Tartine has established itself on the Tooting High Street scene for a number of years now, and following on from it's success, opened a sister restaurant in Balham. This quaint 'Parisienne' café offers breakfast, brunch and lunch 7 days a week.
The Morcoccan-Mediterrean food is what draws me back to Tartine, with the classic 'lamb merquez wrap' and 'meat mezze' always being the big hits. I have unfortunately always been disappointed by the coffee here. I've found that it's never strong enough, never warm and slightly too expensive for what is on offer.
In the summer days, the cafe's opening hours are longer, and there is a small seating area outdoors. The main issue with this however, is that you are right on the busy main road (lots of traffic and ambulances whizzing past at all times of day), so it's actually nicer to sit inside away from the hussle and bussle of Tooting's main road.
There is often a bit of a wait for a table as the place is very popular with all of Tooting's eclectic population, including students, doctors and yummy mummies (not quite sure where they come from).
Tartine is a smart change from the usual type of food on offer in most of Tooting's restaurants, but will have to maintain it's quality with the increasing competition from other up and coming cafe's that are popping up all over Tooting.
In terms of decent coffee, between my house and the tube station there is slim pickings. Actually this is the only place that calls out on Tooting High Street that isn't a corner shop or curry house.
In desperate need of coffee and breakfast I stumbled in at 8.30am to what looked like an empty café. Little did I know lurking behind the counter was a lovely gent who talked me though his pastries. Now I'm not going to call him a liar but I'm just going to say that those muffins looked suspiciously bought in. So I settled on their version of a pasty. For those of you who have eaten one of these in front of me will know "pasty's repeat themselves on you" for the next 48 hours. Me choosing this was due to lack of selection and need for a speedy decision. It wasn't a mistake. This greasy pastry parcel filled with goats cheese, spinach and tomato did not disappoint, the coffee was hot, smooth and had caffeine in it and it cost me less that 4 quid. All in all a winner.
I have to love this place, the breads really do look amazing in the window and during peak brunch/lunch time it's packed with yummy mummys. The atmosphere is like Chelsea has arrived in tooting, with deep wood flooring and polite staff. I know, I know you won't believe me but Tooting really is up and coming!
Worst macarons I've ever tasted. They were crunchy. CRUNCHY. Macarons should be delicate treats, not hard biscuits.
Service is slow and the food is pretty forgettable. But the place is very cute and clean, if you can get past all the kids everywhere. Mothers love going there. Can't fathom why.
Everyone knows that the French are known for their cafés. For their bread. But not for their coffee.
Tartine is a homely and clean cafe in Tooting with tempting bread displays outside. The entire place screams Parisienne. The bread basket was delicious (and served in appropriately dainty French portions), and the coffee was expectedly bad. I should say, though, it wasn't bad in the 'French dark roast to hide the fact that the beans were primarily robusto rather than arrabica and cafetierred into a sludge' way. No, it was Italian espresso-style coffee; it just was not well prepared. I can't say I'm particularly surprised, though, as the French certainly aren't known for their delicate brewing skills.
Oh, and the French serving staff was indifferent bordering on rude.
So, I know you're saying that so far this sounds like a perfectly respectable French café experience, non?
Well, the chocolate cake was a bit disappointing. And by 'disappointing' I mean it tasted like it was commercially prepared and bought in despite the café workers saying the baked goods were made onsite. Either way, it wasn't the gastronomic delight I would have expected from French cake.
Of every French baked-good-eating experience, I expect to react by rubbing said baked good all over my body whilst mumbling soft incoherent nothings about the pastry chef.
Or, you know, something along these lines.
I felt ambivalent about that cake, though. So, three stars.
I moved to Tooting about 2 months ago, and I've been searching for a place to get good baguettes. The Sainsbury's bread just doesn't cut it for me, and the bread from M&S is a bit better, but still leaves me unsatisfied.
I got a pain blanc from Tartine one Saturday morning, and it was exactly what I was looking for. Thick, fantastic crust with a good bite to it, and the bread was tasty, with just the right moistness.
I've also gone there one Saturday afternoon for a pain au chocolat and a coffee, and my friend got a hot chocolate. Everything was delicious.
I'm really happy to have this place within a 10-minute walk from where I live.
Massively overpriced for no reason.
Also full of women with prams.
Very good Franco- North African cafe; I highly recommend the Tartine Mixed Grill( merguez, chicken, and a type of beef kebab). Convenient for St. George's Hospital.
In Balham and looking for a nice brunch/lunch then Tartine will not disappoint. They have quite the tasty menu and charming bistro setting. If the weather is decent you'll enjoy their little sidewalk with heat lamps. Grab a tasty coffee if you're short on time. No matter what, you'll enjoy this little neighborhood gemme! Jouir y'all!
I went to Tartine (the one in Balham) for my birthday brunch. I'd never been before and I loved it. The food was delicious, with generous portions! Service was quick and pleasant. I really enjoyed the relaxed Parisian atmosphere I felt like I was in Paris! I promptly returned the following week with my sister for dinner. (They're open in the evenings now, till 9 I think) which is lovely on a summer's evening.
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