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A guide to the best bars and restaurants for a day at the races at Cheltenham Racecourse

By LLM Reporters  |  December 9, 2020

With an average of 65,000 visitors across Cheltenham Festival every March, it’s safe to say that it is a popular event. The four-day bonanza at the home of jump racing is one of the highlights in the racing calendar and brings in a huge amount of visitors and income to the area.

Alongside the action on the track, visitors are keen to immerse themselves in the many dining and drinking venues to ensure their time spent at the racecourse is an unforgettable one, and luckily the facilities available are pretty impressive.

Researching where to eat and drink at the Cheltenham Festival before you arrive is important as you will want to make sure that you make that most of the luxury food and drink experiences at your disposal. You have the busy nature of this four-day event in March to consider, so preparing in advance and knowing what hospitality options are available at the course can help you plan for a top-quality visit.

Plan for your visit in advance and you will be able to make the best of the dining and drinking facilities when you’re there

Cheltenham is not short of champagne bars if you love a little bit of the bubbly. When you purchase Club tickets, you will have access to the Golden Miller Bar, named in honour of the five-time Gold Cup winner from the 1930s. There is also the Moet and Chandon Bar in Tattersalls, serving the popular champagne in its traditional mini-Moet flutes.

If you have a seat in the Princess Royal Stand on Club or Tattersalls tickets, then you can also pop into the Big Buck’s Bar on the first floor. This champagne bar, where you can also get tapas boards, sandwiches and other snacks, pays homage to the four-time Stayers’ Hurdle hero between 2009 and 2012.

If you want to get a true taste of Cheltenham, then you should visit the Arkle Bar. Named in honour of the Gold Cup hat-trick hero from the mid-1960s, Arkle Ale that is brewed by Arkell’s Brewery in Swindon is served on draught here. You can get in there with Club tickets, and the same can be said of Quevega’s. As well sinking your teeth into signature burgers, this wine bar has champagne and cocktails available and is named after the six-time Mares’ Hurdle winner who holds a Cheltenham Festival record for most consecutive victories at the meeting.

Many of the restaurants and bars are named after notable winners

The Mandarin Kitchen, meanwhile, has hot meals such as soups and award-winning pies which are produced locally and this Cheltenham Racecourse eatery is named for the last horse aged 11 to win the Gold Cup.

If street food whets your appetite, then the Centaur in Tattersalls has vendors who bring you flavours from around the world and there is something similar on the ground floor of the Princess Royal Stand with the Vestey Food Court.

Tattersalls ticket holders also have access to the See You Then bar. Called after yet another Cheltenham Festival great of ages past, this horse won the Champion Hurdle in three consecutive years during the mid-1980s and helped launch the training career of Nicky Henderson in the process.

If exploring these bars, eateries and the beloved Guinness Village during the crowds of the Festival aren’t for you, and you would prefer a sit-down meal instead, then Cheltenham can provide that too. Look into a hospitality package that involves multiple courses and wine in the Gold Cup and Festival Restaurant, the Horseshoe Pavilion, National Hunt and Panoramic restaurants, and Champions Walk.

With the last two, you are paying for the view as well as the food, so you can be sure of the best of both worlds when dining here ensuring you don’t miss out on any of the action while you dine. Cuisine varies from pub favourites to a la carte menus, with some truly delicious food being served, so you can be sure of a full range of culinary experiences to choose from at Cheltenham to suit your dining style.