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Claude Bosi at Bibendum

Restaurants, French South Kensington
4 out of 5 stars
4 out of 5 stars
(5user reviews)
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Time Out says

4 out of 5 stars

Bibendum first opened 30 years ago and the Terence Conran-run Chelsea restaurant is now a bona fide London institution. For a start, there’s that building: the massive old Michelin House, a spectacular art deco pile and one of the city’s most striking bits of architecture. Wander in and up, through the cavernous former garage forecourt (now Bibendum’s oyster bar), and you’ll find London’s nattiest dining room. With grey leather banquettes, fine art and those awesome Michelin Man-stained glass windows, it’s an absolute picture.

Gawp all you want, but you come here to eat. Bibendum is now home to French fine dining powerhouse Claude Bosi. Both classical and dizzyingly technical, he previously earned two Michelin stars for his old Mayfair gaff Hibiscus, and his return to the scene at Bibendum is a BIG DEAL for London food nerds. Those who can afford it.

The food is overwhelmingly excellent, down to the amuse-bouches. There were delicate choux pastry gougères, puffing cheesy fragrance when chomped, and cute little ‘ice cream’ cones of foie gras (too literally chilly, mind) that disappeared in two bites. All wonderfully meticulous.

A starter of veal sweetbread with black garlic was a blinder (shiny glaze on the meat and all), the spongy offal dense and creamy and the whole lot groaning with deep green, garlicky gremolata. Cornish cock crab with white and pickled baby peaches looked gorgeous, but the layer of over-floral, just-set jelly that covered it won’t be for all. The turbot grenobloise (in a brown butter sauce with capers) that followed, apparently a Hibiscus throwback, was a banger, though.

Okay, it’s unnervingly expensive – a set £85 a head for three courses and around £40 for the cheapest bottle of vino, reflective of its two-Michelin-star status. But as bucket list joints go, it’s up there with the best of them. Company dime? Rich aunt? Insurance payout? Blow the budget and be blown away.

Details

Address: Michelin House
London
SW3 6RD
Cross street: 81 Fulham Road
Transport: Tube: South Kensington tube
Price: Dinner for two with drinks and service: around £240.
Contact:
Opening hours: Lunch served noon-2.30pm Mon-Fri; 12.30-3pm Sat, Sun. Dinner served 7-11pm Mon-Sat; 7-10.30pm Sun
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Users say (5)

4 out of 5 stars

Average User Rating

4.2 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:3
  • 4 star:1
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:1
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|5
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tastemaker

Had a fantastic meal at Bibendum, housed in the former headquarters of Michelin. The building itself is worth visiting, with its Art Deco style and stained glass windows starring the Michelin man himself, named Bibendum..! The restaurant is located on the first floor, where you have to go through their unassuming oyster bar and a set of stairs. However, the dining room is a generous space with a tall ceiling, and a set of glass doors offering a glimpse into the kitchen.

The food was excellent, every course was well thought-out and delicious. (1) The first course here was Cornish crab with brown crab cream, topped with smoked herring jelly. (2) Sea urchin (3) Turbot a la Grenobloise (4) Veal sweetbreads with seaweed butter (not a fan of offal but this was so good!) (5) Braised loin of pork with langoustine and (6) Apple dessert.

The amusè bouche and plate cleansers were equally on point, including my favourite which was a tiny foie gras ice cream!

Food - 5 ⭐️

Ambience - 5 ⭐️

Service - 5 ⭐️

Value - 4 ⭐️

Overall - 4.5 ⭐️

tastemaker

How can you not love see that great big happy Michelin man!   Paired with the vintage tiled as of a by-gone era. This spot is a gem, located in the original Michelin Tyre Plant and the heart Chelsea.  The oyster bar is divine and the unique combination of a flower shop, bakery, champagne bar and restaurant keep it classy. There is even a Conran shop attached. Loved it.


A favourite.  Manages to be both quite 'smart' without being stuffy.  The food is very much classic French and there's nowt wrong with that. The ongoing influence of Simon Hopkinson (another favourite of mine)  is clear to see and a joy. The service has always been excellent and frankly my only complaints are that a) I can't afford to go there more often and b) the sheer size of the wine menu, whilst being impressive (it's as thick as several phone books), is completely impractical- I'd happily settle for a curated, shorted tome. Now I want to go again...


Have walked past the restaurant many times to admire the Michelin man and finally decided to stop in for a late dinner. They were so accommodating and the service was superb. The food was excellent. Altogether a wonderful experience.


Very poor service ; ordered cocktails which did not arrive but have been conveniently added to our bill. Rabbit main course was way to salty, to the brink of losing any taste of the food. We had to wave our hads like semaphors , to getextra bread, wine or water to the table. We ended up paying quite a large bill for a very average meal and service. Living in the neighbourhood this used to be one of my usual spots for dinner; don't think so any more as this is the second time in a row I am being exposed to bad service and average food

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