now and she can probably go at least a month without food.

OT
London
1 review
Dined on 10 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing food and great services!

e
London
2 reviews
Dined on 8 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing ambiance, food is superb and I really cannot wait to return.

CM
Hawaii
2 reviews
Dined on 5 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

CORE is fantastic! Food is same time simple and full of different flavours, service is attentive. Great place for special celebrations

SS
London
2 reviews
Dined on 5 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Core made my celebration for my Daughters 40th birthday so special. It was a superb experience from start to finish. Thank you

SY
London
2 reviews
Dined on 5 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Booked Core for our wedding anniversary. The food and service was just amazing and we got to meet Clare herself who wished us a happy anniversary which was a very touch to end the meal.

I would highly recommend Core to anyone.

DM
London
5 reviews
Dined on 4 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Was one of the best meals I have ever had. Absolutely brilliant and will remember for a long time.

OT
London
2 reviews
Dined on 4 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fantastic. For a big birthday, I had plenty of options for the very best food travelling into London, but Clare did not disappoint. The service matched the food - and Clare took the time to welcome diners passing her glass fronted kitchen, had chefs introduce the first course and said goodbye as we and other diners left. 10/10

IB
1 review
Dined on 4 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

a place for a special lunch, staff were engaging and friendly, chefs waved to us when we came in which was a lovely touch, they all seemed pleased to see us.

P
London
1 review
Dined on 4 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was a fabulous experience from start to finish! Every course was a delight - cleverly put together, beautifully presented and a treat for the tastebuds! The wine pairing was spot on. The staff were knowledgeable and attentive. Faultless.

P
Atlanta
5 reviews
Dined on 4 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Perfect meal. Simply the best dining experience I’ve had in a very long time.

OT
1 review
Dined on 3 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I have a favourite quote usually saved for those special culinary moments which leave me speechless, mesmerised and in total awe, plus I like what the wording conjures up ...
“Every now and then you get a vision of the new and exciting uplands where taste ricochet around the tastebuds and flavours hum and sing like a barbers shop quartet.” Each time I visit Core I find everything and I do mean everything is like being part of a finely tuned performance engine.
Subtle without being pretentious, beautiful but not soulless and effortless without being glib. Clare and Jonny’s BOH team provide a lesson in absolute perfection where your tastebuds are teased, entertained and delighted. A majestic engine room purring with culinary skill, control and the upmost attention to detail in every way.
On this visit Gareth and the FOH team were as always that magical balance of attentive but not intrusive. Inviting without being over familiar and a delight in wine paring advice which was both educational and absolutely spot on. I cannot fault Core or what Clare and her team send out to enthral you. It is cooking at its finest and with utter perfection from the hands and imagination of a truly special chef. This, in my opinion is the best food in London and I do not say that lightly. The restaurant celebrates the palate with harmony, humour and gawjussness which is a joy and feast for the eye and a spectacular treat for the tastebuds. The service and execution alone to maintain the dizzying and impeccable standards they provide along with everything else going on in this place is astonishing. I cannot praise the staff enough either as their whole attitude, aptitude and talent is a joy to be around. Another great experience and I cannot wait for a new season menu to emerge so we can submerge ourselves once again, into this cornucopia of beautiful abandon.
Spk

OT
Cambridge
1 review
Dined on 3 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Outstanding flair. Probably the best experience in Britain.

JH
London
1 review
Dined on 3 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Still the best food experience and restaurant in London. Well done Clare

OT
London
4 reviews
Dined on 3 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing! Everything you’d expect from 2 Michelin Stars ... and more! Yum, Yum, Yum!

H
Birmingham
5 reviews
Dined on 3 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Quote simply one of the best meals we have ever had. The three key ingredients for a successful restaurant are quality of the food, ambience, and service. Clare and her team have nailed it. Perfection which made our anniversary an even more special memory. Thank you all

SW
Toronto
1 review
Dined on 3 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Brilliant service, truly bespoke. They learned that we were in celebrating our honeymoon and just added a few touches to make the meal special. It is much more relaxed than most fine dining restaurants and this added to the enjoyable experience. I was very grateful that the dessert course had just as much care and thought devoted to it as the savoury courses. It is a rare thing and highly appreciated! The highlight was meeting the Chef and team. I currently work as a CDP in pastry and getting a tour of the kitchen and team made my day. I was incredibly awkward and fan girling being in such an immaculate and tight kitchen, but the chefs must be used to that. Epitome of cool.

