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Diners' Choice: Lively restaurants in Essex

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OpenTable
Updated May 05, 2024

Looking for restaurants that have the most vibrant bar scenes in Essex? You’re in the right place. Each month, OpenTable analyzes nearly 2 million global diner reviews from the past four months. We sort the results by location and category to help you discover new favorite restaurants. It's a great partnership: you reserve, eat, and review. We listen...and deliver the results for all to benefit. Enjoy!


A photo of Mad Dogs & Englishmen restaurant
4.8
4.8 (2568)
£26 to £40
Afternoon Tea
Leigh-On-Sea
About the restaurant
The Parlour Tea Room at Mad Dogs and Englishmen provides a vintage setting to enjoy Afternoon tea. We’ve become renowned for our themed teas which offer an unforgettable experience. Enjoy the eclectic surroundings of this unique venue.
The Botanical Rooms is upstairs and hosts our cocktail bar. Here you can experience Afternoon Tea from Wednesday to Sunday during the day and enjoy the fairy-lit bar on Friday and Saturday evenings. We host live Jazz and soul on some evenings.
The Piano Lounge with it's vintage leather sofas and a mixture of eclectic styled furnishings is situated on the ground floor alongside our Whisky Bar. You can enjoy an Afternoon Tea with Piano accompaniment on Sunday afternoons or sample some of our extensive Whisky cocktails on Friday and Saturday evenings. We have live Jazz performances on selected evenings.
Please ensure you select the correct venue and experience for your visit with us.

Top review
KevinB
Dined on May 5, 2024
Nice experience very attentive and helpful.. good price and great atmosphere
A photo of Lot Bar & Restaurant restaurant
4.7
4.7 (1255)
£26 to £40
Contemporary European
Brentwood
About the restaurant


Lot Bar and Restaurant is a family run business offering freshly prepared food from 8am until 10pm daily. Whether you are looking for an informal breakfast or light lunch with friends or a 3 course celebration dinner in the evening or simply a drink in the bar after work, we have the best to offer locally.
We at Lot Bar and Restaurant take pride the quality of our ingredients, the high standard of presentation and excellent service. A seasonally changing breakfast and lunch menu offers everything you could want from a kitchen and our evening A la carte menu includes restaurant favourites as well as daily changing specials. On Sunday afternoons we offer the best Roast available. Our wine list, available from 11am, is curated by us to include the faithful, the unusual and the interesting.

Top review
AnnEvip
Dined 3 days ago
Lovely lunch enjoying the outside dining. Food choices fab & great quality. Excellent service as always.
A photo of Alec's Restaurant restaurant
4.7
4.7 (76)
£41 and over
Seafood
Brentwood
About the restaurant
Alec’s Restaurant opened in 2010 and has established itself as one of Essex’s leading fish Restaurants. Alec’s prides itself on quality ingredients and exceptional service.
Unwind with a premium bottle of wine or signature cocktail in the comfortable lounge before taking a seat in the elegant main dining room, which can accommodate 120 guests.
Roaring fires in the winter and a delightful outdoor dining area in the summer, only enhance the elegant building.
The menu at Alec’s Restaurant is traditionally British and sets out to provide simple, quality fresh food. Although predominantly a seafood restaurant serving the finest fish and shellfish, mouth-watering meat dishes add to this impressive menu.
We are proud to follow the MSC code of conduct for sustainably sourced seafood. Plus, all seafood and fish are wild and ‘day boat caught’ from across Britain.
Please note that this restaurant operates a strict policy of no children under 12 years, and a smart casual dress code.


Top review
RituKvip
Dined on Apr 16, 2024
A very pleasant evening with an excellent server, Scott. Food has gone downhill from before but was ok and made up by the overall ambience.
A photo of Sienna's Restaurant - UK restaurant
4.7
4.7 (191)
£25 and under
European
Brentwood
About the restaurant
At Siennas, our experienced chefs spend time, carefully sourcing our ingredients. They treat the ingredients with the respect they deserve, which gives our guests, the food they desire.

Looking for a romantic meal for 2 or a get together with friends, Siennas is the place.
We have a very intimate setting, that caters for all and private hires are high on our list for popular events, alongside our Dinner & Singer nights, Boozy Brunches and Family & Social Gatherings.

Top review
Susanski
Dined 4 days ago
Great food, beautifully cooked and served by lovely staff. It was my second visit for lunch at this restaurant and it was just as relaxing and enjoyable.
A photo of Kara Lounge & Grill restaurant
4.7
4.7 (1039)
£25 and under
Turkish
Grays
About the restaurant
We are proud to serve you one of the healthiest and most well-balanced Turkish and Mediterranean food in Essex.

Our dishes are prepared freshly upon order, using authentic recipes, traditional cooking methods with finest ingredients.

