The restaurants of Brixton Village tend to have certain characteristics in common. No reservations, buckets of cutlery in the centre of the table, portions huge with little consideration for the presentation – awesome, casual, down and dirty dining. From the exterior, Salon looks kind of similar – a cheese and charcuterie shop, with a cake and coffee offering on the side; it’s a bit dark and dingy with just a couple of tables. Behind the counter, though, is a staircase. And that changes everything.
Salon upstairs (the Dining Room) is quite the antithesis of Salon downstairs (the Store Room). It’s so utterly different to every other eatery in Brixton Village in fact. A small, atmospheric dining room, with half a dozen tables, vast wine racks and an open kitchen, it’s homely and immediately makes you feel like you’ve discovered something a little bit special. They take bookings (there are two large tables which are perfect for parties of 6-8), and it’s civilised and upmarket, without being pretentious. One of the few places in Brixton that you could take your parents to, or impress a date with, without a hint of grittiness.
In the evenings, a set menu is served – £29 for 4 courses of the chefs choice. Inventive and seasonal, the majority of the ingredients are not only British, but grown, produced or foraged in south London!
Each dish comes with a story – details of where the ingredients were sourced from, or the method of preparation or cooking used. And each plate is quite perfectly presented too – carefully arranged, with interesting textures and flavours – Instagram at the ready.
Brunch is also a must-try meal at Salon, with classic dishes given an upmarket and contemporary twist, and all amazingly affordable.
Or if you’re in the Village between meal times, the coffee and cake at Salon are exceptionally good too (is there anything this place can’t do?!) – I highly recommend the carrot cake.
18 Market Row, Brixton, London SW9 8LD