About Caribou Cafe

Step into the vibrant world of Paris. This 25 year old landmark has brought Philadelphia and its visitors a taste of France in a relaxed atmosphere.
The art deco bar, leather banquettes, warm orange walls, and antique mirrors make Caribou Café your destination for Lunch, Dinner and Brunch.
Live music Fri and Sat.
Best True French Bistro in town!

1126 Walnut St
Philadelphia, PA 19107
View Larger Map

Dining Style:
Casual Dining

Cuisines:
French, Wine Bar, Comfort Food

Hours of Operation:
Sunday - Thursday: 11:30am - 10:30pm;
Friday - Saturday: 11:30am - 11:30pm;

Cross Street:
12th Street

Dress Code:
Business Casual

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(215) 625-9535

Website:
http://www.cariboucafe.com/

Entertainment:
Friday and Saturday Night 8:30-11:30pm
Original Jazz trio

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cafe, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

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Caribou Cafe Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.3

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.2

service

4.4

ambience

4.3

value

4.2

Noise

Moderate

97% would recommend it to a friend

Pre/post Theatre (34)
Cozy (26)
Neighborhood Gem (26)
See All
Good for a Date (24)
Authentic (24)
Quiet Conversation (22)
Casual (21)
Bar Seating (18)
Creative Cuisine (16)
Romantic (15)
Special Occasion (15)
Business Meals (15)
Handcrafted Cocktails (14)
Fun (13)
Good for Anniversaries (12)
Good for Birthdays (12)
Great for Brunch (12)
Comfort Food (12)
Fit for Foodies (11)
Great for Lunch (11)
Sunday Lunch (10)
Afternoon Coffee (9)
Happy Hour (9)
Good for Groups (8)
Notable Wine List (8)
Great for Outdoor Dining (6)
People Watching (6)
Great Beer (5)
Healthy (5)
Quick Bite (5)
Vibrant Bar Scene (5)
Worth the Drive (4)
Afternoon Tea (3)
Hot Spot (3)
Tasting Menu (3)
Late-night Find (2)
Local Ingredients (2)
Seasonal (2)
Good Vegetarian Options (2)
Kid-friendly (1)
Scenic View (1)
Vegan (1)
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707 reviews
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 (Philadelphia)·Dined 2 days ago

Good restaurant week selections. Attentive service.
Bathroom sink needs some attention.

Tags: Special Occasion, Authentic, Pre/post Theatre
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined 4 days ago

We went for lunch during restaurant week. The value was outstanding. The food is always excellent and today was no exception. You really feel like you’re in Paris when you go to this restaurant. It’s just a lovely place all around.

Tags: Authentic, Quiet Conversation, Romantic, Cozy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined 4 days ago

It was easy to find on Walnut Street. Off street parking is around the corner on 12th street. A short walk.
They have a beautiful bar. The people I was with liked the cocktails and beer. Desserts were very good. The dinner we chose was Fish. It was good! The restaurant had a nice atmosphere.

Tags: Healthy, Creative Cuisine, Fit for Foodies, Great Beer, Romantic, Notable Wine List, Bar Seating, Worth the Drive, Vibrant Bar Scene, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Afternoon Tea, Good for Birthdays, Handcrafted Cocktails, Business Meals, Good for a Date, Cozy, Quiet Conversation, Authentic, Casual, Pre/post Theatre
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined 5 days ago

Rstaurant week menu was lovely
Service exactly right. Endive salad terrific!

Tags: Hot Spot, Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups, Seasonal, Great for Lunch, Neighborhood Gem, Late-night Find, Casual, Great for Brunch, Sunday Lunch, Good for Birthdays, Afternoon Coffee, Cozy, Good for Anniversaries, Creative Cuisine, Bar Seating, Happy Hour
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 12, 2018

You can depend on a very good meal here. The atmosphere is authentically French, as is the food.I find the booths especially good for lunchtime business conversations.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Business Meals, Authentic, Quiet Conversation
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 7, 2018

Decent dining, nothing was extraordinary but nothing was bad either.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience4
service4
value3

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 6, 2018

A very good spot to eat after a Walnut St. theater matinee. You can eat at any time without having to wait until five or five thirty to get dinner.

Pleasant place good food and nice staff.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
·Dined on January 1, 2018

What a fabulous evening we had! My boyfriend and I spent New Year's Eve here for dinner. The prefix menu was amazing. The courses were prompt, service was quick and efficient, and the food was beyond incredible. We will be back!

Tags: Notable Wine List, Romantic, Special Occasion, Cozy, Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on December 30, 2017

Lovely evening with good French food/wine in a spacious, comfortable room (a bit warm upstairs); excellent service.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Casual, Notable Wine List
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food4
ambience4
service5
value3

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on December 23, 2017

Caribou Cafe is by far one of the nicest restaurants in the city. A charming, French inspired atmosphere, wonderful food and possibly the nicest wait staff in all PHILADELPHIA. We frequent almost every weekend and have never had anything but a fantastic time. Drop in, have a glass of delicious wine or an ice cold tap brew, grab some wonderful food and feel like a long time friend. Highly recommend!

