Cafe Below

4.5
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359 reviews
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£25 and under
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British

Top tags:

Good Vegetarian Options
Casual
In the atmospheric, mediaeval crypt of St Mary le Bow Church, the Cafe Below is a City institution. A quiet oasis from the hectic world above, serving a short menu of British and European dishes, with the occasional curry, the cafe has an ever changing seasonal menu. Being beneath the Bow Bells, naturally we are dedicated to all things London, so we source as locally as possible; our coffee is roasted in Hackney and our beer brewed in the East End. For breakfast, we are the perfect place for a moment of quiet before the day begins or a small or large business meeting, all with Homemade rye toast, River Farm smoked salmon, Brioche French toast and our own granola.

Jay Rayner hailed the cafe as being the "kind of restaurant any hectic city needs"; a quality driven, friendly place where you can meet mates, clients or colleagues, all in the unique setting of a Christopher Wren crypt!

Private Dining

Café Below is a hidden gem which can host prestigious events and dinners for private or business clients. Our menus and wine list are contemporary and when added to the unique 1000 year old crypt dining room, they make the perfect recipe for an event to remember.

View Private Dining Details

Special Offers

Two courses and a glass of wine (or bottle of craft ale or soda): £18

Café Below is tucked in the atmospheric thousand-year-old crypt of iconic St Mary le Bow in the heart of the City. Lauded by Jay Rayner, the restaurant has a menu of healthy homemade salads, comforting mains and house crafted desserts. From hearty beef casseroles to braised lamb to vegetarian bakes, Café Below’s menu is a wholesome yet sophisticated. This is complemented by a drinks list of small producer wines, craft beers and soft drinks. Your table is waiting!

Terms and Conditions: Maximum of 6 diners. Includes Tax, excludes service.

Valid For: 1 - 6 people

Starts: 11 September 2019

Ends: 31 October 2019

Availability: Mon-Fri 11:30-14:00

What 359 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.5
service
4.5
ambience
4.5
value
Noise · Moderate
100% of people would recommend it to a friend
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SM
London
14 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Nice location; underneath the church. Full of character. Very quiet - people in there working on laptops. Had a lovely freshly cooked breakfast. Was a group booking and all were happy!

p
London
12 reviews
Dined on 16 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

It is quite noisy but the food was excellent

KS
London
13 reviews
Dined on 8 July 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Absolutely love the Cafe Below. Great food, attentive staff and lovely location. It will always be a favourite

OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 21 June 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was simple and delicious. Our server made us feel so welcome. Thank you!

OT
London
1 review
Dined on 20 June 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always great

IB
London
191 reviews
Dined on 12 June 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Another excellent lunch at Cafe Below. Healthy, simple, reasonable, clean, great venue

WB
1 review
Dined on 5 June 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 4

My only complaint about Cafe Below was the excessively rushed service. As soon as we arrived We were asked 3 times within 5 mins if we were ready to order, then the food came instantly. The moment we finished we were asked if we wanted desert. I was tempted to ask if we were only allowed 15 mins table time!! It made us feel under pressure to leave! Food was lovely though.

JP
London
3 reviews
Dined on 17 May 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always 5 stars, can’t fault this place, everything of the menu is always delicious. Compliments to the chef!

JM
London
3 reviews
Dined on 10 May 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The Cafe Below is my favourite place to eat in the City and I love to take friends there to enjoy the wonderfully cosy atmosphere. The salads are imaginative and delicious. The service is always friendly and attentive.

JP
London
4 reviews
Dined on 1 May 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always delicious, can’t fault it.

GP
London
1 review
Dined on 12 April 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

One of my favourite places, great food, friendly staff nice atmosphere....

JM
London
4 reviews
Dined on 12 April 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Cafe Below is my favourite place to eat in the City. There's a wonderful atmosphere, the service is always attentive and friendly, and the food is delicious. I'm already looking forward to my next meal there.

IB
London
191 reviews
Dined on 10 April 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

another reliable meal at this excellent city eatery. good food; pleasant service and ambience

IB
London
191 reviews
Dined on 9 April 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Another excellent meal at Café Below. Reliable food, speedy service and affordable. Great venue

FH
London
4 reviews
Dined on 18 March 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A lovely haven to have lunch in the City. It is a small space, with therefore a small menu, but the choice was good.

FH
London
4 reviews
Dined on 4 March 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

Sadly the lamb dish had sold out by the time we ordered.
Nevertheless the chicken salad was extremely nice. The wait staff were very attentive, as ever. Many thanks, and will definitely come again.

