We knew it wouldn’t be long before Food and Travel’s Chef of the Year 2016 popped up behind a pass after leaving The Woodford last autumn, it was just a case of where. When we heard it was Launceston Place, a restaurant that had just been docked its star by The Michelin Guide, it confirmed what we thought to be true: Ben Murphy has balls. Clearly tasked with restoring the restaurant – famously Princess Diana’s favourite – to its former glory, he’s putting his reputation on the line. But with ability comes confidence and Murphy has plenty of both. He starts the show with red pepper ‘Jammy Dodgers’ that featured at The Woodford and from there works through the gears. Carrot with lovage and caraway is a beautifully presented and restrained in its spicing, while octopus with chorizo and chicken wing comes coloured in a crimson that’s as deep as the flavour. Monkfish with banana and Roscoff onion is unusual but delicious, though all that pales before presa Iberica – the finest incarnation of pork you will try. Murphy’s got stars in his eyes and this is his Place to shine.
This article was published on 10th May 2017 so certain details may not be up to date.