L'Ortolan

4.5
1609 reviews
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£41 and over
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Contemporary French
Top tags:
  • Special Occasions
  • Good for Anniversaries
  • Tasting Menu
L'Ortolan is a Michelin Starred fine dining restaurant with private dining rooms located in the picturesque village of Shinfield, Berkshire. Housed within a beautiful Grade Two listed vicarage L'Ortolan offers a relaxed & informal fine dining experience. L'Ortolan has won numerous awards including a Michelin Star for the fifteenth consecutive year, 3 AA rosettes & a place in the Sunday Times Top 20 restaurants in the UK in 2016. Head Chef Tom Clarke's inspired menus include Menu du Jour (£30 - £35 lunch only), A la Carte (£61 - £69), 7 Course Gourmand Tasting Menu (£79) and the 10 course Surprise Menu (£105) as well as seasonal offers and wine tasting dinners. Our Sommeliers are on hand to suggest the perfect wine or flight of wines to accompany your meal. L'Ortolan also has a Chef's Table & three private dining rooms. For an alternative L'Ortolan experience guests are able to join the kitchen team and be a chef for a day with a "Chef's Experience".
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Private dining
Dining Style
Fine Dining
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Cuisines
Contemporary French
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Hours of Operation

LUNCH:
Tuesday - Saturday: 12:00PM - 02:00PM

DINNER:
Tuesday - Thursday: 07:00PM - 08:30PM
Friday - Saturday: 07:00PM - 09:00PM
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Phone number
0118 988 8500
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Payment Options
AMEX, Diners Club, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress Code
Smart Casual
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Executive Chef
Tom Clarke
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Catering
"Michelin at Home" experience available on request.
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Parking Details
We have a private car park located within the restaurant grounds We also offer disabled parking immediately in front of the restaurant.
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Public Transit
TRAIN :
Reading is easily accessible from London, just half an hour by train. L'Ortolan is a 10 minute taxi ride from Reading station.

BUS:
Routes 9 & 144 stop within a few minutes walk of the restaurant.
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Special Events & Promotions
Chef Masterclasses and Wine Dinners take place regularly. We also have three private dining rooms available with no additional room hire charge for corporate meetings or private functions. Please call 0118 988 8500 or see www.lortolan.com for more information.
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Gift Card
Additional
Banquet, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Fireplace, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Private Dining

For those extra special occasions, you can enjoy Tom Clarke's innovative Michelin starred cuisine in the exclusivity of your own private dining room – all with no room hire charge. Entertain and impress prospective clients or catch up with colleagues, friends or family in a private setting.

View Private Dining Details

Special Offers

Taste of Summer: £99 for two people

A sumptuous six course tasting menu by Head Chef Tom Clarke.

Terms and Conditions: Maximum of 6 diners. Includes Tax, excludes service.

Valid For: 2 - 6 people

Starts: 10 July 2018

Ends: 29 September 2018

Availability: Tue-Thu 12:00-14:00 19:00-20:30
Fri-Sat 12:00-14:00

1,000-Point Tables

See availability for 1,000 point tables

Tue - Sat 12:00PM - 1:30PM 7:00PM - 9:00PM

What 1609 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.5
service
4.3
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
88% of people would recommend it to a friend
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5.0Dined on 7 July 2018

Fantastic dining experience made even better by professional waiting staff and Lucian the fantastic Sommelier.

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5.0Dined on 6 July 2018

We came here for a celebratory lunch, following my graduation. The food was flawless and presented simply beautifully. We thoroughly enjoyed trying the new and exciting flavours on the menu, which all complementing each other in a surprising manner. The waiters were amazing and attended to us wonderfully. Without a doubt the best restaurant around and I cannot fault our experience. No surprise it’s eared it’s Michelin star.

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5.0Dined on 5 July 2018

Our second visit here and it delivered even more , beautiful tasting menu, very good Reginald with flavour explosions.

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5.0Dined on 3 July 2018

Had a wonderful meal for my partners birthday. Staff were welcoming and friendly. Food was amazing.

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5.0Dined on 30 June 2018

The whole place is amazing we have been coming for years and slightly even better than before. We loved the discovery menu and all of its delightful flavours. It is a whole evening when you come with drinks in garden or conservatory to the lovely restaurant which you sit it. Great night and will remember until next time thks

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5.0Dined on 28 June 2018

We had a wonderful time as always, brilliant, professional and courteous staff, food was fabulous too.

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5.0Dined on 27 June 2018

We enjoyed a gorgeous lunch on a beautiful sunny day - making the most of the garden outside.

