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Essex has a large number of pubs and restaurants, but some are better than others.

And what better way to find out than by reading American visitors’ opinions of our best establishments?

Interestingly, a common compliment Americans like to pay to our restaurants is how clean they are.

Read more: Get the latest food and drink news from Essex

They also like to judge the portion sizes – but coming from the United States, this isn’t surprising.

Another thing our friends across the pond have picked up on is the speed of service, as many of the reviewers were very critical about how slow their food arrived.

EssexLive took a look at some of the reviews left by our transatlantic cousins, and they all made us smile.

Reviewing the prestigious Loch Fyne restaurant in Chelmsford, CoolGal Z. from Ashburn, Virginia said: “Very limited menu.

“Food quality is just okay, nothing special.

“Service was super slow on the day we went.

“Not really any options for your friends who don’t like seafood, so be aware.”

More positive was Yonelay M, from Alhambra, who said: “Quite spacious and good lighting.

“Ordered fried squid and today special King prawn chimchurri sauce as appetizer.

“Fish & chips (cod) is pretty big portion and like it.”

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Also in Chelmsford, Zenxi got a mixed review from Yonelay.

They gave the restaurant a 3.5 star rating, but said: “From outside , not very impressive.

“Service is a bit on the slow side even though it is not very busy.

“The food in general is good though.

“My favourite is pork stew with yum.

“Sweet and sour pork and assam prawn are OK.

“Mapo tofu, i have tasted better with better pricing. quite clean.”

The Blue Strawberry Bistrot in Hatfield Peverel received three reviews from Americans, all of them glowing.



The Blue Strawberry
The Blue Strawberry

Otis M. from Redondo Beach, said: “What a wonderful find.

“About 60 miles east of London, if you are on this side of the country definitely check it out.

“Quaint decor throughout, covered outside dining area. Nice bar area and small rooms which are perfect for intimate group gatherings.

“The fare is bistro. I started with local asparagus with hollandaise and parmesan shavings.

“Followed it up with a whole sole, “grilled” to perfection. Then finished with a creme brûlée. Had a pleasant Pinot Noir along with.

“Service was attentive. I had not expected to find such a wonderful place out where it is.”

Ulli K. from Boston agreed, writing: “So worth the visit! considering that the English countryside is full of gastro-pubs this is just a wonderful, quaint restaurant/bistro. Nice wine list, delicious food, attentive service”.

Further east, T. W. from Lake Worth reviewed El Guaca in Clacton-on-Sea.

They were very positive about their experience and said: “The food is amazing and service is attentive and flawless.

” I had the prawns (shrimp) in coconut squash.

“It was simply divine and the shrimp was extremely fresh. The habanero hot sauce on the tables is a nice touch that gives the food the extra kick. Definitely recommended!”

And in Maldon, Il Camino also got a glowing review from Lisa E in Phoenix.

She said: “Why go to Italy when you can go to Il Camino?

“This is an unexpected jewel of a restaurant found in the most unexpected place – the town of Maldon.

“We thought we were eating at a fine dining establishment in London or New York. The food was exquisite!”

She added: “We wished we could have ordered dessert, but the large portions filled us up.

“The service was the best we have had in England. And last, the ambiance was cozy, clean, and warm.”

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