Forget formal dining with the kids in tow. You didn’t enjoy it, they didn’t enjoy and everybody probably left as hungry as the arrived. Step up child-friendly chain restaurants with kids’ menus and colouring, but a sad reheated quality that makes you wonder if you should have stayed at home. Now, make space for the food hall. That’s exactly what Market Hall Fulham have done. They’ve artfully gutted the iconic market hall and thrown down some dining tables reminiscent of a German beer hall. Some original features remain: sitting beside Fulham Broadway station, the hall still retains the former ticket stalls from the original 1880 Underground station. This has been turned into a bar, but peculiarly people queue in single file, as if standing in line for tickets.
At 7pm the hall is teeming with the work crowd, like a suited and booted Pop Brixton. They’ve come for the Market Helles house lager and the ability to nip across the hall for a fancy kebab from Fanny’s without exiting the bar. The crowd dissipated after an hour or so, and with the hall quieter and calmer, we enjoyed some cocktails. The cocktail list is short, but with a negroni, pisco sour, mezcal margarita on the menu, we could see they’d chosen well.
The cool atmosphere of the late evening left us wanting to return for a daytime session. Bring along the buggies, let the kids loose in the play area and kick back for a catch up with a charming glass of rosé. Or a Market Halls Pink Grapefruit Soda, which we’re assured is the soft drink of choice for south west socialite. You’re welcome to bring the dog too, so why not make it a real family outing?
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As the sunlight streaks through the glass roof, and you’re sampling the seasonal wine list, perhaps you get peckish. For me that vision includes grilled scallops from Thima or a build-your-own bowl from Ahi Poké. It’s a tough choice however with Butchies’ buttermilk chicken vying for the ‘best fried chicken in London crown’ and ‘Meaty barbeque masterpiece’ Hotbox slow-cooking some tender, melt in your mouth meals. No doubt the children will be very happy with Yard Sale Pizza and (if they behave) a visit to the Soft Serve Society dessert bar.
Where it it? 472 Fulham Road, London, SW6 1BY