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4.0Dined on 26 June 2018

the tasting menu was slightly disappointing as we had previously gone a la carte. It looked great - but we were all slightly disappointed by the quality/ taste of the food. The service was excellent, the people very knowledgeable, and overall we would not select the tasting menu again. The accompanying wines were not outstanding at all - although the dessert wine was excellent,

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3.0Dined on 22 June 2018

Service isn’t up to scratch for a one star Michelin restaurant. By the end of service the bar was full of dirty glasses, so when we took our coffee in there we were unfortunately amongst the washing up.

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5.0Dined on 14 June 2018

Food was excellent, service impeccable

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4.0Dined on 7 June 2018

Excellent food and very friendly and helpful staff

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5.0Dined on 5 June 2018

Excellent restaurant, staff very friendly and attentive. Altogether an excellent evening

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5.0Dined on 5 June 2018

Located in a small village, a very pretty manor house with lots of parking.

Fabulous service all the staff were very attentive and personable.

My partner and I had the tasting menu, over all it was very good (although several bones in my partners trout!) and the last dessert was very bitter and not pleasant to eat. That said everything else was lovely, including the bar area and the large selection of gins!

It was my birthday on the day, a little slate platter was presented saying "Happy Birthday" which was a lovely touch.

We would recommend this venue and will hopefully be returning in the future.

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4.0Dined on 5 June 2018

As a michilin star one, the value is good.

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2.0Dined on 1 June 2018

For a 1 Michelin Star we found the food less than par. The fried trout skin was soft and chewy when it should be crisp. The sauce with the quail was bland and lacking depth and the filo pastry on the quail parcel was way too oily. Across 10 dishes the Food really lacked imagination compared to its peers. It was disappointing given the standard one would expect at this level.
Service was friendly and approachable.

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5.0Dined on 26 May 2018

We chose to dine here for our 10th wedding anniversary and dye to one of being vegetarian and one not, the menu options were very impressive. We could both have the same divine eating experience which meant so much.

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3.0Dined on 25 May 2018

We recently had lunch at L'Ortolan, a year or so after our previous, reasonably successful visit. Our first problem was that we had to wait 45 minutes after our arrival for our starter, after admittedly having a premeal drink. Overall we were both rather disappointed, both in terms of quality, but also in terms of of quantity.

My wife had a beef tartar, which consisted of a roll of bread, a cold confit egg yolk and no more than a table spoon of beef, which my wife had difficulty in locating. I fared much better with a scallop and pork starter which was excellent, and included three decent size scallops (however it also included a £10 supplement).

Moving on to the main courses, which arrived quite promptly. My pork dish was OK, but contained 3 small discs of (slightly overdone) pork, and a range of peach confections. Again I considered the quantity of pork to be quite small.

My wife had a dish which had, as its focus, a white mix of ray and smoked eel, which rather dominated the taste of the dish. It was supposed to have morels, which neither of us could locate. The two fish were mixed together to the extent that we could not tell where the ray was. My wife did not care too much for the dish.

Our poor waiter kept coming back to ask how things were, and I think she did a great job keeping a smile on her face while trying to handle our kindly meant constructive criticisms. The restaurant did make efforts to help, including a free glass of wine, and also an extra dessert dish each, but we felt the damage had been done.

To finish off they got the bill wrong and we had to point out how.

We both consider that the meal was not good value (nearly £140 including wine), and we are very unlikely to return. I understand that the management of the restaurant has recently changed, but all I can say is that it hasn't changed for the better.

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5.0Dined on 24 May 2018

The staff were friendly and helpful. The food was fantastic - appearnce ws food, nd presentation and taste were out of this world.

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4.0Dined on 23 May 2018

lovely restaurant. excellent service. very good choice for special occasions

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5.0Dined on 22 May 2018

Excellent evening and really enjoyed the tasting experience (especially having watched so many food programmes).
Food was incredible and service great.
Won't be able to afford to do it very often but definitely glad we have tried it.

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5.0Dined on 16 May 2018

Very impressed with the discrete helpful and timely service. Light lunch menu just right for the occasion. Excellent wine by the glass not the typical vin ordinaire. Will remain top of my list for special occasions

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5.0Dined on 15 May 2018

What an absolutely delightful evening. The food - while to personal taste a little challenging (My wife had never before tried an oyster) - was simply....outstanding. But that as a review doesnt do justice.

My wife doesnt drink white wine.....No problem. The charming Somelier was able to match a number of red wines to every dish, including a fantastic little red from Italy for dessert - which was incredible, (my white also was).

The staff were warm and welcoming, BUT (and perhaps most importantly) without being "over attentive" as is the case in some lesser restaurants.

If you want a treat, and you dont want to make your bank account TOO sad, then definately try this gem for a fine dining restaurant.

And to the staff at L'Ortolan, I would like to say, quite simply.......Thank you.

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5.0Dined on 15 May 2018

Great setting and atmosphere, along with great service and food. A good example of fine dining.

