Launceston Place
Launceston Place
Launceston Place
Launceston Place
Launceston Place
Launceston Place
Launceston Place
Launceston Place
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SquareMeal Review of Launceston Place

Silver Award

Launceston Place has a long-standing tradition of employing chefs whose stars are on the rise, so it’s no surprise that readers deem it “the perfect canvas for new incumbent Ben Murphy’s exquisite cooking”. The tastefully refreshed, muted grey dining rooms of this 1830s townhouse provide a suitable backdrop for the chef’s generous carte and tasting menus, which are more than a match for the setting – witness the humble carrot wondrously transformed with lovage and caraway, pristine brill with verjus and turnips, rosy ibérico presa alongside crisp confit potato and steamed aubergine or an intricate chocolate sphere pointed up with yuzu and sesame. Elsewhere, a luxe reinvention of ‘egg and soldiers’ and an irresistible celeriac ‘carbonara’ draped in silky lardo both tip a witty hat to the classics – yes, this is tasteful flavour-first stuff and a “treat for any gourmand”. A bargain set lunch makes the whole experience affordable, the cheese trolley is a show-stopper, and the broadly chosen but inclusively priced wine list suggests a real passion for the subject – note the “exceptionally daring” pairings. 

 

Good to know

Average Price
££££ - £50 - £79
Cuisines
Modern European
Ambience
Cosy, Fine dining, Glamorous, Quiet conversation, Traditional, Widely spaced tables
Special Features
Wheelchair access
People
Group dining [8+], Romantic, Special occasions, Special occasions

This venue also offers

Launceston Place
Private Group Dining
Christmas at Launceston Place
Christmas Parties
Launceston Place
Event Party Venue

Special offers from Launceston Place

Sunday Lunch: 3 courses and a glass of bubbles at £35

From: 19 November, 2018
To: 31 January, 2020
Max: 6
From a set menu. Credit card details required for tables over 6. Offer is subject to availability, not available on blackout dates. Price excludes service and includes VAT. Not available in conjunction with any offer. Please note the table might be required back after 2 hours from the booking time.
Availability: Sun 12:00PM-3:30PM

Weekday Lunch Menu: 2/3 courses at £25/29

From: 19 November, 2018
To: 31 January, 2020
Max: 6
Choose from a set menu, 2 courses at £25.00 and 3 courses £29.00. Credit card details required for bookings of tables above 6 people.
Availability: Wed-Sat 12:00PM-2:30PM

Saturday Lunch Menu: 4 courses £35 with bubbles

From: 17 June, 2018
To: 31 January, 2020
Max: 6
Four-courses £35 with a glass of bubbles
Availability: Sat 12:00PM-2:30PM

Three course set menu with each course paired with a Nyetimber wine

From: 4 December, 2019
To: 4 January, 2020
Max: 6
Available for a limited time only, enjoy a three course set menu with each course paired with a Nyetimber wine for £90pp.
Availability: Sun-Fri 12:30PM-2:30PM 6:00PM-10:00PM,Sat 12:30PM-2:30PM

Location for Launceston Place

1a Launceston Place, Kensington, London, W8 5RL

020 7937 6912

Website

Opening Times

Wed–Sun 12N-2.30pm (Sun -3.30pm) Tues-Sat 6pm-10pm Sun 6.30pm-9pm

Reviews of Launceston Place

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24 Reviews 
Food/Drink
Service
Atmosphere
Value

Mr. Gary M

Taste sensations and excellent service
27 November 2019   - Verified Diner

Took a client who was terribly delayed. Had to phone twice to explain and finally pitched up well over an hour late. Was half expecting to get the cold shoulder from maitre d and staff but they were brilliant and really looked after us - including rustling up an odd "off menu" desert request from our client!

Food was fantastically tasty, including the mid-meal teasers - arguably more edible art than dinner! Precise menu that prevents too much dithering (I can recommend the duck with coffee sauce) with all dishes lovingly explained upon arrival.

Wine list (sorry, I mean wine encyclopaedia!) was extraordinary. Definitley something for all tastes and pockets.

