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The Waterside Inn

Ferry Road, BRAY, SL6 2AT

4 rosettes

An old English pub by the banks of the River Thames caught the eye of a pair of French brothers who had made their name in London, and in 1972 they opened the Waterside Inn. Over 40 years later and it is still in the family. We're talking, of course about the Roux family, and it is Alain, son of Michel, who has taken on the mantle here by the river. Alain Roux didn't just turn up and expect his birthright, far from it; several years spent working in France and even more working his way up through the ranks here have made him the ideal man to carry this iconic restaurant into the 21st century. And that's exactly what he's done, partly by not changing it, for the Waterside is a bastion of classic French cooking, a luxury address offering the highest level of service you're likely to find anywhere (three cheers for Diego Masciaga who leads the team with charm and assurance). Things get off to a very good start with the valet parking, which makes you feel rather special from the off. That sense of being special will stay with you the whole visit. Things get even better if the weather allows drinks and canapés on the terrace by the water, but even if you're kept indoors, rest assured all is comfort and joy. The cuisine is based around French classical ways as you might expect, but there are modern touches threaded seamlessly through, with luxury ingredients in abundance. If you choose to stick with the à la carte menu over the gastronomique or exceptionnel menus, you might start with langoustine soufflé with an accompanying cassoulet of langoustines scented with truffles, or ravioli and 'diablotins' of burgundy snails enriched with parsley and garlic, and served with a lemongrass-scented chicken bouillon. Move onto whole braised turbot partnered with lobster mousseline and a champagne and chive sauce, but note you'll need a willing accomplice for this one. Challandais duck is carved at the table with breath-taking precision (and served with a jus flavoured with Earl Grey tea and bergamot), or go for grilled rabbit fillets with celeriac fondant, glazed chestnuts and Armagnac sauce. Alain Roux is a master pâtissier, so prepare for a stunning dessert such as warm rhubarb soufflé. Prices are high, but that is no surprise (the valet parking was an early clue). The wine list, like everything else, is a thrilling and classy ride.

Further information

Tel: 01628 620691
Please quote 'The AA'.
Send an email

Open/closed

Days closed: Mon-Tue
Dates closed: 26 Dec-29 Jan
Sunday lunch available.

Restaurant information

Cooking type: French
Chef: Alain Roux
Number of seats: 75
Accessible for wheelchairs.
Steps for wheelchair: 1
No children under 12 yrs.
Parking available.

 

Restaurant price guide

2 Course lunch from: £49.50
3 Course lunch from: £62.00
A La Carte Dinner Main Course from: £53.00
Sunday lunch: £79.50-£160.00
Prices are for guidance only. Please check when booking for current rates.

 
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Directions

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M4 junct 8/9, A308 (Windsor) then B3028 to Bray. Restaurant clearly signed
Nearest station: Maidenhead

Local information for SL6 2AT

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