OT
Boise
1 review
Dined on 2 October 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Superb performance, highly recommend!

OT
Melbourne / VIC
9 reviews
Dined on 1 October 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 5

Understandable reputation for the food, but wish the restaurant would relax. Everything done with precision but with manic service. Very little engagement with front of house - who mostly ran around the restaurant at a speed of knots. I think we had more than 10 individuals serving at different points, but no real interest in us. On a positive note - a spectacular snd well thought out wine match. One of the best.

OT
London
1 review
Dined on 28 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food. Every dish was so deep full of flavour. And we got to meet chef Clare Smyth.

JN
London
14 reviews
Dined on 28 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Incredible food and service - lovely atmosphere. Perfect for a special occasion

OT
London
1 review
Dined on 28 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful to finally make it to Core. The service was faultless, the food exquisitely prepared. The ambience is pleasantly smart - casual. The core classics tasting menu was superb. Classic food with a modern twist.

s
London
6 reviews
Dined on 28 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing food a real experience

SM
London
1 review
Dined on 27 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My boyfriend and I went to CORE for a pre-birthday dinner and it was fabulous! It's a true dining experience and was a wonderful way to celebrate. We both had tasting menus although I tried the Seasons which I loved; his was amazing as well. The service was faultless and the ambiance was lovely. I was especially intrigued by the ability to view the chefs in the kitchen due to a wall composed entirely of glass.
Overall it was an evening to remember and we loved every minute!

JR
Buckinghamshire
1 review
Dined on 27 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We visited recently with friends for lunch and had been looking forward to it for 91 days!! We were not disappointed. We were given a table that gave 2 of us a view of the kitchen, which was fascinating. The food was amazing and the wines too that went with our tasting menu. Not for the faint hearted money wise though!

LS
London
1 review
Dined on 27 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

An amazing lunch with fantastic service. Cannot fault it at all. Beautiful surroundings and the food was out of this world!

ST
London
3 reviews
Dined on 26 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

This was my fourth time at Core and the Food & Services are always on another level to any other restaurant.

AG
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on 26 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything was impecable!

p
London
16 reviews
Dined on 26 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Impeccable execution, happy staff, food of the highest quality, Clare Smyth deserves 3 Michelin Stars.

L
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 26 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

As a vegetarian curious of what the best fine-dining restaurants have to offer to the non-meat eating population, Core was a surprising and refreshing experience. The vegetarian tasting menu, but Chef Smyth's vision as a whole for her food, truly delivered.

Unlike previous experiences in Michelin-starred restuarants, the veg tasting menu in no way felt secondary to the 'regular' menu (my friend ordered the seasonal tasting). However, this was my first Michelin-grade veg experience where a dish with TRUFFLE appeared only ONCE - which, to my mind, is an achievement! (And, thank god, no risotto as 'the' main course.)

The menu consisted instead of dishes featuring fresh domestic British ingredients (e.g., potatoes, peas, onions, corn, girolle mushrooms -- to name a few) whose flavours absolutely shined in each and every dish; humble vegetables elevated to undoubted Michelin quality, and, in its presentation, quite simply visually stunning.

Core is a refreshing move away from French-style techniques. Not a single pureed item on either tasting menus ordered that day, nor any oddly 'ice creamed' savoury food, like peas or scallops. Core's food, evidently, doesn't trade on cute concepts but by elevating fresh domestic ingredients (without overwhelming the pallette with too many flavours) and presenting them on a range of beautiful and tastefully selected serving dishes. Visually stunning, non-pretentious, simple and absolutely delicious food.

This review wouldn't be proper without mentioning the excellent service. We were greeted to smiling staff from the beginning until the end. We asked our waiter whether Chef Smyth was in-house today, and he informed us that she hadn't arrived yet due to a meeting. When she did arrive, we were kindly notified of her presence and later were invited to meet her in the kitchen before she departed at the end of lunch service. As fans of her from her television appearances, it was truly a special touch to an already delightful experience!