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Gavroche London Top Restaurant; Oxo Overpriced: Harden’s

Michel Roux Jr.
Chef Michel Roux Jr. stands outside Le Gavroche in London, U.K. The restaurant has won awards including for the capital's best restaurant. Source: Richard Vines/ Bloomberg News.

Le Gavroche is London’s top restaurant, Clos Maggiore best for romance and the Wolseley is the first choice for business and breakfast, according to Harden’s.

The Oxo Tower restaurant is the most overpriced and has the most disappointing cooking, according to the guide’s annual online survey, which was completed by 9,000 diners.

Michel Roux Jr.’s Le Gavroche in Mayfair holds two Michelin stars and has been open since 1967. For the first time it received the most Harden’s nominations for best meal.

Roux becomes only the seventh chef in the survey’s 23-year history to preside over the finest restaurant. He follows Pierre Koffmann, Joel Antunes, Gordon Ramsay, Marcus Wareing, Brett Graham and Heston Blumenthal.

The main top 10 ranking also sees debuts by two new restaurants, Dabbous and Medlar, while Ramsay drops out after a 12-year run (1997-2008) as chef of the top restaurant.

Restaurant Gordon Ramsay was the second most-nominated for having the most pricey food, and in third place for most disappointing cooking. The new London outpost of another Michelin chef, Ametsa with Arzak Instruction, makes the list for cuisine below expectations.

For the ninth straight year, “London’s Favorite Restaurant,” based on the number of survey nominations, is Bruce Poole’s Chez Bruce, whose standards belie its Wandsworth location, according to the guide’s editors.

The average price of dinner for one, including half a bottle of wine, coffee and service, is now 47.68 pounds ($76.65). Prices have risen by 3.5 percent in the past 12 months, at a slightly higher rate than inflation.

Harden’s Rankings
The previous year’s position in parentheses and * for new

1    Le Gavroche (3)
2    The Ledbury (2)
3    Dinner (1)
4    Chez Bruce (5)
5    Pollen Street Social (6)
6    Marcus Wareing (4)
7    Dabbous*
8    The Square (7)
9    Medlar*
10  Pied a Terre(8)

1    Chez Bruce (1)
2    Le Gavroche (5)
3    The Wolseley (6)
4    Le Caprice (7)
5    J Sheekey (3)
6    The Delaunay (-)
7    Trinity (9)
8    The Ledbury (-)
9    Pollen Street Social (4)
10   The River Cafe (10)


Best for business:
The Wolseley, The Square, The Delaunay, Galvin La Chapelle, The
Don, Bleeding Heart, L’Anima, Scott’s, 1 Lombard Street, Savoy

Best for romance:
Clos Maggiore, La Poule au Pot, Andrew Edmunds, Bleeding Heart,
Le Gavroche, Galvin at Windows, Chez Bruce, The Ritz Restaurant,
Le Caprice, Cafe du Marche.

Best breakfast/brunch:
The Wolseley, The Delaunay, Roast, Cecconi’s, Riding House Cafe,
Granger & Co., The Modern Pantry, Duck & Waffle, Smiths (Ground
Floor), Dean Street Townhouse.

Best bar/pub food:
The Anchor & Hope, Bull & Last, Harwood Arms, The Thomas Cubitt,
The Anglesea Arms, Grazing Goat, Canton Arms, The Gun, The
Orange, The Ladbroke Arms.

Most disappointing cooking:
Oxo Tower (Rest), Balthazar, Gordon Ramsay, Brasserie Zedel,
Colbert, Dinner, The Wolseley, The Ivy, Alain Ducasse, Ametsa
with Arzak Instruction.

Most overpriced restaurant:
Oxo Tower (Rest), Gordon Ramsay, The River Cafe, Dinner, Alain
Ducasse, Cut, Marcus Wareing, Le Gavroche, The Ivy, Pollen
Street Social.

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