Monday, December 6, 2010

A celebration of sorts at The Ledbury

What can I say about the Ledbury? With its chef, Brett Graham fired off the 2010 year to an explosive start with being lauded 2 Michelin Stars. The food having been tasted and rated and loved by the foodie gourmet world.

For my birthday this year, a dear friend of mine, S decided to treat me to a birthday meal at The Ledbury. Chosen apparently because Brett Graham is an Australian (where I was living prior to London), my very obvious love and fascination with food and the buzz that had swirling over this place.

It has taken me quite a few months to finally put up this post, sorry!

It was a busy day at work and rushing there journeying on the Tube was not the greatest of experience. Anyhow, I finally arrived and we were seated. Opted for the Tasting Menu which was £75 pp (£120 incl.

Amuse Bouche

We started with an amuse bouche which I have no idea as to what it is called (couldn't quite catch what the waiter said). I was still recovering from my mad dash journey. 

amuse bouche
Ceviche of Hand Dived Scallops with Seaweed and Herb Oil, Kohlrabi and Frozen Horseradish

It was light and delicate, with the sweetness of the scallops coming through. It was refreshing and an excellent start to the culinary journey.

salad of heritage tomatoes
Heritage Tomatoes with Green Tomato Juice, Goat’s Curd and Herbs

I absolutely loved the presentation when it arrived. A rainbow of colours glistening and beckoning, wowing the visual senses. It did not disappoint in the tasting area either. With four different types of tomatoes used, it was an education and awakening to the different taste and textures that they each bring. The earthiness flavour of the goat’s curd helped to bring the tartness of the tomatoes to just the right level to create the right balance.

risotto of squid
Risotto of Squid with Pine Nuts, Sherry and Cauliflower

I am noticing an increase with the invention of food where chefs are starting to replace carb-based elements (eg. Risotto, rice) with another ingredient but yet created to look like what it was replacing. It was something different, and I quite like the springiness texture of the squid, it gives a different sensation as they were all diced to tiny cubes.

crisp chicken wings
Saute of Chicken Wings with Milk Skin, Mousserons and White Asparagus

What is not to like with this? Skin that is perfectly crisp and the chicken cooked just right. It immediately highlighted to me that this chef knows and loves his meat.

sea trout
Roast Sea Trout with Hispi Cabbage, Bacon, Smoked Marrow and Red Wine

This was cooked perfectly but did not wow.

Best End and Shoulder of New Season Lamb with an Aubergine Glazed with Black Sugar and Garlic

This was good, cooked and seasoned just right such that the meat and all its yummy juices flows and oozes its every inch. However, this dish felt like a repetition to me. In a sense that to me, a tasting menu should be about the chef showing his skills and creativity with each dish bringing something different. Having had the chicken wings earlier which already signalled to me that the chef knows his meat and knows it well, I was expecting for him to show more of what else he can do.


creme caramel
Crème Caramel with Apricot and Jasmine

Dessert to me was good but non-impressionable.

Overall, I think that the food in The Ledbury is really good but none sparkled with amazing fireworks that had me reliving it for days after. The repetition in the tasting menu was perhaps either a menu designing factor or is this all that Brett Graham has in his sleeves? Maybe I would have seen more by going the A la carte option? Maybe.

Don't hate me! =(
The Ledbury, 127 Ledbury Road, Notting Hill, London W11 2AQ

The Ledbury on Urbanspoon


  1. How good is the Ledbury? I just love it!

  2. Gourmet Chick - I think I need to go back again....=)

  3. Shame you didn't have the fireworks - I did! It's my favourite restaurant in London.

  4. When we went for dinner and had the tasting menu we had the same impression I think you had...good but nothing amazing. Perhaps the tasting menu is just weak (I found this also at Le Gavroche, for example) and you can see the real talent of the chef(s) on the a la caret...I don't know. But if that is the case, what is the point of the tasting menu, if not to showcase the best of what you can do in beautiful little packages? We loved the place and the service, but the food was certainly not memorable. We seem to be in the minority though, so maybe it was an off night...but I'm really not sure. Brave the blogger who dares not to *love* the Ledbury :)

  5. LF - I know, isn't the tasting menu meant to be the showcard for the chefs? Feels almost a little cheated when the chef places all the goodies in the a la carte instead. LOL! we shall be the brave souls...


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