LBV is known for merging classic and progressive flavours using seasonal ingredients in a variety of light and gourmet meals. Standout starters are the crispy duck with condensed chilli mayo and orange gel, and the sesame seared tuna with wasabi mayo and cream, pickled cucumber, and chilli ginger glaze.
For mains, well-presented, tantalising options include the lamb shank, served with green peas, mint purée, and charred onions for balance, as well as the beef fillet and mushroom pasta served with white wine, garlic sauce and parmesan sprinkled on top. Among the vegetarian and fish options are the veggie burger with mushroom, chickpeas, spinach and fries, and crispy sea bass with confit potato, rosemary and roasted vegetables.
The dessert menu is substandard – only four options to choose from. One that stands out is the red wine poached pear with meringue, rosemary fudge, parmesan, red wine caramel and coral tuile. Sadly, the presentation and taste are disappointing, as there are just too many flavours.
There are a variety of local wines to choose from, but the rather average cocktail menu is limited, with fewer than seven options.
Making a telephone booking is quick and efficient, and a text message will confirm your reservation. Staff are well-informed and efficient.
The dim hanging lights, white tablecloths and a chalkboard wall with quirky signage and quotes provide modern and artistic flair. The patrons are casual and discreet, opting to enjoy their meal quietly with jazzy lounge music playing in the background.
A romantic date, business lunch, or catch-up lunch or dinner with friends.
Eat Out critics dine unannounced and pay for their meals in full. Read our full editorial policy here.
I wish to join the choir of those on the page and others, that are unsatisfied and unimpressed by LBV, not least the customer service. I emailed the below to the generic email address, to which the repsonse was equally generic, simply thanking for the feedback and asking for forgiveness. In short, LBV needs to seriously up their service (and stop making customers feel they are the ones having to go through all the work to have a pleasant experience) if they want to be considered among the worthwhile places to visit in johannesburg: We wish to bring to your attention a highly regrettable and diappointing experience with your establishment. On Tuesday 18th June, I made an online resservation for 19th June 19h30, which I subsequently ammened (online and both of which there is an online record of) to 20h00 (for my birthday dinner). The same afternoon we phoned to confirm that it was for Link Room and not the a la carte. Upon being informed over the phone that the Link Room is not available on a Wednesday, we telephonically requested and recieved verbal confirmation, of a Link Room booking on friday 21st June for two people at 20h00. As the booking was both being cancelled and remade at the same time there could be no excuse of any miscommunication. However, upon arrival Friday evening, we were told, to our great surprise and disappointment, that no such booking or resservation existed, and that the Link Room would require prior notice, in order to prepare a dinner. There was no forthcoming apology, instead it was made to seem that we were the ones at fault for not confirming the booking, and not bein able to present documentation of an actual Link Room booking. It gave the us the unequivocal impression, that there were no interest in accommodating us. In addition, since there were no other LINK diners we wondered if our booking was just conviently lost cos you wouldnt want to prepare a tasting menu for just two people. It is not only disappointing that we had come an inconvenient distance and made Friday night arrangements, to no avail, but even further despondent the the entire experience and unfulfilled expectations were left hanging in a manner that made us look at fault.
I consider it important to share feedback directly with restaurants and give them the right of response. I took the time and trouble to send a detailed review to LBV after an under-whelming meal months ago and received no response. Doesn't say much for their customer service... herewith the review I sent them:
" Hubby and I have been very blessed to be able to travel the world and enjoy fantastic food. This year we decided to try all the local eateries we have as yet not been to. We had been wanting to try LBV ages now. I initially checked the restaurant week menu and didn’t like the offerings at LBV from that particular menu… but LOVED the sound of your tasting menu advertised on the website. This is what we had booked for and looked forward to all week….
1st strike: we were told only when we arrived that you only did the restaurant week menu. We were very disappointed as we had especially come to have the tasting menu on the website….! Why is this not made clear on your website?
We chose the 3-course restaurant week option with wine pairing
Amuse bouche – a tad overwhelmingly sweet for my palate but that is an individual taste. The sweet potato bit was good and paired well with the kale. Sadly, the dish had been sitting around for a while before serving as the sauce was already coagulating.
Starter: We both love duck so could not even look at the other option… Oh no!!! HUGE disappointment! Totally overcooked and tough and leathery as old boots. Not the slightest bit of pink left. There is such a fine line between a divine perfectly cooked duck breast and how over-cooking duck can turn it into a culinary disaster – alas…this poor duck had died in vain…
Pate was nice. We did ask for a bit of toast or cracker bread to spread it on to and the waiter happily obliged.
Main: I had the seabass – beautiful fish this and it was done perfectly! Why oh why were the stunning prawn tortellinis served iced cold?!!
Hubby had the fillet, reluctantly as he thinks (as I agree) that it is an expensively boring cut of meat. He was drawn to it for the marrow bone which was very yum indeed. I tasted for research purposes – The steak was less medium rare and more overdone and the whole dish was rather overwhelmed with the truffle oil. While I really enjoy the taste of anything truffle related (especially real truffles!!) less is more here and the dish lost layers of flavour because of the overpowering truffle taste and aroma.
Dessert – We had one of each. They were nice
Overall impression: We expected so much more and were rather disappointed…
The best part of the evenings experience was the excellent and efficient service by Akeem the waiter. He was amazing. The other staff were also friendly and warm… such a pity about the food…"
I'd never heard about LBV until my husband made a booking with them for Restaurant Week.
Their food was out of this world! We had a set menu (as is standard with Restaurant Week bookings) and were blown away. I couldn't believe this place had been under our radar until now.
The first thing you notice about LBV is how casual and relaxed the atmosphere is. There are no airs and graces when it comes to the staff, management or the chefs. They are eager to help and are happy to create beautiful food for their patrons.
Their vegetarian selection is a little on the light side but whatever I could eat, was divine! Their prices are a little high but I think definitely worth it.
They have created a beautiful, relaxed space for people to enjoy stellar food!
This is the place to go if you haven’t been there yet!! Very sophisticated menu with well thought ingredient combinations! Well priced for the quality and experience. We had a lovely evening and will definitely go again.
It deserves being rated amongst South Africa’s top restaurants. The food was divine and the service wonderful. The ambience wasn’t that great though the last time I was there; too quiet and empty.