RestaurantsLondonMayfairW1

Restaurant Closed

This restaurant is closed.

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Breaking news

BOMBSHELL PRESS RELEASE: Chef Michel Roux has announced the upcoming closure of the iconic Le Gavroche restaurant site at 43 Upper Brook Street. After 56 years of trading, the restaurant will close its doors in January 2024, although ‘Le Gavroche’ name will continue to be a familiar presence in popups both at home and abroad, as well as in Michel’s other ventures.

survey result

Summary

£160
£££££
3
Good
3
Good
4
Very Good
* Based on a three course dinner, half a bottle of wine, coffee, cover charge, service and VAT.

“Perfect in so many ways” – Michel Albert Roux’s Mayfair legend is part of the nation’s gastronomic history. It was the first UK restaurant to win three Michelin stars in 1982 after his father Albert moved it to this basement near the former US embassy from its original Chelsea site. And it has been ably run by MasterChef judge Michel since 1992, when père moved over for fils (since which time it has held two stars). “The entrance leads to a small bar for pre-dinner drinks (arrive early), with a staircase down to the main restaurant”: an old-fashioned space – all “soft furnishings and discreet dividers” – whose 1980s decor has a certain retro charm. Old traditions are maintained – for example, “some diners are surprised that only the person named in the reservation has prices shown on their menu”. “Classic French cuisine is served with style and reverence: dishes are very much ‘old-school’” and prepared with “flair and skill”. “The wine list is to drool over”, “if you have time to read it (it’s so long!)”. “Michel himself works the room, which adds to the experience”, greeting guests in his whites, and with a longstanding team, including twins Sylvia & Ursula Perbersschlager managing the show. Post-Covid, the restaurant significantly cut its opening times, and – perhaps due to the pressures of soaring costs – concerns over value since the pandemic have taken ratings from being outstanding to merely good. Many guests still say “prices are reasonable given the excellent cooking and unique sense of occasion”; but there is a growing minority of regretful regulars for whom the experience is just “not as good as on previous visits”, with some meals plain “disappointing”. The lack of lunchtime service is a particular issue (“this was my favourite restaurant and lunch was a treat, but unfortunately it’s no longer offered and we simply can’t afford to eat there anytime. The prices are horrendous”). For the majority, though, it’s still “worth it for a special blow out” and “there is a long waiting list so you need to book well in advance”. Top Menu Tip – “the double cooked cheese souffle is incredible”. BREAKING NEWS: in mid-August 2023, Michel announced that Le Gavroche will close in January 2024. Up till that point there will be a series of special dinners… but good luck getting a booking! In fact, given the fact that all available seats at the restaurant are pretty much now taken, we’ve listed it as closed.

Summary

£147
£££££
4
Very Good
3
Good
4
Very Good
* Based on a three course dinner, half a bottle of wine, coffee, cover charge, service and VAT.

“The pinnacle of traditional French cuisine”“Michel Roux Jr’s grand dame of London restaurants” is a cornerstone of “old-school brilliance”. “Others may be more avant-garde, but if you want the classics, there’s nowhere better” than this subterranean Mayfair venue, founded by his late father Albert and run by Michel since 1992. Under the former, it was the first UK restaurant with three Michelin stars, and has held two since 1993. “Some consider it old-fashioned” or even “dated”-looking (the décor is somewhat “akin to an old-style cruise ship of the 1980s”). But most reporters feel “it has what you want for a special night out”: “classic Gallic cuisine of a kind that is hard to find even in France nowadays” delivered in a supremely cosseting setting (“the deep carpets, low hum of conversation and huge portraits of generations of Roux talent tell you you’re in for a treat”). “Staff are knowledgeable and attentive, without being stuffy”, although a decline in the service rating from its former formidable peak, perhaps reflects the fact that some diners feel “service is not as sharp of late – we miss Emanuel Landré!” (who relinquished the reins as GM to twins Sylvia & Ursula Perberschlager a couple of years ago). And, of course, there’s no hiding that a meal here “costs an arm and a leg”, particularly now that – due to post-Brexit staffing shortages – there is no longer the option of the much-mourned, marvellous-value set lunch (cancelled when the restaurant became dinner-only). Its food rating this year was more borderline, perhaps as a result. Still, “look up ‘fine dining’ in the dictionary and chances are a picture of Le Gavroche will appear before long”; and despite the ups and downs of recent times, the overall verdict is that it is “still keeping on top of its game”. The fact that “Michel Roux regularly takes the time to speak with customers is an added bonus”. Top Menu Tips – “The twice-baked cheese soufflé remains rightly famous as the stuff of many a fantasy last meal; and the epic cheese trolley really is a sight to behold”. And, of course, the cellar is special here too: “a wonderfully deep wine list because of the establishment’s longevity”.