Our focus is to provide the highest quality of service available.

Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined 2 days ago
Absolute top notch from start to finish👌Highly recommended
A photo of Yaz Restaurant restaurant
4.6
4.6 (71)
£26 to £40
Middle Eastern
Highams Park
About the restaurant
WELCOME TO YAZ Your Delicious Escape to the Mediterranean They say variety is the spice of life. Charming choices are at your feet, the moment you enter through our doors you will be met with a welcome only a independent family run business can provide. What will it be today - the Bistro for breakfast and brunch on our cosy Chesterfield sofas or perhaps you will take the winding staircase to our lush cocktail bar for something to sip on over supper? YAZ is all about laidback-luxury with a Mediterranean / Middle Eastern twist, so you can expect great vibes and gorgeous food throughout the day and late into the night. In the same way our venue offers two settings, with the ground floor for a more casual cosy Bistro experience and the first floor indulging you in an elegant evening rendezvous, where you can stroll on to our heated outdoor alfresco balcony to sip on a cocktail of your choice with the Mediterranean sun gleaming upon your face. YAZ there's no place like it.
Top review
Yvesa
Dined 2 days ago
Really friendly staff. Nice vegan food options. Will definitely be back :)
A photo of Zebrano Brentwood restaurant
4.6
4.6 (168)
£26 to £40
Seafood
Brentwood
About the restaurant
Welcome to Zebrano, Brentwood’s newest sushi & seafood restaurant, where you can indulge in the freshest sushi, most delicious seafood delicacies prepared with the finest ingredient & attention to detail. The interior is lush & welcoming with an embracing ambiance, featuring an elegant bar & a separate lounge floor.
The menu at Zebrano features a wide range of sushi & sashimi, prepared by skilled & experienced sushi chef.
In addition to sushi, Zebrano also offers a selection of hot & cold seafood dishes. The restaurant’s wine list is carefully curated to complement the flavours of the seafood and sushi dishes.
Zebrano is the perfect choice for anyone who appreciates fine sushi and seafood in a sophisticated yet welcoming setting.
Infants and children under 8yrs are not permitted after 8pm, Please note that we do not offer a children’s menu
Opening times vary in BH & Special days.

Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined 2 days ago
The food was really nice, and the service was amazing. The attention to detail was great with staff coming to the table as soon as a drink was low. Also small details when someone spilt something it was cleaned without anyone needing to ask. Can highly recommend to anyone.
A photo of Sevine Brasserie restaurant
4.6
4.6 (46)
£25 and under
Mediterranean
Harlow
About the restaurant
Treat yourself to a culinary adventure at our delightful restaurant, where we offer a fusion of Mediterranean cuisine. We are pleased to accommodate group bookings and look forward to welcoming you.

Our restaurant is conveniently located in Harlow within the Water Gardens. Whether you’re joining us for brunch, lunch or dinner, book a table now and experience a wonderful dining experience with us.

Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined 4 days ago
Everything was very good. The food was delicious and the staff was friendly.
A photo of The Eyna restaurant
4.6
4.6 (503)
£26 to £40
Turkish
Basildon
About the restaurant
The Eyna is a new, refreshing, traditional Turkish cuisine coming to the heart of Basildon. With a open-plan dining experience, open kitchen & central bar, we're sure this will be your perfect location for all types of events or casual dining.
Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined 5 days ago
This was our second visit and was wowed again with the extremely friendly and helpful staff. The delicious food,ample portions This is our new favourite restaurant so will become a regular visitor
A photo of Funky Monk restaurant
4.3
4.3 (136)
£26 to £40
British
Epping
About the restaurant
Welcome to the Funky Monk, nestled in the heart of Epping, where the spirit of classic hospitality runs deep in our veins. Our passion lies in curating delectable seasonal British fare using time-honoured culinary methods. We proudly present an extensive array of distinctive boutique and traditional wines that continually spark conversations and intrigue among our guests.

Join us for a delightful evening with your friends or that special someone. On Fridays and Saturdays, we amp up the excitement with live entertainment in our restaurant, creating the perfect atmosphere for you to groove, though we kindly request you keep your dancing feet off the tables!

For an even more enchanting experience, consider reserving one of our Suites, allowing you to savour the magic just a bit longer. The Funky Monk is where cherished memories are made, so come and dine with us soon!

Top review
Dominique2018
Dined on May 9, 2024
I’ve always wanted to try this restaurant & I must say I really enjoyed my birthday evening there. The design & art of the restaurant was amazing, the tables & booths were a really good size space. Very clean also! The service was amazing, our waiter was friendly & consistent! The food was amazing, beautiful size portions & the steak was well tasty. My family & I really enjoyed our night. Thankyou
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