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Sushi restaurant seating nine is best dining experience in UK, says guide

The Araki beat Bristol’s Casamia and The Ledbury in London in the poll of thousands of diners for the Harden’s Best UK Restaurants guide.

A £385-a-head sushi restaurant in London is the best dining experience in the UK while Manchester is the fastest-improving city for food lovers, according to a respected guide.

The Araki in the capital’s Mayfair, which seats nine people and recently gained three Michelin stars, beat Bristol’s Casamia and The Ledbury in London in the poll of thousands of diners for the Harden’s Best UK Restaurants guide.

The guide named Manchester the fastest improving city, with 66 restaurants achieving a listing, although none made the top 100.

It described Edinburgh as “still unrivalled outside London” with 55 listings and 13 restaurants among the top scorers, including Restaurant Martin Wishart in ninth place, The Kitchin (47) and Norn (66).

Bath and Bristol climbed to joint seventh place from joint 11th position for their number of top scoring restaurants, while Wales achieved five rankings in the top 100.

The 27th annual list was based on a survey of 8,500 diners who contributed 50,000 reviews of their restaurant experiences.

The guide’s editor and co-founder Peter Harden said: “Manchester is one of the fastest-growing cities and on the back of that is coming the services you expect to see in a thriving city.

“On the other hand it doesn’t have the champions to make the top 100.

“Famously, Manchester has not had a Michelin star since 1977 at The French restaurant at the Midland Hotel.

“It still lacks the type of restaurant you really have to tick off your list.”

Mr Harden said The Araki’s success was down to its “fabulous level of attention and ingredient quality”.

“We often find that smaller restaurants do better because the chef can really focus on your meal and your experience.”

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