How the AA assesses for Rosette Awards

The AA’s Rosette award scheme was the first nationwide scheme for assessing the quality of food served by restaurants and hotels. The Rosette scheme is an award, not a classification, and although there is necessarily an element of subjectivity when it comes to assessing taste, we aim for a consistent approach throughout the UK. Our awards are made solely on the basis of a meal visit or visits by one or more of our hotel and restaurant inspectors, who have unrivalled breadth and depth of experience in assessing quality. They award Rosettes annually on a rising scale of one to five.

So what makes a restaurant worthy of a Rosette Award?

For our inspectors, the top and bottom line is the food. The taste of a dish is what counts, and whether it successfully delivers to the diner the promise of the menu. A restaurant is only as good as its worst meal. Although presentation and competent service should be appropriate to the style of the restaurant and the quality of the food, they cannot affect the Rosette assessment as such, either up or down. The summaries below indicate what our inspectors look for, but are intended only as guidelines. The AA is constantly reviewing its award criteria and competition usually results in an all-round improvement in standards, so it becomes increasingly difficult for restaurants to reach award level.

One Rosetterosette

  • Excellent restaurants that stand out in their local area
  • Food prepared with care, understanding and skill
  • Good quality ingredients

Two Rosettesrosetterosette

  • The best local restaurants
  • Higher standards
  • Better consistency
  • Greater precision apparent in the cooking
  • Obvious attention to the quality and selection of ingredients

Three Rosettesrosetterosetterosette

  • Outstanding restaurants demanding recognition well beyond local area
  • Selection and sympathetic treatment of highest quality ingredients
  • Timing, seasoning and judgement of flavour combinations consistent
  • Excellent intelligent service and a well chosen wine list

Four Rosettesrosetterosetterosetterosette

  • Intense ambition
  • A passion for excellence
  • Superb technical skills
  • Remarkable consistency
  • Appreciation of culinary traditions combined with desire for exploration and improvement
  • Cooking demands national recognition

Five Rosettesrosetterosetterosetterosetterosette

  • Cooking stands comparison with the best in the world
  • Highly individual
  • Breathtaking culinary skills
  • Setting the standards to which others aspire
  • Knowledgeable and distinctive wine list
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