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74 Charlotte Street
020 7268 6565
Monica Galetti, MasterChef judge and former senior sous-chef at Le Gavroche, offered herself up for public scrutiny when she opened Mere, but reports of “understated excellence” suggest she is on a winning streak. An elegant, sumptuously upholstered bar allows guests to peruse the menu, and the striking design continues downstairs, where a double-height glass frontage makes Mere equally appealing for lunch or dinner. Galetti’s Samoan and Kiwi heritage blend seamlessly with Gavroche-style haute cuisine for a contemporary take on high-end dining that’s harmonious, pretty and shot through with “simply amazing” flavours and textures. A springy curl of octopus comes hot and sticky from the plancha with an addictive caper and raisin jam on the side, lobster is simply poached and served with potato purée, cabbage and a bisque sauce, while 30-day aged sirloin is accompanied by puffs of onion beignets, glazed cheek and a tarragon crème fraîche. After that, the coconut cream pie filled with roasted banana and drizzled with rum caramel is the stuff of sweet dreams. The wine list is also “a joy” – in short, Ms Galetti has stamped her identity on one of London’s most famous foodie streets.
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74 Charlotte Street
020 7268 6565
Goodge Street Tube Station 120m
Warren Street Tube Station 486m
Charlotte Street 92m
Goodge Street 144m
Mon-Sat 12N-2pm 6-10pm (B: 12N-12M)
The intimate private dining room at Mere is well suited to social gatherings, special occasions or even business lunches. Accommodating up to 10 guests, the room is furnished in soft grey and brown shades, with a distressed, tiled mirror wall and tables set with Mere’s signature crockery and glassware. A television screen is discreetly incorporated into the wooden wall panels, allowing guests to have a direct view into the kitchen and the chefs at work. A bespoke six-course menu is available, while the talented sommelier team will be on hand to offer wine pairings to suit any occasion. Mere is also available to hire exclusively for up to 55 seated guests.
Food & Drink:
Rate & Review
Food + drink: 5
A recent trip to Mere impressed highly. The three members of our party, who dined there midweek, are all sceptics by nature and try as we did to identify shortcomings, we struggled. From beginning to end, the experience is about understated excellence with high attention to detail. Diners enter a relatively discrete building at the northern end of Charlotte Street, away from much of the hustle and bustle of the area. The restaurant proper (tables and waiters) is nowhere in sight. This is a very clever touch: one can relax in the bar – which works as a standalone destination – and then descend at one’s leisure to the dining area in the basement. Both rooms were decorated intelligently with clear thought given to how to light the basement, to make it intimate rather than dreary. Our food orders were taken upstairs in the bar, meaning that the only focus downstairs was on the food – another clever idea, which minimises disruption and avoids unnecessary long waits. We opted for a la carte, although a tasting menu is also available. Diners choose from around half a dozen starters and mains, with a strong emphasis on seasonal ingredients. Monica, the head chef, takes her influences not just from classic French cooking, but also the South Pacific. All three of us were delighted with our choices, both in terms of presentation and taste. My octopus starter, which was served with fennel and a caper condiment, was delicious, with the flavours marrying harmoniously together. Meanwhile, my venison main was cooked to perfection – medium-rare – and paired beautifully with red cabbage, celeriac and juniper. The wine list was a joy to choose from: a white Burgundy with the starter and a New Zealand Pinot Noir with the main, both available in carafe format. Overall, this is a place about which its owners and staff seem to feel passionate. Monica did the rounds of the table, engaging with all the guests – something which is a rare as it is welcome. The only caveat – the experience does not come cheap: starters average £15 and mains £30. Add in a drink before dinner, wine, coffee and service, and one is lucky to get away with less than £100/head. But it is worth it!
I have been to the restaurant twice since it opened. Once for dinner and once for lunch. Both times the food was excellent. It has a good relaxed ambiance and service is also good. Strong wine list.
Mere had a wonderful atmosphere and warm welcoming staff as soon as we arrived. We had a drink in the relaxing bar area before being taken downstairs to our table. The lighting and decor were very attractive and we kept noticing different touches as we sat enjoying our meal. (Glasses engraved Mere, wood and wine bottles in decor etc).
I had apricot juice in the bar which was delicious and a glass of rose champagne with my meal this was poured into the most elegant glass I have ever seen.
Our meal was perfection - we had the luncheon menu, mine being adjusted for no cheese or chocolate which the helpful staff organised with no fuss. Each course was beautifully presented and tasted out of this world. Flavours blended and textures and shapes simply amazing.
Finally I was given a little card on an easel saying happy birthday from Monica, David and the team at Mere and four little chocolates displayed in a coconut shell. The perfect end to a wonderful birthday outing.
Thank you Monica, David and the team at Mere.
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