Set in a former warehouse on an idyllic alleyway off Charterhouse Square, Café du Marché is divided into three separate eateries: Le Café is the smartest and most atmospheric, with a pared-down country-meets-city aesthetic (bare brick walls, starched white tablecloths, original wooden floors, candles), and a jazz pianist to set the sophisticated but warm tone. The romantic location is popular with couples; customers tends toward the ‘lawyer with a house in the Dordogne’ type. The fixed-price three-course à la carte (the only option) features a nice balance of French provincial dishes. We opted for soupe du jour (vegetable), and purple-sprouting broccoli with hollandaise for starters. Entrecôte, for a main, came with roquefort-buttered spinach and crispy new spuds, while the swordfish daily special arrived with ratatouille. Dishes were beautifully presented and near faultless – save for the rather stringy swordfish. Chocolate mousse to follow was deliciously rich and appropriately small. The wine list (almost exclusively French) provides a satisfying read for oenophiles. Professional, pleasant staff deserve the hefty (‘optional’) 15% service charge. Complimentary extras such as a large salad bowl with the mains and constantly refilled bread baskets reinforce the feeling of being well looked after.
Housed in a converted warehouse and set over two floors, we also host music events twice a month in our upstairs dining room, Le Grenier.
|Venue name:||Café du Marché||Contact:|
22 Charterhouse Square, Charterhouse Mews
|Opening hours:||Le Café Lunch served noon-2.30pm Mon-Fri. Dinner served 6-10pm Mon-Sat. Set meal £33.85 3 courses. Le Grenier Lunch served noon-2.30pm Mon-Fri. Dinner served 7-10pm Mon-Sat. Set meal £33.85 3 courses. Le Rendezvous Lunch served noon-2.30pm Mon-Fri.|
|Transport:||Tube: Barbican tube/Farringdon tube/rail|
|Price:||Main courses £9-£16.|
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This just might be the most romantic restaurant in London and it is well within your budget! We're talking hidden away through a cobblestoned corner, exposed brick walls, candlelit tables, jazz pianist - the works. The menu is an ever changing seasonal modern French affair, always with an option of a set 2/3 courses should you wish, and the wine list is extensive and carefully thought out. Don't worry if you're at all indecisive or feel a little overwhelmed, I have always found that asking the attentive and authentically French waiting staff to simply bring you the chef's recommendation and wine pairing works an absolute treat. Should you have any celebration coming up, Le Cafe du Marche would make the ultimate setting - especially if it happens to fall on Jazz Thursdays!