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4.0Dined on 12 May 2018

The food was excellent and would definitely eat there again if the service improved. Whilst the staff were not unpleasant, it was by no means the normal service we have received at Michelin starred restaurants. Offered more bread which never came, we were never asked how our meal/courses were, the staff who served us were not at all friendly, although the ‘lower ranked’ serving staff were very friendly (all the staff in ‘suits’ were bordering rude and grumpy!)

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4.0Dined on 11 May 2018

Return visit after 23 years as moved away from Berkshire and had a wonderful evening with family. Food was delicious and superb wine list with discreet but attentive staff. Absolutely enjoyed ourselves and will definitely return.Had the 7 course Gourmand which was so good and opted for cheese course too.

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5.0Dined on 11 May 2018

We chose the 7 course tasting menu, as were booked in for a Friday night.
We had exciting and very well presented, tasty food
The food is imaginative and freshly prepared, special dietary requirements are easily accommodated for.
The wine is top quality and the sommelier certainly knows his stuff! Thank you!
We were treated to watching our red wine being decanted through a Murano glass filter! Wow, truly spectacular
To finish with the toffee apple pudding was the icing on the cake.

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5.0Dined on 10 May 2018

The food was excellent and the staff were wonderful - nothing was too much effort - overall and excellent meal and would definitely recommend highly!!

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5.0Dined on 10 May 2018

Amazing experience. Truly special!
The food was exquisite, service attentive and the setting beautiful. Will definitely go again. Highly recommended.

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5.0Dined on 9 May 2018

Fabulous personal service and the food was fabulous. We had forgotten to mention that my wife is gluten free when booking - they were able to adjust the ingredients without any trouble. Will definitely go back.

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5.0Dined on 3 May 2018

Great food as always. Creative and exquisitely prepared menu, with outstanding wine pairings to accompany every course. Definitely earns its 1 Michelin Star, and probably deserves another based on the lesser quality of other 1 Star establishments in Berkshire (I’m looking at you, Royal Oak).

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5.0Dined on 1 May 2018

Excellent service throughout our time there. The food was amazing and very very tasty.

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5.0Dined on 26 April 2018

What a fantastic evening. Thoroughly enjoyed. Service was amazing and knowledgable. Food was outstanding, so many beautiful tastes/flavours. Will definitely be back again.

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4.0Dined on 25 April 2018

Very good 6 course tasting menu served in a most appropriate and pleasant manner. My wife thoroughly enjoyed her birthday celebration. Thank you, we will return.

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4.0Dined on 25 April 2018

The food is great - beautifully presented and totally delicious - but this is an expensive restaurant that would appear to specialise in entertaining people who are happy to pay a massive price to have pretty food served to them and explained in a fast and almost totally incomprehensible way.

It is, nonetheless, a perfect example of the art of Nouvelle Cuisine. Accordingly, it deserves its Michelin Star.

This place is, essentially, for people who enjoy spending bucket loads of money eating small amounts of drop dead gorgeous food in a hushed restaurant with a silencing carpet , and devoid of anyone who might frighten the horses.

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3.0Dined on 18 April 2018

Interesting experience and appreciated the attention to detail. However we think it was overpriced for the amount of food served. We were still hungry when we left the restaurant.

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2.0Dined on 14 April 2018

Have been here many times. On this occasion the food was still as good. However the service was just about ok but lacked the finesse I would expect from a michelin * restaurant. Clearly there has been a complete change of staff. The sommelier was not well versed with the wines. At one point a basket of bread was plonked down in front of me in my place setting. Nothing was said by the waiter but found out later it was not ours anyway. So disappointed as this has always been our favourite local fine dining restaurant and until now has never failed to please. Probably won't be going back after all these years.

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5.0Dined on 13 April 2018

The food and service was exceptional. Would recommend it to anyone. Thank you for making my partners Birthday so memorable 🥂🥂

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5.0Dined on 13 April 2018

Fantastic food every time we have had the pleasure. The service is brilliant too.

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2.0Dined on 12 April 2018

For many years this has been one of our “go to” restaurants, but no longer. We arrived at 12.40 to receive a very off-hand greeting for a 13.00 luncheon reservation. Pre-lunch drinks order not taken until 13.20 and table not ready until 13.40. Limited menu selection, even on a la carte, portion sizes small. Disappointing and over priced for what is now on offer. Can’t imagine what will persuade us to return.

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5.0Dined on 6 April 2018

A real dining experience. We went for the chef's surprise 10 course meal with added wine and ended up trying things that we would never order. It was genuinely exciting trying new things and everything was incredible. The wines were well explained and we found some new grapes to try again in future. The service was great, really relaxed, very welcoming and always helpful. Will definitely go back (albeit it after a little saving!)

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