Photograph: Maureen Evans
We can all agree that London has an unrivalled array of cuisines from every corner of the globe with numerous examples of truly exceptional restaurants. Of course, you can find better Italian, French, Spanish and Scandinavian places in their countries of origin, but nowhere else has the diversity or range of what is on offer in London.
It is when you venture beyond the M25 that the situation changes for the worse, save for perhaps a couple of dozen establishments throughout the kingdom. Given this state of affairs, I am always encouraged when a talented chef closes shop in London and heads to Sussex or Somerset. This has occurred recently, with Tom Kemble leaving Bonhams restaurant to open The Pass in Horsham, Tracey Peterson and Paul Merrony from Giaconda to the Newell in Sherborne and more recently, Merlin Labron-Johnson at Osip in Bruton.