The best places to eat, stay, shop and visit in the South West

Restaurants in Lyme Regis

Discerning foodies won't want to miss a trip to these first-rate dining spots in Dorset
swim restaurant in lyme regis
Image: Matt Austin

This Dorset town has become a magnet for foodies that flock to the coastal spot in numbers that rival its hordes of fossil-seekers. Discover the draw with five of our favourite restaurants in Lyme Regis

SWIM, Marine Parade

Lyme’s coastal-cool SWIM restaurant serves up Cali beach vibes with its all-day bill of seaside-y dishes, cracking views and Insta-worthy palette of pastel pinks, distressed wood, houseplants and wall prints.

Perched alongside the shimmering sands, this laid-back spot is as good a destination for post-beach-walk coffee and pastries (baked in-house) as it is for long lunches (favourites include the grass-fed Dorset longhorn burger) and seafood suppers of pan-roasted Lyme Bay fish. The excellent craft beer and cocktails line-up also cements this as a picturesque place for lingering late to watch the sun set over the harbour from the bifold windows.

Tip: visit with Fido after a walk on the beach. Dogs are welcome indoors and out.

Visit SWIM.

Millside dish

Millside, Mill Lane

Georgina and John Baker took over Millside in November 2019 and, as one might imagine, their journey hit a bumpy start after a global pandemic saw their plans come to a rather abrupt halt. But the resilient pair persevered and have since built an impressive reputation and bagged two AA rosettes.

John oversees front of house, while Georgina leads the kitchen team. Her globetrotting CV includes stints in Switzerland, London and France, reflected in dishes that showcase local produce with international influence: think coquilles st jacques bathed in Lyme Bay Winery Brut cream; and red mullet with sweet and sour hispi cabbage, rich 12‑spice sauce and crisp kale.

Tip: you’ll need a booking weeks in advance for this popular spot. Can’t get a table? Pick up a ‘lobbie dog’ (homemade bread roll stuffed with juicy lobster meat, avocado puree, paprika mayo and baby gem) from the Lobster Cart parked outside the restaurant.

Visit The Millside.

Beachside restaurants, The Oyster & Fish House

The Oyster & Fish House, Cobb Road

Dorset seafood maestro and award-winning food writer Mark Hix’s rustic restaurant serves responsibly sourced seafood in unfussy pared-back dishes – brought in daily by the local fishermen. There’s a lovely synergy to tucking into the spoils of the sea while gazing over the Jurassic coast through floor to-ceiling windows (and the covered wooden deck skirting the gleaming glass restaurant is the place to enjoy a sundowner in Lyme).

The daily line-up is paired with seasonal ingredients sourced from carefully chosen local producers. Shellfish soup with rouille and croutons, baked Lyme Bay scallops with a herb crust, and grilled catch of the day with sea vegetables showcase stonking produce minus any fripperies. Accompanying the food is a drinks list that reads like a who’s who of the region’s craft brewers, distillers and vineyards. Castlewood Vineyard leads a roll call that includes Lyme Regis Brewery and Dorset’s Black Cow Pure Milk Vodka.

Tip: Keep an eye out for guest chef events with other leading South West chefs such as Rick Stein, Nathan Outlaw and Mitch Tonks.

Visit The Oyster & Fish House.


Baroque, Drakes Way

The fusion of two passionate foodie people inspired small, boutique eatery, Baroque in Lyme Regis.

Tucked down a quaint alleyway, this bijou restaurant offers the unique combination of centuries-old traditional South American wood-fired cooking with spices from across Europe to the Middle East. Classically trained chef-patron Mark Stout and partner Jane Jones wanted to break from dining tradition with the intention of combining the best local produce with flavours from far-flung places in dishes such as skewered jumbo prawns with Dorset chorizo, served with stewed chickpeas and sweet tomato.

In summertime, take to the outdoor tables to relish alfresco afternoon drinks and tapas: choose from the likes of Lebanese pork meatballs with urfa chilli, seven spice, roast tomato and za’atar, or Lyme Bay hand dived scallops grilled in the shell with zhoug butter, fatteh and lime. Love what you taste? You can book the Baroque flame-fuelled experience at your event as Mark and Jane offer private catering.

Tip: the entire menu is available in takeaway option for those who’d like to take a taste of Baroque home.

Visit Baroque.

Image: Matt Austin

Lilac Restaurant and Wine Bar, Broad Street

Lilac, nestled in a 400-year-old cellar on Broad Street, is chef Harriet Mansell’s love letter to Lyme. Here, the talented chef serves small plates spotlighting hyper-local and micro-seasonal food, crafted using only ethical and sustainable practices.

An edible expedition of the South West’s fields, hedgerows, moors, forests and coast, menus are laden with vegetables, fruits, plants, flowers, nuts and seeds, as well as wild fish and meat, while fermented and preserved foods extend the season’s bounty. Harriet’s passion for wild food sees her personally foraging many of the items, and dishes are paired with wines from organic, biodynamic and low-intervention winemakers, as well as innovative non-alcoholic homemade cordials made in-house.

Lilac fans will be delighted to discover the imminent unveiling of a new woodland-style outdoor dining space, Garden Table, where local insights will be paired with foraged food cooked over flame.

Tip: the team hosts foraging walks for home cooks who want to learn how to incorporate wild foods into their own dishes.

Visit Lilac.

Enjoyed reading our pick of the best restaurants in Lyme Regis? Dive into our insider’s guide to the coastal town and discover more excellent restaurants as well as places to stay, drink and shop.

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