The Ledbury, 127 Ledbury Road, London W11 2AQ
An understated alternative to Gordon Ramsay
Tuesday 19 April 2011
Discreet as a footman, quiet as a nun and modest as a fieldmouse about its achievements, the Ledbury is the antithesis of the Gordon Ramsay/Heston Blumenthal breed of restaurant. As you walk past its ash-grey walls and take in the hedges and the huge terrace umbrellas, you'd swear it was hiding away from the world. Inside, its white-beige-cream decor is studiedly understated, the staff are friendly but not intrusively matey, and it lets the food do the talking.
The Ledbury's secret weapon is Brett Graham, the Australian head chef installed by owner Nigel Platts-Martin when it opened in 2005. While its cooking style is nominally French haute cuisine, Graham brings such an inspired mélange of pan-European and Pacific Rim touches – flame-grilled mackerel with smoked eel; Celtic mustard and shiso; Yorkshire grouse with prunes cooked in lapsang souchong, deer baked in hay with sauerkraut and chocolate – you'd be pushed to call it anything but Brett Cuisine.
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