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Ms/Mrs. Chiara P

The best meal I've had in a long time
20 March 2018  
This is tucked away down a pretty side street, not sure if you would stumble across it if you didn't know it was here. We have been here before when it was quite dark and corporate but now they have added a skylight and the whole places is much lighter and brighter. I will say that our meal was a stunner from start to finish, from the inventive amuse bouches of steamed mushroom buns dusted with matcha powder to the playful petit fours of "lollipops" of arctic roll. The service was the right level of attentive without being intrusive. I especially like the fact that although the menu descriptions are terse, what actually arrives are complete plates of food (my pet hate is getting a piece of meat/ fish and then being forced to order sides). My perfectly cooked duck was accompanied by unheralded (on the menu) fabulously crispy millefeuille potatoes, exactly what that sounds like, potatoes cut into thin sheaves to get super crispy but somehow miraculously holding together. In the immortal words of Mr Schwarzenegger I will be back #SMDinerReview
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Shamila W

Mr Murphy "in da house"
23 July 2017  
Launceston Place appears to be the perfect canvas for Ben Murphy's exquisite cooking. Showing style, flair and invention, the dishes at Launceston Place are a treat for any gourmand. The tasting menu showed the aptitude of a Michelin starred chef and I am sure that the restaurant is well on its way to reclaim the star that it lost from the 2017 Michelin guide. The "regular" wine pairing had some exceptionally daring choices that made us think that we would love to come back again after the menu has changed and try the premium pairing. Already looking forward to my next visit.
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David H

Prewtty much everything a one-start restaurant should be
21 March 2015  
Our first visit today at a reasonably busy lunchtime. Its very pleasantly situated in perhaps the most "villagey" part of Kensington and the pleasant walk from Ken High Street or from Gloucester Road will raise you expectations. And indeed everything we ate today was nicely cooked, carefully presented, and the variety of tastes and textures from individual ingredients was clearly perceptible. So good quality cooking here, and if the food doesn't quite have the sheer intensity of what I might expect at Gordon Ramsay's flagship, or Marcus Wareing, or Pollen Street Social, well maybe its appropriate to recall that It isn't rated or priced quite so highly either. And you get good bread ( very good actually), a tasty canapé, an interesting Amuse Bouche, and a few petits fours with the coffee. We chose from the lunch menu, as many around us seemed to do . Pleasingly we got food that I'm sure represented what this restaurant was capable of, and sadly that isn't always the case in London's restaurant at the moment where there sometimes seems to be a touch of "made down to a price" about the lunch menu that din't seem to happen so much a few years ago. But as I say not here and we left after three decent courses each ( and the bits) quite unable to consider even a coffee for the next couple of hours. A word about the service though- we were booked in for 1pm, and though we were a minute or two early it still seemed to be a half hour before we got menus. In fact we'd ordered and started our bottle of wine before we'd seen a menu. We found this odd. Unless of course the front of house's job is to give the kitchen an easy life by controlling the pace of orders hitting the kitchen? If so I think that's bizarre, and a kitchen working to give each diner an appropriately paced experience seems more the right way round to me. That aside the service from all the fairly numerous people who came to our table was pleasant and very competent.. We were there for 21/4 hours for three courses and coffee which is longer than I'd expect though it caused no problems. Our bill for 3 course set lunches, coffee, a bottle of a pleasant Languedoc which was certainly, at £30 , from the lower end of their list, and coffee/service came to a fraction under £130. I had intended to comment on this though my wife reminds me that we more usually eat two courses for lunch. She's quite right, and of course we have the numerous "extras" , so I'm ending up with a view that value seems about right. Will we go again? Well maybe albeit that this is quite a well-populated segment , with some good quality from Murano, Chez Bruce, Kitchen W8, Chiswick's La Trompette and so on that will give Launceston Place a run for its money on flavours and value.
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Mr. Tim Z

26 January 2013  
Slight note of caution – on a good day you will have a fantastic dinner at this lovely restaurant tucked away in Kensington. On a bad day service and kitchen can be overwhelmed and you'll have to wait. However, food quality is outstanding and atmosphere great. Also great for a romantic evening out
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Mr. Kevin Y

09 August 2012  
Had a very pleasant evening with a client. Discreet, elegant, but still with some vitality. Like the skylight ceiling, too
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Mr. Paul H

27 March 2012  
Our visit to Launceston Place in March 2012 was a memorable one. The food was excellent and the service was unobtrusive but attentive. The decor is really classy but not over the top meaning we felt really comfotable from the start. Unfortunately the taster menu was not available nor was the pigeon (or there would have been more 10's) but the fried hen's egg and the scallops were lovely, the beef cut like butter and lemon sole with shrimps was the best we have tasted. It is pricey but worth it (just!) We will return.
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Mr. David Joseph C

