The Ledford House Restaurant is south of Mendocino on a bluff overlooking the Pacific ocean. They can serve 65-90 people in 2 adjacent dining rooms that both are lined with windows looking through to the coastline. It is owned by a couple Tony and Lisa Geer, where she manages the kitchen and he the front of the house. The cuisine is influenced by southern France and the Mediterranean with an emphasis on using sustainable sources. Open Wed – Sun for dinner, they have nightly live music but not sure when it begins as it wasn’t happening when we were there, but we were in early. In addition to the menu, they have a 3-course bistro special and nightly appetizer and entree specials. There is a full bar with seating and people were eating there too. Both rooms had fireplaces and piped-in music in the background. There was plenty of parking out front and tables somewhere outside. Inside had open windows. Staff were all friendly and efficient. It’s not a wow place just good solid food with fun choices.
We were enjoying a nicely made martini and the server brought a plate of bread, olives and olive oil. The white bread was doughy on the inside with a nice crust. The brown bread had some seeds baked into it and was less doughy but still had a fine crust. The olives were good-sized and tasty.
An appetizer special that evening was baked Pacific oysters with bacon, herbs and crispy breadcrumbs. The interesting part here is you could order however many you wanted (rather than the standard plate of 4 -6). We opted to split a dozen and that was perfect. They were not as heavy as many baked oysters but still had wonderful flavor and the toasted breadcrumbs were an ideal topping. Overall a mild flavor but they were a treat.
Duck breast was seared and served with a dried cherry Zinfandel sauce. It was nicely rare, as requested, and served with green beans and mashed potatoes. The cherry sauce was totally yummy and the mashed potatoes were still a bit chunky but well cooked with some rosemary overtones. The green beans were tender and cooked nicely but underseasoned. It was a good plate of food.
Cassoulet contained Cannellini beans, pork, lamb, garlic sausage and duck confit which was all topped with bread crumbs. The sausage was sliced and the pork was in one chunk that I found. The beans were cooked perfectly and all the flavors blended as they should. It really held the heat and I had the server bring some extra white bread to use with the saucy beans. It was a real treat.
Chocolate pudding cake was made with a fudgy brownie cake, housemade vanilla gelato, fudge sauce, whipped cream and toasted walnuts. This was like a molten cake with added fudge sauce – and that’s a recipe for success. Lovely vanilla gelato worked in perfectly as did the whipped cream and toasted nuts. It was more than enough for 2 and a delightful way to finish a fine meal.