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“excellent cuisine needs more polished front of house”
Review of La Becasse - CLOSED

La Becasse
Price range: $26 - $65
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine, Business meetings, Special occasions, Romantic
Dining options: Late Night, Dinner, Lunch, Reservations
Dining style: Fine Dining
Transit: Ludlow Train Station 5 mins.
Description: La Bécasse offers award-winning fine dining in the picturesque town of Ludlow.The stunning oak-panelled restaurant and state-of-the art kitchens behind the scenes under the guidance of Head Chef Will Holland, attracted attention from the moment it opened as the sister restaurant to Berkshire restaurant L’ortolan, where chef patron Alan Murchison has held his Michelin star since 2003.Building on his life-long passion for cooking and the finest seasonal, ingredients, Chef Will Holland and his brigade work closely with local suppliers and producers, and wherever possible use produce that is ‘Local to Ludlow’.Since opening the doors in July 2007, the team at La Bécasse has been earning awards and accolades. A prestigious Michelin Star was awarded in January 2009; before that La Bécasse became Ludlow’s only restaurant with three AA Rosettes, was included in Harden’s Restaurant Guide as well as The Good Food Guide published by Which?, and was voted "Best Fine Dining Restaurant" in the West Midlands by Metro within four months of launching.“Fine dining should not be exclusive, pretentious or an intimidating experience,” says Chef Will Holland. "At La Bécasse we aim to provide great food, knowledgeable and professional service, and memorable experiences for all our guests. Winning a Michelin star within 18 months of opening is an acknowledgement of the huge effort that every member of the team has put in since we started.”
Reviewed March 10, 2013

I really dont want the reader to feel negative about this review ---we had a very pleasant evening at Becasse for a family celebration - we had excellent food ( more later ) and delightful wine but I think the front of house experience could be a little more polished. These are tiny points but if like me you enjoy fine dining and are prepared to trump up the funds to do it, then if La Becasse is going to regain its star, the restaurant must match a price tag of £110 per head in terms of its performance.
We arrived and were greeted by the manager and shown to a room upstairs for aperitif drinks, and how lovely that was to relax on a sofa before going to table. So far so good. We were then passed to a young lady --delightful person - but with a gravy stain on her front - who served the drinks and a few nibbles. After 10mins or so we were given the menus and wine list and began to choose - then rather a period of time elapsed during which no-body came to speak to us and my guests had finished their champagne ( we ARE fine diners not guzzelers ) so there was a reasonable interval, but the staff could have sold another round of drinks if they had been a little more attentive. The menu choice settled I ordered the wines from the same waitress not a sommellier and so having listened to me she went away but had to come back to verify the order and to ask me to show her the page on the list - ie she doesnt know her list as she is not a sommellier. Please none of this is a tragedy --far from it -- the young lady in question is a delightful person but if the restaurant really wants to up its game these are the points that need addressing.
when we were called through to table we were served sparkling water by one new staff member and I asked for the Menetou Salon to come with the mise -en -bouche. This was then served by ?a wine waiter/ sommellier - yet another person anyway. When the food came we met a charming frenchman from New Orleans --staff member number 5 - all delightful but I finally gave in as to who precisely was looking after us that night!!None of them volunteered that information at any stage and so the cossetting part of being entertained was missing and the personal touch didnt quite materialise.
Food --admirable cuisine --a veritable explosion of fine flavours from the little satay and then crab and curried carrot soup amuse bouches to my son in law's hallibut with vanilla foam which had him mumbling words of pleasure all the way through to my excellent rare beef from Hereford just down the road cooked to perfection and generously portioned with a red wine reduction ( could have done with a tiny sauce boat as the sauce "ran out" before the beef ) again fussing but a lovely touch with such delectable food. Our red wine, a Clos Henri from the Marlborough estate in NZ, was fabulous and the desserts ended a superb meal.My son in law however had cheese which again was mature and incredibly tasty but as there was red wine left over he was the one to finish it as we were on sweet desserts but no-one was around to serve him so I did it myself
Please go --this critique is written by a fussy old man who would like to see Becasse succeed and to do that it needs an observant manager who checks his staffs' uniforms, looks at peoples' glasses to see when they are empty, introduces a responsible staff member for the duration, and just keeps an eye on timings a little more closely than was the case for us. I wish them all success - and can't wait to return - but more than anything I hope my review is positive critique rather than negative.

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2  Thank Christopher067
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (514)
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253 - 257 of 514 reviews

Reviewed March 9, 2013

My husband and I enjoyed the tasting menu here. A tad expensive but worth it. The cheese board was magnificent! Very small so booking recommended

Thank bekkit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 5, 2013

On my visit last year I could not fault this restaurant and was looking forward to a return visit, unfortunately my next visit did not match up to expectations.
The staff all seemed new and untrained or under-trained, so we did not get the same welcome as we did from the Matt Lucas look alike last year. Also, they do not seem to have a sommelier anymore? the very good Gregory had gone, such a shame as those two members of staff gave the place some gravitas and style, which it now lacks.
The crispy parmesan and parsnip and honey sauce was lovley, but when I asked a waiter what the small soft balls were he told me it was a crouton, it was in fact a turned parsnip!
My 3 scallops and parsnips were good too, but when my venison also arrived with parsnip accompaniment I was beginning to wonder if parsnips were the only veg??? However as it happened these parsnips were undercooked, so I left them. The Venison was rather under seasoned and the curly kale was a little bitter with it. I did not get much feedback when I told the waiter of the undercooked parsnips and lack of taste to the venison. A very underwhelming dish. My husbands main of fish, had what looked like tinned sweetcorn on it, which was covered in a vanilla foam. I think Vanilla is best kept for pudding, or the bathroom! So another underwhelming dish. Pudding was small and not presented as you would expect for a £65 menu.
I can see why this restaurant has lost its star.
Not worth £200.

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2  Thank foodygirl2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 5, 2013

An excellent lunch at Le Becasse as always. The only slight niggle was that my wife wanted the shorter lunch menu, whereas I wanted the taster menu, but we were told this was not possible. i do think that, as we accepted that courses would not be served all at the same time, they should be flexible enough to accommodate that. However this was a minor niggle, and the rest of the service was exemplary.

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Thank MDSDerby
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 1, 2013

My partner took me away and booked a surprise dinner here. We enjoy fine dining and had seen Mr Holland on Great British Menu and like his ideas. We were not disappointed !! We chose from the A la Carte menu and the food was excellent on all courses. The presentation was excellent, we also liked the fact that at no stage did we feel rushed or pressured to finish our food. This lead to a fully relaxed evening. The choice of cheeses for the cheese board left us in a dillema as to what to pick finally thanks for introducing us to red Sancerre wine excellent accompaniment to our meal.

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Thank Ian N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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