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21 Monmouth Street
Since opening in the 1940s, this jaunty theatreland bistro has found favour with famous figures from General de Gaulle to legendary thespians, and the curios adorning its sprawling dining room are
fond reminders of its true Gallic heart. On the menu, hearty nostalgic dishes and cross-Channel favourites such as rib-sticking coq au vin or blush-pink entrecôte with matchstick fries sit
alongside holiday classics including pissaladière with olive tapenade or garlicky snails doused in parsley butter – all complemented by patriotic French wines. To conclude, the ripe cheeseboard is
a whiffy wonder to behold, while desserts feature the spectacular Paris-Londres – a gut-busting tangle of sugar-dusted choux pastry, praline cream and spun caramel. Warm, hospitable staff bolster
the entente cordiale, while pre/post-theatre crowds generate a lively buzz. ‘You’ll never stop going back’, affirms one fan.
From: 03 September 2018
To: 31 December 2018
Look for the "£" icon when booking (offers only available on certain days/times)
21 Monmouth Street
020 7836 7243
Covent Garden Tube Station 214m
Tottenham Court Road Tube Station 401m
Donmar Warehouse Theatre 67m
Cambridge Theatre 103m
Mon-Sat 12N-2.15pm 5.45-11.15pm
Food & Drink:
Rate & Review
Food + drink: 2
I used to love Mon Plaisir - everything enjoyable about Gallic eating, noisy, bustling, centuries of food and cooking, classic dishes, busy staff, competent not unctuous - a celebration of good brasserie eating. I hadn't been for years and night before last I couldn't believe how much we, the British foodie, has grown up and the over-riding impression that Mon Plaisir has not. Just like we have now had a mouthful of Chilean Malbec, rather than a thin Vin de Pays form the borders of a French wine region, we expect so much more from people who cook for us. A cassoulet can do more, rich flavours, herbs, deep colour, sausage that has infused the dish, and a piece of duck that has been brought to life by cooking not blanched in Tupperware in the catering fridge. It reminded me of the early Italian restaurants in 70's London, where 'pasta plus sauce' was enough for the Brits to think we were eating like Italians. So ..........the kitchen at Mon Plaisir has slept through four decades of the British restaurant industry, the staff are still competent and characterful, and the cheese tray/basket/selection is, well, it's as spectacular and eye-popping as you would expect in an old school French restaurant - but then it hasn't been cooked.
Food + drink: 3
I've been frequenting this restaurant on and off for over ten years and my latest visit leads me to believe the owners are somewhat going through the motions. The food we had was competently cooked but not spectacular, I have memories of this place Wowing, not sure if it's a case of the rose-tinted specs. We had steak entrecote (staple dish on the menu and a host of sides) however whilst the meal was good it wasn't stunning. You could tell they cut corners on certain things which were not freshly prepared. The sauces has skins on them leading me to believe they had been reheated from a batch made in the morning. Nothing terrible about the experience but nothing also urging me to rush back either,
Food + drink: 1
I think this might have been the worst meal I have ever had in a London restaurant and I have had my fair share of disappointments.
The menu reads well, is nice and short leading the diner to think that if they only do a few dishes they are masters of them rather than a jack of all trades. Prices seem reasonable.
My soupe a l'oignon was tepid and a bit tasteless, unremarkable in every way but streets ahead of the main course of coq au vin. You would expect the oldest french restaurant in London to do a very capable classic dish like this. Served in an attractive cocotte there was hardly any sauce and the chicken was incredibly dry and overcooked leading me to believe it had been put in the oven the day the restaurant opened 50 years ago.
3 of us had that dish and it was equally poor. On informing the waitress I got a sullen, “Ok, I tell the chef.” It wasn't ok – a verbal tic and an innappropriate one.
My sister had steak tartare which she said at least that couldn't be overcooked and it looked fine.
Maybe we caught the chef on an off day but it is difficult to imagine how a restaurant can serve food this poorly and survive for 50 years.
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