London’s only duck restaurant opens in Clerkenwell

Monsieur Le Duck, London’s only duck restaurant, has celebrated the launch of its first fully dedicated restaurant with plans to open more.

The restaurant was designed to bring the food and wine of south west France to London. Owner Richard Humphreys was inspired by the “douceur de vivre” of Gascony (sweetness of living) and offers a menu focusing on duck, chips, salad and wine.

The restaurant is based in Clerkenwell and set over two floors. Its opening follows a six month stint as a pop up restaurant near Liverpool Street which prompted a move to a permanent location.

Humphreys, a frequent traveller to Gascony, has designed Monsieur Le Duck to be an “authentic portal to a land of relaxed eating and drinking”. With the success of Clerkenwell, he has been inspired to expand the brand across the capital.

The menu includes confit Moulard duck leg, pan fried or chargrilled Moulard duck breast and a 100% Barbary duck leg minced burger accompanied with homemade prune mayo and baby gem lettuce.

Monsieur Le Duck will be offering “carefully selected” wines, focusing on south west France; available by the glass, carafe or bottle. The wines will be complemented by signature Armagnac-based aperitifs and French beers.

Humphrys said: “The idea to open a duck restaurant had been kicking around for a while. I had been craving good quality duck following a number of family holidays to Gascony. Last year we decided to just go for it and open a pop up near Liverpool Street. It all happened very quickly. It was only two and a half weeks from finding the site to opening the doors to the public. One of the highlights was hosting Jay Rayner who gave us the most incredible review, so we can’t have done a bad job.

“Duck is a relatively unexplored meat in the UK but the health and sustainable benefits make it a great alternative to beef. The carbon footprint of duck is actually one fifth of that of beef and lamb. It contains more iron than beef. Duck fat also has a melting temperature of 14 degrees Celsius, whereas beef is 45 degrees Celsius. This means your body will processes the fat a lot easier than other red meats.”

He added: “The best part so far of Monsieur Le Duck has been seeing French people flocking to the restaurant. We actually have plans to open a few more sites in the future, starting with London then looking further afield in Europe, Asia and the US. I would love to open one in Paris at some point, just for the cheek of it.”

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