The team from the Hassop Station Cafe
All you need to know about why these restaurants are so successful
These are simply some of the best places around to eat out. Here's why . . .
Best Family Friendly
Hassop Station Café
Conveniently located one mile outside of Bakewell on the Monsal Trail, Hassop Station Café is a fantastic stop-off for families after a leisurely trek or cycle. It’s quite a skill to satisfy the needs of every family member, but the café at Hassop has stepped up to the challenge.
Rebecca Stokes who runs the café with her husband Duncan said:
“We do a lot for children, but we do a lot of higher end stuff as well. People know they are going to get quality food for the whole family. Head chef Graham Mitchell and the team work really hard to give a good food offering.”
Best Gastro Pub
The Tickled Trout
The Tickled Trout is no stranger to success, having won the Reader’s Choice Award last year. They may be based further afield, but they have once again proven they are worth the journey to Barlow.
Owner Chris Mapp said: “I’m delighted for my team. Without them I’m nothing. Our success is down to their hard work. They’re all wonderful people – enthusiastic, energetic and devoted.
“Tom our manager helps run the ship, Frankie is my assistant, Lucy has been our bar supervisor since day one and Dave and our head chef Matthew have both worked their arses off to get us where we are today.”
Best Pub Grub
The Crown Inn at Totley
With five pubs in Barnsley and two in Sheffield, general manager Jack Hallsall knows from experience that when it comes to pub grub, it's all about providing old favourites at high standards.
Jack said: “We go back to basics. People get a warm welcome every time they come in and its proper, honest food. The plan is to carry on developing The Crown, growing it and making it a part of the community.”
Their head chef Jamie Oliver added: “It’s nice to have your efforts recognised. We take pride in what we do. I just think if you’re going to do something, do it right.”
Best Café/Light Bite
Though a self-confessed café, you are just as likely to enjoy a succulent steak in the evening, as a full English breakfast and a good cup of coffee in the morning – they also offer vegetarian alternatives. But that’s not the only stand-out thing about the café.
Owner Matthew Begley said: “We have a loyal customer base. The bistro nights are going great and we are now doing popup Peruvian, Mexican and Georgian nights and they’re always busy.
“We have guest chefs and the Mexican chef is quite keen to change everyone’s view of Mexican food – it’s not just tacos and burritos.”
Butlers Balti House and Ashoka
Our compère Howard Middleton put it best when he said, “The competition for this category was so hot, you couldn’t put a poppadom between them.” So for the first time in Westside Restaurant Award history, we have two winners for Best Indian – Butlers Balti House and Ashoka.
Though Ashoka recently had a refurbishment, they continue to celebrate tradition with their retro-styled restaurant.
Owner Rahul Amin said: “We’re really happy. It’s nice for the team to be recognised for all the hard work they have put in. We are 49 years old this year, so it’s a nice little gift before our 50th next year.
“I think great food, great ingredients and not taking any shortcuts is important. We always try and do the best job we can.”
Butlers Balti House has built up an outstanding reputation in the city centre over the past 19 years. This year they are planning to expand with the opening of a Chinese restaurant upstairs.
Owner and manager Sajid Quader said: “I started working at Butlers when it opened in 1997 and worked my way up. Some restaurants make dishes that all end up tasting the same.
“What makes us unique is that every dish is completely different. And we don’t just do Indian dishes. We cater for a wide range of tastes with Northern Punjab and Pakistani dishes too.”
The restaurant won Best Newcomer back in 2011 and since then, has gone from strength to strength. Patoo Thai continues to blend authentic cuisine and brilliant customer service.
Owner Jariya Sancunakorn was visiting family in Thailand, but her sister Mayuree Msigapong was happy to accept theaward on her behalf.
“She sends regards to all of you. We’ve had a refurbishment and have changed the colour of the interior for a new warmer look.
“We will now try to do more to promote our dishes and will offer a free meal for those who come to the restaurant to celebrate their birthday.”
Celebrating its 20th anniversary this month, Nonnas continues to be a firm favourite on Ecclesall Road, providing locals with everything from breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner, to a bustling wine bar. Combined with authentic Italian ingredients and an all-Italian wine list, Nonnas was the clear winner.