29 May 2011  
I want to be calamitous about a review every now and then because I think – in my fusspot way – that nothing is ever perfect or altogether up to scratch. Restaurants, like human beings, are meant to fail and disappoint occasionally, then pick themselves up, dust themselves off, and progress forward with a lesson learnt. It’s a struggle however to fail Launceston Place, as when I visited it delivered sublime results and ticked boxes across the board. The corridor coils around the restaurant and seats diners at white-linen tables with plush, dark grey leather upholstery. There are moody pictures on the walls of winter landscapes and the room buzzes with murmurings from wealthy Chelsea folk and silver-haired executives contemplating the extensive wine list. The service was impeccable and always on hand with water refills and bread: sourdough or wholemeal? I had an interesting conversation with our Sommelier, who indulged me in my attempt to fool him with my knowledge of New World wines, as I sipped on my fourth glass of Albarino (£37 bottle). We ordered the set-lunch menu at £20 as there didn’t seem to be much difference between this and the £60 tasting menu. It was agreed that neither of us were in the mood, or had the luxury of time, to spread ourselves across six enduring courses of petite samplings. Both menus consisted of enticing descriptions: ‘Hand dived west coast scallops, wild sorrel and apple; Tamworth suckling pig, radishes and honey emulsion; free range chicken breast, smoked egg, wild girolles; partridge cooked in whisky and heather, oats.’ Poncy parsnip crisps were on every table, sprinkled with paprika. They’re one of those unique staples from a restaurant that you can only ever really experience in a specific setting, and stand them apart from other establishment gimmicks. Maybe they’re a subtle plea to the Michelin imprimatur so they can swiftly raise the prices to more typically Kensingtonian levels. We were treated to a complimentary appetizer of a little amuse-bouche of carrot velouté with cauliflower foam. It was warm and strong tasting and went down lovely. Next was the potted foie gras and Maldon sea salt which was wonderful in presentation and delivery. Reports on the spider crab risotto with lashings of garlic butter – which arrived warm and soft in its shell – were glowing. We both chose the very British braised wild hare, pistachio butter, chicory and pear salad, which was so humble in presentation in a small, white serving dish, and tasted so fresh and rich that it was worth taking a moment’s reflection for that fluffy little hare. Our main course wine was a 2006 Barbera D’Alba, Fides, Pio Cesare at £85 a bottle, and was firm, moderately intense and made for a hazy lunchtime thrill. Tristan Welch, who has switched the menu from the haughty French style to a more warming British approach, is surely on the path to more glittering plaudits. It’s also worth noting that the junior sous chef, Steve Groves, won Masterchef: The Professionals 2009. Michel Roux Jnr said that ‘Steve showed not only great knowledge of classical cooking but also proved that he could master modern techniques.’ The wine list is interminable (expensive too if you don’t pick scrupulously). This place prides itself on its wine just as much as the food. There’s even a 1993 Domaine de la Romanee-Conti for £3,300. Three-thousand and three-hundred pounds! That’s a secondhand BMW, a two-week Mediterranean cruise, eight hundred bottles of Blue Nun! I had banana sticky toffee pudding with Guinness ice cream for dessert. As these places do, the pudding itself was small and delicate looking with artistic swishes and swirls across the plate. The Guinness ice cream was delicious. From the cheese trolley we picked a mature Cheddar, Stilton and a ripe Stinking Bishop, all served with toast or biscuits. It’s all very South Ken and was apparently Princess Diana’s local and favourite. It’s not my local, by some mileage, but is defiantly now one of my favourites.
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william L

27 May 2011  
Allthough Mr Walsh was not in the kichen during my visit, his deputised head chef and team oversaw a wonderfull service on the day The homebaked bread with the herb butter was utterly delicious, as far as I could see most of the dinners were eating from the set lunch menu which is incredibly good value considering the quality of the food The onglet of rose veal was drop dead meltingly gorgeous and I know from comments of other diners I was not the only person to think so, the sommellier was very attentive and steered me to a perfect wine for the food, even if it was a litlle above my usual budget it had good age weight and depth. over all a lovely experience with very good service
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Mr. Ross Y

16 November 2010  
went to lunch here with 2 friends – its better atmosphere at dinner however lunch was good. The 3 course set lunch is good value, the starters were average , beetroot risotto was in fact not risotto just thinly sliced/chopped beetroot – and the duck egg was not quite right, not cooked. The mains were good and the service was quick and efficient if a little impersonal. Wine list was wide spread and inclusive – desserts were nice (toffee pudding – was good) – 2 bottles of wine and the 3 courses came in at £260 with tip which wasn't bad – would recommend – but if you want a little more variation go for the a la carte menu and maybe save that for dinner!
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