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Chef Tim Anderson's Top Brighton Eats

portrait photo credit: Laura Edwards

Discover Chef Tim Anderson, owner of Nanban in Brixton and author of 4 cookbooks, favourite places to eat in Brighton after a foodie weekend away with his family. If Tim says it's good, then I believe him. In fact, the appetising photos he took on his travels were enough to spark the birth of this article. So visit Brighton and when you do, make sure to check out Tim's favourite spots. You won't regret it!

photo credit: Ben Guerin

" There is a phrase:

‘the sweet smell of success’. And I can only tell you, I’ve had two experiences of that and it just smells like Brighton and oyster bars and things like that... "

Laurence Olivier


The Salt Room

Located just metres from the beach, The Salt Room offers a short but enticing menu of modern British dishes, with an emphasis on fresh, local seafood. The ‘Surfboard’ is absolutely not to be missed, essentially a fruit de mer platter, but with several significant upgrades. Most of the shellfish are served hot, barbecued or roasted rather than boiled or steamed, and ours also came with meaty chunks of perfectly deep-fried squid. The quality and selection is a cut above; instead of the usual cockles, winkles, and whelks that usually bulk out similar seafood platters, this one comes with plump mussels, Palourde clams, and scallops on the half-shell. It’s served with crisp, well-seasoned chips (because there should always be chips), as well as an irresistibly pungent aioli that will give you the most gorgeous garlic breath for hours, if not days.


photo credit: The Urchin facebook


The Urchin

The Urchin in Hove manages to achieve something quite rare, which is to serve exceptionally good food while still maintaining a casual pub atmosphere. In fact, the first thing that strikes you about the Urchin is the sweet smell of malt, wafting up from the basement, where they brew their own range of excellent craft beer. A cold stout with oysters dressed with buttermilk and dill is the perfect prelude to a freewheeling seafood and vegetable feast, with classics such as moules mariniere and salt and pepper squid sitting quite comfortably alongside internationally-influenced specials such as Malaysian prawns, Jerusalem artichokes with ssamjang and blue cheese, and scallop crudo with pink grapefruit. Little touches make a big impact on the overall experience, such as a Marie Rose sauce cleverly flavoured with crab roe. The star of the show was a whole brown crab drenched in seaweed butter sauce, though we couldn’t help covetously eyeing the lobsters as they landed on surrounding tables.


Brass Monkey

As any good seaside town should, Brighton has a true glut of ice cream options. Even with so many places to choose from, we kept returning to the Brass Monkey, a stylish, modern parlour tucked away in the Lanes, which has one of those menus that seems relatively small at first, until you realise you want everything on that menu and have real trouble deciding what to order. At this point, salted caramel can feel a bit played out, but I would urge you not to miss Brass Monkey’s version. It’s truly courageous, taking the caramel to the brink of bitterness so it has real depth of flavour, with a perfectly judged level of salt to make it as addictive as a bag of pretzels. More creative flavours such as the lavender and honey or saffron and rose are beautifully floral without being soapy, and the roasted banana tastes like the most delicious banana bread you’ve ever eaten, in ice cream form.

photo credit: Kogi tripadvisor



I knew I’d love Kogi before I even ate there because of one menu item very seldom seen in the UK: soondae. Soondae is a Korean blood sausage, filled with supple glass noodles to absorb and bind the blood, but it really is all about the blood, with all the richness of a Spanish morcilla or a French boudin noir. Soondae on a menu feels like a statement of intent: these are not just the same ‘greatest hits’ of Korean cuisine you find at any other restaurant, but an offering that dives a little bit deeper and provides something a bit different. The soondae is a delight, plump and rich and served with an addictive chilli salt, and classics such as tteokbokki, Korean fried chicken, and bibimbap are also excellent.

Photo credit: 1 & 2 Jo Hunt Photography & Image 3 - 5 2 Pickles Digital



Many restaurants in Brighton and elsewhere now boast an admirable ‘no waste’ policy, but few that I’ve been to execute that policy with as much creativity and gusto as Kindling. Case in point: a complimentary amuse bouche made from asparagus and cabbage trimmings blitzed into a vibrant chilled soup, topped with chopped walnuts and wild garlic oil. This set the tone for a flawless meal that emphasised top-quality produce. Highlights included a rich cuttlefish stew and a whole lemon sole with brown butter, sea vegetables, and capers, but the standout dish was also the most unassuming: tri-tip of Scottish beef, grilled over coffee beans. It was served with a delicious mustard sauce, but in all honestly it was unnecessary, as the beef itself was so flavourful and juicy. This is what Kindling is all about: finding the best produce possible, then finding the best way to let that produce express itself.

Tim's TOP picKS in PICS

Top to bottom 1. Burrata with romesco sauce at The Salt Room 2 & 3. Chilled asparagus & cabbage soup at Kindling 4. Tri-tip steak at Kindling 5. Fish tempura at The Salt Room 6. Mackerel nduja and whipped ricotta at The Salt Room 7. Sea bass crudo at The Salt Room 8. Saffron and hokey pokey at Brass Monkeys 9. House-brewed oyster stout at The Urchin 10. Hispi cabbage with ogleshield and truffle at The Urchin 11. Seared scallops, grapefruit, turnips and chervil at The Urchin 12. Jerusalem artichoke, ssamjang and blue cheese at The Urchin.

Many thanks to Chef Tim Anderson for his wonderful foodie recommendations in sunny, vibrant Brighton. We can't wait to hop on the train from London and take a seat at these tables!

To keep up to date with Tim's foodie adventures, you can follow him on instagram here or visit Nanban, his Japanese soul food restaurant in Brixton. If you liked this article, check out Tim Anderson's chef interview for more interesting insights into his career in food!


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