General manager Stefano Buralli said: “We try to stick with the Italian way. There’s always something new to try. It’s seasonal.
“We are always changing the food menus seasonally and we change the wine and cocktail lists once a year. And from January we are starting a new monthly special with food and wine from each region of Italy.”
Best Night Out
With a gorgeous bar and restaurant upstairs and plenty of room to place your bets on downstairs, Napoleons has the full package. Their mix of contemporary and globally-influenced dishes have really stepped up in the last few years and monthly menus ensure plenty of variety for regulars.
Catering manager Craig Allsop said: “The standard of food and the service we offer is high and our customers are always extremely happy when they leave. Obviously we do have the casino as well which adds to it.
“It appeals to all ages and all different kinds of people. We get a lot of celebrations – birthdays and anniversaries and it does seem to be a place where a lot of people like to come and celebrate.”
Best Hotel Restaurant
Brocco on the Park
Our judges weren’t giving a thought to calorie counting when they named Brocco on the Park Best Hotel Restaurant of the region, but owner Tiina Carr is determined to deliver delicious food with a healthy focus.
Tiina said: “We look at how we cook things to be cleaner and leaner. Eat well is our philosophy. We have imaginative chefs who care about what they do.
“We go for quality, we don’t skimp, we don’t serve things out of a packet and everything is made from scratch.”
The hotel was last year’s Best Newcomer and Tiina was delighted to be back.
“There were a lot of hotels in the category, so it really wasn’t expected. It’s nice to win again – maybe a hat-trick next year?”
Best Young Chef Runner-Up
Kamil Bajorek, West 10
Kamil Bajorek started at West 10 when he was 22, and after almost four years as a sous chef, became head chef in September 2015.
Owner Jonny Higginbottom said: “I think it’s absolutely amazing, I am so made up for him. What he does is amazing – all three of my chefs are amazing. I am extremely proud.”
Kamil added: “I appreciate that my talent has been recognised, but at the same time, it’s my team and the people who I work with, so I can’t take all the credit by myself. We have made a few changes, but I hope customers like my taste and the dishes we create.”
Best Young Chef Winner
Darren Utley, Cross Scythes
Not only is Darren Utley enjoying the kudos which comes with the award,
Cross Scythes boss Stuart Hitchman has doubled the £100 prize money to help kick-start his career.
Darren started by making pies and burgers in the kiosks of Sheffield United FC, before turning down a team leader role to pursue catering at Cross Scythes in May 2013.
Darren said: “I was nominated last year, so it’s spurred me on to be better this year. Since our head chef Simon Ayres came in, I’ve progressed much further, so thank you to him for helping me over the last year and a half.”
“Darren is a young and unique individual,” added Simon. “I’ve trained a lot of people and worked in a lot of kitchens and it’s very rare you get a genuinely nice chef who’s kind-hearted, willing to do the job and is successful at it as well.”
Rob Engledow and Deepak Jaiswal had always loved pizza, but it wasn’t until a trip to Napoli that the pair were inspired to set up shop.
You may have noticed their pizza wood burner ovens ‘popping up’ around the city, but to get the full Proove experience, it’s well worth visiting their restaurant in Broomhill.
Co-owner Rob said: “We’re very excited to have won. We do lots of weddings, festivals and we have some regular pop-ups – one in Dronfield and on in Chesterfield.
“I’ve always wanted to open a restaurant, but the pop-ups are a good way of getting your feet wet with less risk. Getting experience, staff and branding – it’s very exciting.”
With an overwhelming number of votes, this Crookes Italian is evidently adored by new and regular clientele alike.
Owner Salvo Ilardi was overjoyed to hear that he had won the approval of Westside readers.
“We are very surprised to win the award and it’s great to be the people’s choice. We are a genuine Italian restaurant and we are good at what we do.
“The secret to our success is that we have nice customers. At Casanova, we treat our customers as family. It’s for everyone – from young to older people.”
A loyal customer added: “We try other restaurants, but we always go back to Casanova.”