As with most of my recent restaurant visits, I saw Mare street Market pop up on my Instagram explore page and bookmarked it right away.
On paper, Mare Street Market is a confusing place: a restaurant, café, bar and deli. Not to mention the fact that you can also record a podcast, buy a plant and shop for antique furniture. In reality though, it’s really just one big food hall-style dining room with other quirky perks.
The set up reminds me of cafes in Bombay and I warmed to it immediately.
The entrance is littered with potted plants and a huge bar welcome you in. The Open Kitchen fills up much of the space and instantly makes you feel 1000% cooler for just being there. There’s greenery everywhere and communal tables. As you walk further in there’s soft leather couches and an outdoor area to enjoy the sunshine. Right at the back there is an open style kitchen with a huge wood fire.
The wood-fired cooking and I guess you could say the vibe in general is inspired by the laid-back food culture of California. Honestly, it’s a perfect place to spend hours here just chilling and catching up with friends.
The menu has something for everyone: brunch, burgers, salads, wood-fired pizza and a fair few, vegetarian-friendly options.
I quickly scanned the menu but having seen the oven, I decided it was only right to order a sourdough pizza.
The one thing I struggled with was the service, or lack of. I mean there were at least 10 staff members working and whenever they were approached they were always more than friendly, but they seemed to just be walking around aimlessly. It was hard to catch anyone’s attention and there wasn’t a dedicated server for the tables.
If you’ve got an afternoon to kill it’s absolutely fine but if your after prompt service, this might not be the place for you.
We ordered the Porcini, taleggio, fior di latte mozarella, rosemary, garlic sourdough pizza and the Brunch pizza – spinach, egg, mozarella, parmesan & chilli. We also got a side of fries.
The food did arrive in good time and tasted as good as fresh sourdough can. Is it anything different? Not really but the food was still of a good standard so no complaints! I also love that the brunch pizza is a thing. It’s slightly smaller than the usual pizza but just as yummy.
Mare Sreet Kitchen also gets a big thumbs up for keeping all the tables fully stocked with a huge range of condiments.
Price wise, I was really surprised at how reasonable everything was. Freshly made pizza and a drink for under £15 was definitely worth it.
Usually I’m very strong on customer service but despite the lack of dedicated service, I will definitely return. The vibe of this venue is really what makes it. I like that I could probably turn up with a laptop or a notebook and I wouldn’t be badgered by anyone. I really want to try out the brunch dishes and also visit The Dining Room.
As we left we had another quick nosey around and found a genuine vinyl record store, Stranger Than Paradise, run by a former Rough Trade East manager (which even has its own DIY podcast studio), and a neon-soaked outpost of local florists Rebel Rebel. A true hidden gem!