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“As good as ever, if not better”
Review of Market Bistro

Market Bistro
Ranked #1 of 186 Restaurants in King's Lynn
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $14 - $27
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Local cuisine, Large groups, Special occasions, Business meetings, Families with children
Dining options: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Late Night, Reservations
Description: Small, family run, informal bistro with an emphasis on casual dining using local, sustainable produce. Owned and loved by chef owner Richard and his wife Lucy.
London
Level 3 Contributor
23 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
“As good as ever, if not better”
Reviewed March 4, 2014

Another superb meal here. Their own cure smoked salmon is fantastic. Pork seems to be a favourite of the chef, and my plate of belly, cheek and a "scotch egg" of quail's egg encased in black pudding was delicious. My partner was very happy with her chicken dish too - all beautifully presented. The "rhubarb concoction" which reviewer Richard C found too tart was just right for my palate - rhubarb cooked "al dente" rather than soft plus lovely elderflower jelly on a light, thin custardy base. Service as good and friendly as ever. Can't fault this restaurant (and no, I'm not connected with the place, just a fan and a regular customer).

  • Visited March 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank rogerbilder
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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637 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Fairford, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
76 reviews
55 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Let down by service”
Reviewed March 2, 2014

After reading the rave reviews about this place we thought we had to try this place as KL is a culinary wasteland.

All went well with the ordering....I went for the "pork" and my wife went for the "fish".

My pork was fantastic, I'd certainly commend it to anyone, however my wifes pollack was STONE cold. Not even tepid. She complained politely to the server who apologetically took it away. No problems there, however she came back to deliver a patronising spiel (obviously from the chef) that it was cooked in a waterbath and would never be above 50 degrees. Now my wife isn't an idiot, and is familiar with cooking techniques, but the fish was cold, completely cold. It had obviously been left on the pass too long.

Very bad show by the chef sending out the waitress to patronise customers and after that point frankly the meal was ruined and we won't return or recommend the place to friends or family. Such a shame.

  • Visited March 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank BigDuke666
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
mbkl2010, Owner at Market Bistro, responded to this review, March 3, 2014
Thank for taking the time to review our bistro.

I honestly believe there has been a huge misunderstanding of the situation, it was not our intention to patronise but merely explain how the fish was cooked.

My husband spoke to your wife and explained this and apologised at the time.

I am so sorry for any misunderstanding
Lucy Golding
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
King's Lynn, United Kingdom
1 review
“There's only one problem with the Market Bistro.....”
Reviewed February 28, 2014

...... it's all too good! Reading the short but clearly local menu encouraged both of us to try new things, and we were not disappointed. The chicken liver pate starter was delicious and the onion chutney/jam that came with it was something I would usually have left, but having tried it, I then demolished it! Totally gorgeous! My fiancé's goats cheese and beetroot starter was similarly delicious.

Our mains were the beef from the specials board with triple cooked chips, and a fish pie. I had the pie, a very generous portion which I hated to leave any of, but badly wanted room for pudding so I did leave part of the delicious mustard mash - strong enough to be mustardy, not so strong that it obliterated the flavour of the huge chunks of salmon and pollack that just melted in my mouth. My fiancé's beef was superb. The waitress had taken her time to explain how it was cooked (vacuum packed water bath - something I've seen done by Heston but never tried) and made sure we knew it would come medium rare. I was (grudgingly and after a lot of persuasion!) able to try the smallest bit of his beef, and I could see why he was so curmudgeonly about it! It was amazing! He refused to share his chips at all!

Our desserts were 'chocolate' and 'cheese'. We swapped halfway through desserts, so I can say with authority that both were sublime. The chocolate mousse was rich and velvety, with a salted caramel sauce that cut through the potential over sweetness with just the right tone. The local cheeseboard was outrageously good, and again, although I am in no way a fan of walnuts, the walnut bread was something else I am very glad I tried.

All in all, it was an excellent evening, with attentive, knowledgable but unintrusive service, food clearly sourced and cooked by a skilled and passionate team, and a very congenial atmosphere. We spent part of our evening planning who we could bring there as an excuse to come back!

  • Visited February 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Sarah C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
King's Lynn, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Market Bistro King's Lynn”
Reviewed February 28, 2014

Having had an enjoyable meal here some months ago, we decided to go again taking family members visiting us. This time was very disappointing. Rather than immediately jumping to leave a review, I wrote to the restaurant. However, have not received even an acknowledgement of my letter after a month, I decided I should post a review - and the easy way is to provide a verbatim copy of my letter!

"I feel I must write and tell you how disappointed we were with our meal last night. We had visited your restaurant last autumn and thoroughly enjoyed it, so when our son and daughter- in-law came to visit, we were confident of giving them an equally enjoyable experience.

The first impression this time was that we were seated at a table which was not really big enough for 4 people, and in addition was situated near both the loud telephone and a noisy coffee machine, which was irritating. Admittedly, when I booked the day before, you were already almost fully booked - on the other hand we did take the very early booking you offered, at 6pm.

Compared with our earlier visit, the menu this time seemed to be very uninteresting, and the fact that 2 of us ordered burgers reflected that. Even the specials board was limited, and one of the main items on it - the flat-iron steak - was on the normal menu anyway. One of our party chose the steak, but even at the ordering stage we had our doubts. It was explained that the steak was served medium rare with no option for either more or less cooking, because it was slow cooked for 5 hrs at a low temperature in a steam bath - presumably then reheated?

On our previous visit, my son and I had shared, and enjoyed, the mixed hors-d’oeuvre, so we ordered it again. This time the selection was nowhere near as nice, very bland in fact.
The burgers were fine, but it was largely the uninteresting menu that steered us in that direction. The £15.99 Pinot Grigio was ok too, though the bottle looked remarkably like the £5.99 bottle from Virgin Wine which is sitting in my garage.

Three of us had ice creams for dessert and they were very nice. The fourth choice was the rhubarb concoction, one of your chefs explained the thinking behind this as providing contrasting colours and textures, but to be honest it sounded more like an exercise in a 5th form science class, a bit pretentious in fact. One contrast which wasn’t mentioned was taste - the thinly shaved bits of rhubarb were far too tart to enjoy!

The service throughout was very good, but that did not entirely make up for the quality of the food - a disappointing evening I am afraid."

  • Visited February 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank Richard C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
mbkl2010, Owner at Market Bistro, responded to this review, March 3, 2014
Thank you taking the time to review our bistro.

I am so sorry but this is the first I have heard of your disappointment.

I am also sorry that you did not enjoy your evening, I served you personally that evening and asked you on numerous occasions if everything was ok. I would have been more than happy to move you, had you requested, and I would have been more than happy to discuss and resolve any of the points raised with you on the evening.

I hate to think that any of our customers leave disappointed but unfortunately I cannot do anything after the event.

Being family run either myself or my husband are always at the bistro and available to talk to you should you wish.

kindest regards
Lucy Golding
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 4 Contributor
32 reviews
23 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“The best thing in Kings Lynn”
Reviewed February 20, 2014 via mobile

Excellent food and wine, lovely atmosphere and friendly staff.
The chicken with black pudding is fabulous and beautifully presented, every mouthful was heaven.
I have to say the Market Bistro is one of my favourite places to eat and I wish I lived nearer to Kings Lynn. However, it's well worth the 1 hour drive to enjoy Richards cooking.

Visited February 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank blackshiraz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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