When casual dining doesn't quite cut it, you can rely on these casual fine dining restaurants in Cheltenham to deliver an upgraded experience, from stunning surrounds to in-house mixologists and sommeliers.
They might not have Michelin stars, but some of these have still been mentioned in the Michelin Guide and all promise something very special. SoGlos rounds up 10 casual fine dining restaurants to visit in Cheltenham.
Whether you fancy a light lunch, something to accompany a round of drinks, or the chance to try a little bit of everything for dinner, the sharing plates at Sam's Montpellier can cover all bases.
With the option to mix and match dishes from earth, land and sea, everyone from veggies to vegans and bona fide carnivores is catered for here, while the in-house mixologist can create some incredible cocktails to match.
Summer 2022 saw the fine dining restaurant, L'Artisan, which received a glowing review from food critic Jay Rayner in The Observer, converted into a French bistro - café du midi, serving breakfast and lunch, instead of dinner.
Owners Elisabeth and Yves Ogrodzki continue to create set menus inspired by the different regions of France, while their 'horse choux' pastries celebrating the town's racing heritage remain the only signature food product of Cheltenham.
Petit Coco Bistro
Just off Cheltenham's High Street, this cosy basement bistro excels at classic French fare, with everything from baked Camembert and escargots to moules marinieres and magret de canard on the menu.
Petit Coco Bistro regularly hosts live music events too, with the Swing from Paris quartet entertaining diners on many occasions by recreating the sounds of a chic Parisian café.
East India Café
From scallop samosas to lemon duck tikka, East India Café serves Indian food - but not as you know it! Located on Cheltenham's Promenade, it specialises in Anglo-Indian cuisine and has been listed in the Michelin guide for years.
Making use of prime local meats, home-grown herbs and home-ground spices, its tasting menus promise to take diners on a gastronomic tour, from the foothills of the Himalayas to the banks of The Ganges.
Nine years after winning Celebrity MasterChef, former England and Gloucester rugby player Phil Vickery opened his very own restaurant, No.3 in Cheltenham's Royal Crescent, alongside executive chef Tom Rains.
While the lunch and dinner menu emphasises meat and fish, alongside sharing plates, Wednesdays are Steak Nights, with brunch and Sunday lunch both options as well.
With one chef from Paris and one chef from India, Muse Brasserie combines elements of traditional European and Asian cuisine - promising a unique fusion experience.
Even the cocktail list is every bit as inspired as the surroundings, with the dining room at the highest rated restaurant in Cheltenham adorned with apple blossom for added romance.
Hebe Restaurant and Café
Behind this independent restaurant, which opened in August 2022 opposite the iconic Cheltenham Ladies College, is chef Ilias Ziogkas - formerly of Barnsley House near Cirencester.
Serving brunch, lunch and dinner, Hebe prides itself on using locally-foraged produce and the very best seasonal ingredients in its dishes, which are complemented by an impressive list of world-renowned wines.
Local and organic ingredients take centre stage at this independently run British bistro in Cheltenham's Suffolks district, open for dinner from Wednesday to Saturday, as well as lunch at weekends.
Renowned for its Sunday lunches, which change every week, Suffolk Rock usually offers diners a choice of three different roast meats, alongside a vegetarian and a vegan option.
Bistro du Vin Cheltenham
Setting the scene for something special, the glittering wine glass chandelier at Cheltenham's Hotel du Vin is a real focal point of its bistro, where an in-house sommelier can help you pick the perfect accompaniment to your meal.
As well as a la carte menus filled with French-inspired dishes and seasonal offerings, Bistro du Vin Cheltenham offers tasting menus (one of them vegan) and even a dedicated children's menu.
Bhoomi Kitchen was one of the first restaurants to be opened by Jay Rahman and Michael Raphel, the two friends behind Cheltenham's fine dining restaurant Prithvi, fusion restaurant BAO + BBQ, and For the Saints espresso bar.
Specialising in Keralan dishes, Bhoomi Kitchen's traditional one pot curries and barbecue dishes have secured it space in the Michelin Guide for years, with extra special mention for the chocolate samosas for dessert.