Good Food Guide revived after being retired by previous owners Waitrose

The Good Food Guide, first published in 1951, will make a triumphant comeback after being retired by its previous owners Waitrose.

Rights to the well-respected dining resource have been acquired by the hospitality members’ network CODE, which will relaunch the guide – with a new website and newsletter – today and print its first book in 2022.

CODE founder Adam Hyman stressed he has “major expansion plans”, but said its principles would remain the same, with inspectors continuing to dine anonymously and their bills being paid in full.

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“I’m delighted we’ve had the opportunity to bring The Good Food Guide back to life, especially in its 70th year,” he said.

Elizabeth Carter promotes the Good Food Guide in 2008. Picture: Geoffrey Swaine/Shutterstock

“Sitting down for a good meal is one of life’s great joys and I’m excited to carry on celebrating this.”

Chefs and restaurateurs were dismayed by news the guide would cease publication after Waitrose announced its decision in May.

Many had long praised its democratic and inclusive approach, with country pubs and neighbourhood curry houses sitting alongside some of the most famous restaurants in Britain.

Editor of 14 years Elizabeth Carter said “she cannot wait” to get going.

She said: “The Good Food Guide helped drive good, affordable restaurants across the UK. It doesn’t have a London focus and was designed for everyone to explore what the country had to offer.”

She added in an announcement: “It’s been a gruelling time for the restaurant business and after watching from the sidelines, I’m thrilled to be getting back to work.

“I’m looking forward to experiencing fresh thinking, discussing new ideas and, of course, eating some delicious food.”

Chef Chantelle Nicholson said it was important for the British public to have accessible and trustworthy information on restaurants.

“I’m really delighted to hear the news that The Good Food Guide is coming back,” she said.

“It always offered a diverse account of restaurants within the UK.

"With the input from guests, a restaurant and pub’s most valued critics, it is a widely accessible and trustworthy guide, so I am excited to read the comeback issue when it is released."

Raymond Postgate, a socialist author, journalist, and historian, first published The Good Food Guide in 1951 with one simple aim: “To raise the standard of cooking in Britain and to do ourselves a bit of good by making our holidays, travels and evenings-out … more enjoyable.”

Martin George, from Waitrose, said: “We are proud to have been associated with The Good Food Guide for the past eight years and grateful to everyone who has contributed to it.

“The calibre of CODE Hospitality’s industry expertise and dedicated membership provides the perfect home for the guide with their exciting plans promising to expand its readership and further strengthen the brand.”

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