Summary

£140
£££££
4
Very Good
5
Exceptional
4
Very Good
* Based on a three course dinner, half a bottle of wine, coffee, cover charge, service and VAT.

“Quite simply, the epitome of what a restaurant should be!” – Michel Roux’s “elegant”, if old-fashioned Mayfair icon remained a place of ultimate celebration for many reporters before, during the interregna from, and after the lockdowns. Nowhere in London epitomises French gastronomy more than this traditionally decorated basement – the first restaurant in the UK to hold three Michelin stars (and with two since 1993). Its “classic dishes seem more exquisite than ever through enforced absence” and “the welcome you get is second to none”. On the downside: bills, as ever, are “stratospheric”; the odd reporter finds the approach “dated”; and its ratings risked slipping this year. Also, “tragically they have had to suspend their prix fixe lunch – the best deal in London! – because of staff shortages caused by beastly Brexit and Covid” (since summer 2021 it has been open for dinner only). While that persists, it’s “only a goer if you have deep pockets”. In September 2021, Emanuel Landré the GM stepped back, leaving sisters, Sylvia and Ursula Perberschlager, who have been at Le Gavroche for 17 years, as co-managers. (Footnote – Le Gavroche’s original founders, Michel Roux’s uncle, Michel, and his father, Albert – both passed away since our last survey, in March 2020 and January 2021 respectively. The debt owed by the UK restaurant industry to the Roux Bros is phenomenal.)

Summary

£140
£££££
4
Very Good
5
Exceptional
4
Very Good
* Based on a three course dinner, half a bottle of wine, coffee, cover charge, service and VAT.

“Elegance… discreet service… classic French cuisine – they never go out of fashion”, and nowhere else in London can match Michel Roux Jr’s “grande dame of the London restaurant scene” for “perfect, old-school Gallic gastronomy”. Founded (on Sloane Street) in 1967 by his father Albert, this famous culinary temple has operated in Mayfair just around the corner from the former US embassy since 1982 and with MasterChef-maestro Michel at the stoves since 1991. Menus (with no prices in the lady’s version) are perused in the smallish ground floor lounge, before descending to the “dark and moody basement with its elaborate table ornaments”. To a few doubters the style is too “stuffy and formal” (or, alternatively, too dated and 1980s-tastic) – but to most visitors (some of whom are regulars of many decades’ standing) the milieu makes it “one of the capital’s best dining rooms, setting the perfect scene for any posh liaison”; with “soft furnishings and a layout that means one may hear and converse in quiet and relative privacy; and where it’s refreshing to find the standard of dress amongst the patrons still includes a suit and tie”. “Attention to detail and personal enjoyment shows in every aspect of the experience”: cooking is “superbly judged both in its selection and preparation”, and the “wine list is the work of an afternoon – hugely pleasurable to read and to attempt to absorb its width and variety!”. “Smooth, unobtrusive service” under maître d’ Emmanuel Landré, is “impeccable”“ideally pitched from when you step through the door to the final farewell”; and Michel (usually in attendance) “is a charmer as well as a brilliant chef”, with “the personal visit from Le Patron making a special meal very special”. The bill? “It’s barely affordable, but worth saving for”: “a classic example of the rule, ‘you get what you pay for’ and, while expensive, good value for money”. Top Tip – “the renowned set lunch deserves every bit of its reputation”: “perhaps the best value prix fixe deal in town” and “always a top experience”.

For 33 years we've been curating reviews of the UK's most notable restaurant. In a typical year, diners submit over 50,000 reviews to create the most authoritative restaurant guide in the UK. Each year, the guide is re-written from scratch based on this survey (although for the 2021 edition, reviews are little changed from 2020 as no survey could run for that year).

Have you eaten at Le Gavroche?

43 Upper Brook St, London, W1K 7QR

Restaurant details

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70
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Le Gavroche Restaurant Diner Reviews

Reviews of Le Gavroche Restaurant in W1, London by users of Hardens.com. Also see the editors review of Le Gavroche restaurant.
Stephen K
A great feeling of sadness knowing that one...
Reviewed 6 months, 28 days ago

"A great feeling of sadness knowing that one of the best and classiest restaurant in London would be shutting and this may be my last time here. Everything was perfect - as expected."

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Prices

  Cost Availability Courses
Menu1 186.00 Always available 1

Traditional European menu

Starter Main Veggies Pudding
£23.00 £64.50 £0.00 £22.60
Drinks  
Wine per bottle £55.00
Filter Coffee £5.00
Extras  
Bread £0.00
Service 12.50%
43 Upper Brook St, London, W1K 7QR
Opening hours
MondayCLOSED
Tuesday5 pm‑10 pm
Wednesday5 pm‑10 pm
Thursday5 pm‑10 pm
Friday5 pm‑10 pm
Saturday5 pm‑10 pm
SundayCLOSED

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