As one of Chelsea’s oldest and most classic French restaurants, Vicky Smith finds Le Colombier to be full of charm, authentic French food and good company

La Colombier has been serving a slice of first-rate French fare to the discerning diners of Chelsea since 1998. Sixteen years on, it’s still buzzing on a Friday lunchtime, with tables occupied by chic lone diners requiring nothing more than a newspaper and glass of rose for company, couples who have clearly frequented the restaurant’s chic and stylish dining room since it opened, and ladies who lunch tucking into glistening towers of seafood with glee.

The quintessentially French menu lends itself to a lingering lunch – who wouldn’t want to dedicate a good couple of hours (at least) to such delights as stak tartare, fois gras and filet de boeuf?

Aside from the traditional – and perfectly executed – French classics, there’s now a dedicated seafood menu too, from which you can create your very own Fruits de Mer selection. There’s oysters, Dublin Bay prawns, lobster, crab and whelks to choose from, and everything is impeccably fresh and divine. There’s obviously a selection of superb wines to available that perfectly partner your selection of crustaceans, too, so all that’s left for you to do is sit back, relax, and get to grips with the claw crackers… Bon Appetit.

145 Dovehouse Street, Chelsea SW3 6LB; 020 7351 1155; le-colombier-restaurant.co.uk 

Like what you see?

Sign up to The Resident newsletter for even more news, views and things to do in London, delivered direct to your inbox once a week