After my food lover friend TB came back gushing about Launceston Place, I couldn’t wait to check it out. It took weeks to round up a party (celebrating a friend passing all her exams was a good enough reason) for a celebratory lunch.
We had a table by the window and it was enjoyable being able to bask in the glorious sun rays shining in. Service staff were beaming and friendly, a joyous day I predict it would be and the lunch party settled in and started nibbling on the parsnip crisps that was served.
We all settled for the 3 course lunch menu @ £20
First Course – Isle of Wight tomato, basil cappuccino
I think my dining friend was a tad surprised when it literally came looking like a cappuccino. I was lucky enough to have a taste, the zing of tomatoes came through sharp and clear. I quite like it.
First Course – Duck egg on toast, Somerset truffle
Firstly, I have never been served so many truffle slices on one plate. The aroma wafts and engulfs you in a sensory delight before you even taste it. Start eating...HELLO!! Eyes open wide, I love…I love…I love…
Everything works and harmonise together that I and other duck egg on toast choosers were on cloud nine. The silky almost creamy yolk from the duck egg soaked into the toast and it sticks and swirls in your mouth. So rich and so creamy, combined the truffles and it is seriously an umami gastronomic experience.
I was seriously at the point where I couldn’t care less about the other first courses eaten by the others, LOL!
First Course - Beef, beetroot and wild garlic risotto
So obviously, I was floating in my own world that I did not try this.
Amuse Bouche – very nice and a refreshing palate cleanser.
Second Course – Pork crubeens, onions, capers, mustard
Second Course – Cornish mackerel, cucumber, pickled onions
Second Course – Confit duck leg, spring onions, charlotte potatoes
I did not taste any of the other second courses other than my own. For a confit duck leg, the meat was actually too dry. The aftertaste of the sauce and potatoes with the duck was more oily than rich. After my excellent first course, this was a quick way to descent from cloud nine.
We also ordered some vegetables on the side.
Third Course – Apple tart, clotted cream ice cream
A debate went on with choosing the desserts and after some negotiations, two in the party got the apple tart as it can only be ordered in equal numbers. It arrived in a heavy copper pan and was sliced and served on the table with clotted cream ice cream as the accompaniment.
I really like this. Very homely and robust in flavour with the pastry thick yet crispy.
Third Course – Dark chocolate and raspberry mousse
Unfortunately for me, I made the wrong choice as the bitterness of the dark chocolate just did not go well with the tartness of the raspberry.
We continued to linger after our meal was over and I think we were there for so long and they didn’t know what to do with us then we found ourselves served with a fourth amuse bouche!
These were still fresh and piping hot from the oven. That was really nice of them and it came as a cue to us that we have probably been there a tad too long. We were not rushed or made to feel to leave in any way though.
There were some misses and brilliance here but that Duck egg on toast with truffles is truly a winner, such brilliance! You know you have a winner when on numerous occasions after, it came up in conversations when people mention raving about this dish and those who have tried it immediately know which restaurant that they are talking about.
This dish is still regularly relished with delight in my mind and I recommend anyone to try this. A three course lunch for £20 is incredibly good value, do add this to your wishlist.
Launceston Place, 1a Launceston Place, London W8 5RL