The G-Spot Awards

So it's time for the G-Spot awards ('Grumpy Spotlight' before your mind wanders too far) for great service & experiences that I think should be recognised and that other people should be aware of.

The Waterside Inn (
Quite simply possibly the finest dining experience in the world - 3 Michelin Stars doesn't being to explain the levels of culinary excellence that the Roux family provide here. The attention to detail, customisation, personal attention of Alain, superb wine list and amazing service make eating here a lifetime experience that has to be done as regularly as possible.

The Fat Duck (
Less than 0.5mile from The Waterside Inn is the 3 Michelin Star restaurant that has been repeatedly voted as the best in the world. Ignore the hype, leave your inhibitions, enjoy the small & intimate location (groups of 6 are the maximum allowed), take a table for the night, trust the staff and have a fantastic experience.

Midsummer House (
Cambridge's superb 2 Michelin Star restaurant run by Daniel Clifford - great food and fully recommended, just make sure your driver knows how to get there as the last mile is tricky! :)

The Vineyard at Stockcross (
As the name would suggest it's got a decent enough wine cellar, and the food by Daniel Galmiche is great - ask for the circle table in the raised area near the piano. If you're good you'll then have your own 'jukebox' as the pianist takes requests :)

Gordon Ramsay At Claridge's (
A slight let-down compared to the other restaurants on this list (service was poor and food only 'ok') - but the cocktails at the entry bar area were superb :)

Le Manoir Aux Quat'Saisons (
Superb Oxfordshire 2 Michelin Star restaurant run by Raymond Blanc - slightly more formal than some but fully recommended.

The Crab at Chieveley (
A great & highly rated fish restaurant & pub in Berkshire, wonderful food and a good collection of individually tailored rooms should you explore too much of the bar.

Tuddenham Mill (
The place in the world we chose to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary a few years ago, I have mixed minds about sharing the details of this place - as it's superb but I want to keep it to myself! :)

Sir Charles Napier pub (
The pub regarded as founding the 'gastro pub' movement, based in stunning gardens in rural Oxfordshire the food is sublime, the setting perfect and the wine list is pretty good too. Food better than many London Michelin star places, but with a great elegant family run atmosphere.

Hand & Flowers pub (
1 2 Michelin Star, UK AA pub restaurant of the year 2011/12, in Marlow, Buckinghamshire - brilliant food, fantastic staff & service and great value. 4-6 weeks needed for booking - but well worth it. Take a friend and share the competition winning Hog Roast, fantastic stuff.

Penny Hill Park - chef's table (
Such great fun eating & drinking fine creations - but even better when you're smack in the middle of it all being created. Take 6-8 good friends, stay overnight or have a driver, and take the wine flight to accompany the daily tasting menu - a superb experience, and I hope you enjoy the 'Alice in wonderland' secret door :)

Waddesdon Manor Five Arrows (
A great restaurant now managed by the National Trust, showing it's heritage in the Rothschild family and grounds, and of course access to a superb wine cellar - our regular haunt...

The Hemple (
A great boutique London hotel away from the beaten track, just remember to have somebody else pick up the bill! :)

Camel Valley Vineyard, Cornwall (   @CamelWineMaker)
Great vineyard & winery with some fantastic British wines. I can fully recommend the 3 dry white wines 2010 Camel Valley Silver Medal Bacchus, Atlantic Silver Medal Dry & Darnibole Bacchus (Gold Medal) - all world class.

Nathan Outlaw - Seafood & Grill (   @SeafoodAndGrill)
Brilliant food, great service & location in the tiny estuary village of Rock. The "Beetroot Cured Salmon, Horseradish Cream & Treacle Bread" is utterly sublime, and the "Whole Grilled Lemon Sole, with optional Anchovy & Tarragon Butter" perfect - just beware the size of the chips! :)

Rick Stein - Padstow
Well you can't go to Padstow in Cornwall without experiencing something to do with Rick Stein and his seafood empire. We fully recommend the superb 'Seafood Restaurant' ( for the finest seafood in the UK, fantastic every time. But don't ignore his great Bistro ( with it's cosy & intimate rooms and great food and welcoming for the whole family. Lastly who could go to the seaside without fish & chips? ( - but remember if you want to eat in get there early as there's a big queue!

Harbour Fish & Chips, St Ives Cornwall (
A very good quality fish & chip cafe & takeaway - everything cooked fresh to order, with lots of different fish & cooking options, perfect location next to the RNLI station in the harbour. Great holiday lunchtime seaside food!

Porthcurno Telegraph Museum, Cornwall (   @ThePTM )
Where the first true global communications started in the 1800s, beautiful location and beach combined with the full history of long distance communications technology - if you've not been here you're not a techie, geek  or nerd! ;) Fully recommended for techies, engineers, families and beach lovers....

Armourgeddon Tank Paintballing (
Yup, 17tonne battle tanks, 3 people teams (driver, gunner, loader) and 40mm paintball gun barrels, and you're let loose in a field to drive and fire at each other - possibly the best fun you can have with your clothes on (although don't wear too much as it's bloomin hot inside the tanks)

TopCats Racing - TVR (
If you're one of the lucky ones of us with a TVR car (or other high performance car or race car) then these guys are great - they've serviced my Chimaera for the last 8 years and been absolutely brilliant. Warren, Charlotte & Brian run a great outfit, with vast experience & knowledge, sensible minds and fully recommended.

LiveScribe (
A big thanks to @JoeBaguley for introducing me to simply the best note taking and workday tool I've ever experienced. Battery lasts weeks, memory lasts years, searchable hand written notes linked to spoken audio - fantastic. Used daily and my 1 essential work tool.

I'll update this blog page as or when I'm fortunate enough to experience high quality :)