Ooh la la, Cafe Renoir!


You could have knocked Mrs Kentishtowner down with a feather. Really you could. For just the other day Cafe Renoir …



Le coeur de la Ville Kentis

You could have knocked Mrs Kentishtowner down with a feather. Really you could. For just the other day Cafe Renoir emerged with a chic new look, all Farrow and Ball taupes and Kentish Canteen je ne sais quoi. But is it just an X Factor impersonation of the real thing – or is it, um, Tulisa herself?

There, alas, we must reserve judgement as we have yet to taste the new menu. But we readily offer upturned thumbs to the rattan chairs, banquette seating and gently updated European vibe, engineered presumably to seduce the new French families in town. And just look at that terrace – what a charming spot to watch the passing ragbag of businessmen, young mums, students, hipsters, hoodies, pensioners, intellectual-types, builders and indie kids.

So here’s what Mrs Kentishtowner discovered this morning over her alfresco Americano (deliciously strong, £2), the dog amiably dozing at her feet:

* The coffee is a zillion times better than it used to be
* It’s now open open for dinner too (till 10pm)
* New Zealand white is just £17 a bottle
* There’s seabass, lamb shank and fillet steak on the menu (£10-£14)
* Not to mention the obligatory sharing plates (Mediterranean platter around £8)
* …and lots of healthy salads (£8)

So yes…it sounds a little like…the, um, Canteen.

But seriously, as far as we’re concerned, the more quality independent outlets on Kentish Town Road, the better. Oh, and if you’re one of those trail-blazing types who’s already been there done that, it’s your duty to let us know NOW.

Till next time, Adieu. Ciao bella. La vie en K-Ville, c’est magnifique!


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  • Ian Cowen

    I’m glad to hear about the coffee, I’ll look forward to trying that. Its hard not to find a cup of boiling hot brown water passing for coffee in NW5.

  • Kentishtowner

    Ian, thanks for the comment although I fear it might prove quite controversial with the hardcore KT brigade! There are some great coffee places in NW5 – our favourites are Wine Cellar, Mario’s Cafe, Kentish Canteen, Bean & Cup, 176 Gallery, and Map Cafe (although don’t get takeout).

  • fiona

    Actually, I thought it was quite hard to find a really bad cup of cofee in KT now . Tolli’s is the most full-on btw. Jitters, panicky, the works.
    £17 for a bottle of NZ white eh? as a local, one of these days you’ll have to tell us all about O’Reillys!

    • Kentishtowner

      Have you been to O’Reillys? Maybe you should tell us…Mrs Kentishtowner won’t go through the door!

  • Geoffrey Austin Newland

    Please let that coffee be better – but yep espresso in the Wine Cellar is fantastic. Now we need a patisserie or at least a decent bakers – pleeeaaassseeee….
    Vive la Ktown revolution…
    ??re-branding of Kentish town high street to High Street Ken?? haha

    • Kentishtowner

      Earth Natural Foods is good for artisan bread…but actually I agree – there isn’t a really nice patisserie….although the custard tarts at Wine Cellar are literally unbeatable.
      High Street Ken or La Ville Kentish – which is better? Vote now…

  • Ian Cowen

    Ah, sorry – it wasn’t meant to upset anyone. I was being flippant really but a nice Square Mile roast pulled by a qualified barista would be nice in KT. Wine Cellar wins on price more than taste I’d say. The organic roasts at the little Bean about Town van are lovely though.

  • Kentishtowner

    I kinda agree too though Ian…in a way. I’m obsessed with Square Mile and the Antipodean coffee places like Kaffeine. It’d be great to see one in KT.

  • fiona

    Well I’m not upset, very excited to discover how many people (ok, four) have strong opinions on Kentish Town coffee, and indeed custard tarts. I have been to O’Reillys on several occasions and lived to tell the tale. I’m tough, me.

  • Ella Jones (@ellajonesmusic)

    Having lived in Kentish town my entire life I can tell you all that we are literally spoiled rotten now. When I was a little girl the only cafe was Brassino(which is currently being done up/taken over), which served instant with steamed milk!
    Surprisingly, Harry’s do great coffee.

    • Kentishtowner

      Brassino had such great font too. Wonder what it’ll become? By the way Ella send us some links to your music and we can feature it or summat.

  • youngdonkey

    went here for first time this weekend since the refurb. nice inside, useless staff. couldn’t deal with the fact we wanted a black coffee, it seemed like a foreign concept to them. suffice to say won’t going there for coffee again, plenty of other options in town.