This shabby-chic eaterie sits above British deli Cannon & Cannon in one of Brixton Market’s revamped shopping arcades. The ultra-casual setting – scuffed paintwork, battered metal furniture, a cramped kitchen – means Salon is a take-it-as-it-comes operation, but that seems to suit the clientele of locals and market tourists.
Wine is served in tumblers, and the chefs sometimes pop out to deliver plates to tables themselves. Dishes tend to be simple, with an emphasis on fresh, very seasonal produce. At lunch, there’s a deli menu of small plates (including top-notch British charcuterie and cheese) sourced from downstairs, as well as a very good-value set menu. Highlights included super-fresh fish cakes that combined smoked mackerel, fluffy potato and dill to winning effect; tender confit of mallard leg atop a substantial helping of puy lentils and pancetta; and a gooey dark chocolate tart incorporating a layer of tangy, nicely bitter orange marmalade.
Prosecco and spring rhubarb juice made a zingy, refreshing aperitif. Come dinner, there’s a no-choice set menu of five courses (with matching wines, if wanted) – simpler for the kitchen, but a riskier proposition for the diner.