Covent Garden isn’t short of places to eat, but a new one has arrived in the revamped Transport Museum cafe/bar, Canteen.
Inspired by 1940s transport catering, the museum has taken the small space they used to have for a cafe and roughly tripled the space, taking over part of the shop and a widened footbridge.
Decorated with a lot of reclaimed furniture and fittings from old stations, the layout is delivered with a flourish of train station without being overly slavish to trying to recreate the effect.
As I was in the area one Saturday lunchtime, it’s time to check out the menu — or more accurately, wander around the museum a bit then come back, as the place was packed, which is not bad considering that it’s now three times bigger than the old cafe.
Fortunately, it’s also table service, so no risk of buying food only to find the few spare tables are filled up when your back’s turned.
Lunch today was grilled flat iron steak (done to order) with chips. Took a while to arrive, which is irksome, but it’s busy so hardly a major complaint, and it was decent enough when it arrived. Nothing outstanding frankly, but ideal for a lunchtime meal, and par for the course for the area.
The opening hours have been extended, so it’s now open until 7:30pm Wed-Sat, serving up some rather nice cocktails.
Looking around the decor, do look for the lights – they were designed for Embankment tube station but for some reason never used, and been sitting in a warehouse for decades. The decoration is based on the fold-away Bostwick gates that seal off station entrances.
Stars: 3 out of 5
Date: 26th Dec 2019
Summary: A decent enough meal for the price in Covent Garden, and the decor is quite fun even if you’re not a train nerd.