It’s rare to find an establishment that produces refined French food, especially in the heart of London, that also boasts a relaxed environment. It’s even rarer to find somewhere like this that is nestled amongst mews houses in a quiet neighbourhood right in the centre of South Kensington. That is what makes Launceston Place special – it finds the perfect balance to host fine dining in a relaxed and homely atmosphere.
With the kitchen headed up by the incredibly talented Raphael Francois who joined from Le Cirque in New York, Launceston Place has gone from strength to strength serving a flamboyant and seasonally-inspired British menu to the residents of South Kensington.
Classic, French dining at its finest with options of both tasting menu and à la carte.
Although it is a fine dining restaurant in one of London’s more affluent areas, Launceston Place retains its relaxed, neighbourhood restaurant vibe. The atmosphere is far from stuffy and the incredibly friendly and attentive staff create a warm and homely atmosphere that compliments the food perfectly.
The seasonal menu has something for everyone, but as it tends to go with French cuisine, it’s going to be a decedent meal. A special mention has to be paid to the blue crab starter – quite possibly one of the best starters I’ve ever had. Dressed blue crab sits underneath a velvety layer of creamed potato finished with a tarragon jus. It’s this type of simplicity that Raphael emulates in his cooking which has made Launceston Place such a success.
Roasted guinea fowl with green and brown cauliflower and pomegranate makes for a beautiful autumnal dish as well as the pork complete with confit belly. It’s hearty, warming cooking which is exactly what you crave on a cold winter’s night – yet with that refined edge, it takes it to a whole other level.
The talented sommelier at Launceston Place knows everything one could ever desire about wine, so you’re in safe hands when it comes to pairing for your meal. There’s an option to add pairing to the tasting menu or you can order by the glass. Whichever you opt for, there is extensive choice from all areas of the world that will compliment your food perfectly.
It’s definitely a place for a special occasion, as prices reflect the fact it’s a fine dining restaurant. The three course dinner menu is £55 pp and the more extensive seven course tasting menu for £65 (both without wine).
Celebrations with family and friends or a date night where you really want to impress.