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Forest Hill

Chilled, charming and delightfully domestic in scale, this café-gallery is made up of a series of small rooms papered with old maps and pages from cookbooks, and filled with junk shop furniture and finds (some of it for sale) – well-worn chairs tucked under the staircase, a cast-iron fireplace with a clock on the mantelpiece, an old door nailed on to some legs as a table. At the back, down a rickety staircase, is a makeshift conservatory and a small, secluded garden.

The Montage doubles as an art gallery, so the walls are also crammed with work by local artists and the first floor, by contrast, is a cool white exhibition space. In this curious environment, an arty crowd sup mochas and mull over how to fill their weekend, while the friendly owners serve freshly baked cakes (victoria sponge with real strawberries, scones, brownies, and a cheese and onion cake) and talk art. You’re likely to leave relaxed, recharged and humming the soundtrack of ragtime tunes.


Venue name: Montage
Address: 33 Dartmouth Road
SE23 3HN
Opening hours: Open 10am-6pm Mon, Wed-Sat; 10am-5pm Sun
Transport: Tube: Forest Hill rail
Price: Main courses £4-£5

Average User Rating

5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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1 person listening

Wonderful. By now simply home from home. Not so much slice of Berlin as slice of Poland. Great art, wonderful hosts and great cake. My table at Mala Ziemianska.

Basia Lautman

Magical place. Wonderful exhibitions, friendly atmosphere, you will come out feeling recharged and inspired. The style of the interior is unique and everywhere you turn there is something fascinating. I heard the current exhibition consists of furnished flat, everything is for sale. The owner is a very talented artist. I can't recommend this place highly enough.

Deborah Nielsen

Fantastic place, bought a lovely paiting, had a delicious carrot cake and hot chocolate., lovely people, chatty and welcoming.

Bruce Harrison

The Montage IS just how you describe it, but better. The owners are artists in their own right so the quirky interior downstairs is a work of art in itself! There's alway something new and interesting to look at over coffee and cake. The exhibition space upstairs is very different - bright, white exhibition rooms with a good variety of artists showing their work -a different exhibition every few weeks.

Basia Lautman

A real gem, friendly, brimming with interesting art and beautiful objects. There is a nice veranda and the garden and an unobtrusive playroom for young children. Upstairs a gallery with frequently changing art shows carefully selected, by the owner who is a very talented artist himself. Highly recommened.