French Restaurants in Chelsea
1. Bibendum French restaurant in Chelsea 81 Fulham Rd - SW3
“The iconic architecture of the Michelin building”, in South Kensington, helps make its first-floor dining room (converted by Sir Terence Conran, and opened in 1987) a modern classic, and provides a “stunning” location for a meal (in particular at lunch). Claude Bosi is entering his third year at the stoves now, and wins strong praise from most diners for his “first-class-but-rich” French cuisine, which creates some “wow” moments. A minority, though, feel the cooking here “is not up to the very high standard Bosi set when in Ludlow and Mayfair”, and consider prices “exorbitant”: “I thought tiny, overpriced portions of nouvelle cuisine were a thing of the past… until I ate here”.
2. Bibendum Oyster Bar Fish & seafood restaurant in Chelsea Michelin House, 81 Fulham Road - SW3
“Expensive for what it is but very enjoyable” – the unchanging equation over the years at this luxurious seafood café, off the beautiful and atmospheric foyer of the Michelin building. Nowadays part of Claude Bosi’s regime, he has added hot items (fish pie, moules, fish ’n’ chips etc) to an offer that has traditionally focussed on raw seafood and cold platters.
3. Gordon Ramsay French restaurant in Chelsea 68-69 Royal Hospital Rd - SW3
“Are people just deducting points because it has Gordon’s name?” – that’s the suspicion raised by fans of the world-famous TV-chef, who – like Michelin – consider his modern French cuisine “simply unbeatable”, and extol his “early-noughties-time-warp-style” Chelsea HQ (currently presided over by head chef Matt Abé) as “the best in London”. The answer is no! – the problem is the equally sizeable number of diners who feel “safety first is the word here”, and that by the standards of top, world-class culinary genius it “doesn’t really hit the mark”: “OK-ish, but too often run-of-the-mill” or “merely average (except for the price… which is outrageous!)”.
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