Friday, October 12, 2007

Cafe Rouge - croque-ing place

Cafe Rouge manages a passable imitation of an authentic French brasserie, from the gilded mirrors to the rubbishy service. But, as long as you don't get too adventurous, it is a reliable stand-by. The croque monsieur with smoked salmon (£6.95) is delicious and makes for a very filling lunch, though the accompanying chips usually look like they could have done with longer in the fryer. Other safe bets are the merguez baguette (£8.25) and the fougasse (a yummy French bread with caramelised onions, garlic and gruyere, £4.95). Be careful though as dishes from the plats chaud section (eg steak frites for £12.50) tend to be unimpressive and quite overpriced. The olives are good, and the drinks list is more varied than you'd expect in a place like this, ranging from citron vert presse (£2) to Leffe Blonde (£3.25). So overall, it's not a bad choice especially in areas like Canary Wharf where there isn't generally much choice and anything that's edible, reliable, affordable and actually has free tables at lunchtime is a real boon.

Cafe Rouge, branches all over including 29-35 Mackenzie Walk, Canary Wharf, E14 4PH;

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