JM
London
4 reviews
Dined on 28 February 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I am never disappointed by the Cafe Below and still love to visit there from time to time even though I no longer work nearby. The food is always delicious and the salads are particularly inspired. The service is excellent and always comes with a smile. I'm already looking forward to my next visit.

IB
London
191 reviews
Dined on 14 February 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Another great lunch at Cafe Below.
The salads are truly wonderful; the deserts delicious and wine reasonable.

MD
London
42 reviews
Dined on 5 February 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Very good food and service

AC
London
1 review
Dined on 3 January 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was really good and would highly recommend this restaurant. Service was good and friendly too. This was my first visit and will definitely be going back again.

OT
London
1 review
Dined on 17 December 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Cool venue very interesting. Food was decent, not amazing but tasty and decent portions. Prices reasonable given it’s in St. Paul’s. Makes a very nice change to all the corporate style restaurants in the City. Would go again. Lots of options for vegetarians too.

AK
London
11 reviews
Dined on 17 December 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and very speedy service - fantastic place for lunch.

S
London
11 reviews
Dined on 11 December 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

lovely staff, food was very good, we asked for a discrete table and were put next to a group so not so great as it's a bit echoey and we had trouble hearing each other once they arrived but other than that, the food and staff really made us forget about this.
We will come back for sure!

N
London
20 reviews
Dined on 5 December 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

An incredible place - made even more special by the staff; friendly, attentive, witty, caring...if I didn't already have a partner, I would move in!

OT
London
7 reviews
Dined on 2 November 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Very cosy crypt with a large choice of great meals. Vegetarian options are awesome and the products are good and fresh!

AB
London
1 review
Dined on 5 October 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Yummy Friday brekkie with a colleague - second time this week - this could be habit-forming! Which is not necessarily a bad thing... thanks Cafe Below!

IB
London
191 reviews
Dined on 19 September 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

another excellent meal at Café Below. The ambience is perfect for a business meal, and the acoustics such that you can converse easily and quietly.
Food is excellent too!

IB
London
191 reviews
Dined on 21 August 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Another wonderful lunch at Café Below!
Excellent food; lovely wine; great service.

OT
London
7 reviews
Dined on 16 August 2018
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 3

Quaint location with homemade food. Nothing massively spectacular food wise, but very enjoyable

JM
London
4 reviews
Dined on 1 August 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It's always a pleasure and a treat to eat at the Cafe Below. The food is always freshly prepared and there's something for all tastes. I especially enjoy the salad plates and vegetarian dishes. The service is always friendly with a smile and I always feel very welcome there.

r
London
13 reviews
Dined on 24 July 2018
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 3

Booked through Open Table using the special lunch offer (which you have to physically click on) of 2 courses and drink for £18. I've done a lot of deals like this through Open table and another site with no issues. When I asked for the bill they charged full price which I questioned. The waitress went off to "speak to the manager" and came back saying you must mention the offer before you order.

Now, I say that the correct response should have been, "you should request the menu before, but we will correct the bill". Note, the food is the same. The deal was only £10 cheaper for 2 so no real issue, but for anyone booking it, just note what you need to do.

Food was all OK. Nicely cooked but not particularly full of flavour.

SW
London
11 reviews
Dined on 3 July 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful to be able to sit outside in the City but away from traffic. Interesting and delicious array of salads all hand prepared. Home made lemonade was very refreshing in the heat. Food very good value. Service very efficient yet friendly. Will certainly come back.

IB
London
191 reviews
Dined on 19 June 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent venue with lovely outside seating area.
Food id very good and reasonable.

MW
London
1 review
Dined on 3 May 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I love the Cafe Below. I know I will always enjoy my meal, the service is great and the setting unusual so all round, a great place for lunch.

SW
London
11 reviews
Dined on 17 April 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Love this place as you feel miles from the City. Delicious home cooked and healthy food

s
London
4 reviews
Dined on 6 April 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

First visit to the Cafe Below. Good food options. Ok wine selection.

OT
London
3 reviews
Dined on 23 March 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Good food and very quick

JP
London
4 reviews
Dined on 2 February 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always love this place and food is just the best. Highly recommend.

IB
London
191 reviews
Dined on 18 December 2017
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Reliable city eatery!
The food is good, service timely, and the price very affordable.

OT
London
2 reviews
Dined on 15 December 2017
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Have eaten here several times. The food is excellent, the surroundings unusual and the service very quick and efficient.

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