Tags: Late-night Find, Good for Anniversaries, Good for Groups, Quiet Conversation, Good for Birthdays, Afternoon Tea, Great for Brunch, Great for Outdoor Dining, Authentic, Vibrant Bar Scene, People Watching, Special Occasion, Creative Cuisine, Great for Lunch, Cozy, Fun, Business Meals, Afternoon Coffee, Notable Wine List, Great Beer, Good for a Date, Sunday Lunch, Romantic, Neighborhood Gem, Handcrafted Cocktails, Bar Seating, Pre/post Theatre, Happy Hour
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on December 16, 2017

I loved dining at this charming French bistro located only a few doors down the street from the Forrest Theater where my friend and I had seen a show.

The food and service were wonderful. Noise level was minimal. We were seated on the 2nd floor balcony level. It is a great find for me and I will definitely be returning in the future.

Tags: Bar Seating, Special Occasion, Cozy, Romantic, Casual, Pre/post Theatre, Sunday Lunch, Fit for Foodies, Neighborhood Gem, Fun, Good for a Date, Good for Birthdays, Comfort Food
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on December 16, 2017

Delicious food.......Very friendly atmosphere.......The service is outstanding.

Tags: Afternoon Coffee, Vegan, Handcrafted Cocktails, Happy Hour, Special Occasion, People Watching
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on December 16, 2017

We have been at this restaurant several times in the past, largely due to its convenience to the Forrest Theater.
On this occasion, for lunch before a matinee, we were first lead to a table that did not appeal to us -- upstairs right by the stairs, subject to lots of traffic. We were early and there were plenty of available tables, so we requested a less challenging location and were accommodated.
Our waiter was excellent. I mentioned to him that I need to drink lots of water during a meal and he brought over a small pitcher of water.
Overall, it worked out well for our purposes.

Tags: Cozy
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food4
ambience4
service5
value3

 
·Dined on December 15, 2017

The service was very good but the food was not as good as it has been on previous occasions. The frites (from my steak frites) was fried in a dirty fryer (i.e. the frites were a bit clumpy with bits of food or batter from previous frys.) My apple tart tatin wasn't warm and I needed an knife to cut through the ice cream that came with it.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience4
service5
value3

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on December 15, 2017

Caribou Cafe is our “go to” restaurant before heading to Lantern Theater. This time our party had the Beef Bourguinon (fantastic), cod (tasty), and the burger (a surprise hit for a French bistro). The wines-by-the-glass are reliably good, and the ambianace always congenial.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience3
service3
value3

 
·Dined on December 14, 2017

The food was good. The server was not attentive. Had to ask over and over for the same thing. Then he was in a hurry to get us out and starting taking things off of the table before we were finished.

1 person found this review helpful.
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service1
value4

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on December 9, 2017

I have eaten at Caribou numerous times and never had a bad meal. The chef is unbelievable.

Tags: Good for a Date, Sunday Lunch, Special Occasion, Business Meals, Cozy, Pre/post Theatre, Great for Brunch, Notable Wine List
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on December 9, 2017

Look forward to returning to try other menu items. Was impressed with staff attention to our needs. After a late train we needed to get to the theater on time. The staff accommodated us and also moved us to a more spacious setting as it became available.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Great for Lunch
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Phoenix)·Dined on December 7, 2017

Amazing ambiance and food to match. Just love this place. The three course, prix fixe menu is a real bargain. Come in, sit back, relax and enjoy

Tags: Good for a Date, Quiet Conversation, Good for Anniversaries, Business Meals, Cozy, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service4
value5

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on December 5, 2017

When we are in Center City during lunchtime, Caribou Cafe is our default dinery for excellent food and service. We were pleasantly surprised that the house bubbly (French, from Chardonnay but not a Champagne) was excellent. The food, as always, is uniformly delicious and appetizingly presented. Service is both friendly and quite professional. The light jazz background music synchronizes perfectly with the Parisian ambiance.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Local Ingredients, Good for Birthdays, Great for Lunch, Casual, Worth the Drive, Hot Spot, Special Occasion, Romantic, Authentic, Fun, Pre/post Theatre, Bar Seating, Sunday Lunch, Neighborhood Gem, Quiet Conversation, Vibrant Bar Scene, Good for Anniversaries, Handcrafted Cocktails, Business Meals, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Dallas)·Dined on December 3, 2017

We were celebrating a birthday. We were very disappointed with the food. Non of the dishes we ordered were good. Fries were clumped together. The crock monsieur/ madam were soggy. The egg Benedict was hard boiled egg etc. It was embarrassing.
The waiter was nice.
Second floor at the time we arrived was empty which gave us privacy. However the food was embarrassing.

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food1
ambience3
service3
value2

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on December 3, 2017

The restaurant needs an upgrade. It feels old/dated. One of the lights on the two bar centerpieces was out. The food was not good - I had a burger that was charred and not too tasty. My wife's dish, a crepe, was drowned in sauce. I'd go back for a drink but skip dinner.

Tags: Bar Seating
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food2
ambience3
service4
value3

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on December 3, 2017

My favorite center city Bistro. Wonderful French food. Everything is great but the mussels are superb. Sidewalk tables are great for people watching in warm weather.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Business Meals, Great for Brunch, Cozy, People Watching
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on December 2, 2017

Great food. Prompt service. Noise level was just right for conversation. Would recommend it as a great place to have a casual dinner.

Tags: Comfort Food, Fun, Great for Lunch, Casual
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food4
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on November 27, 2017

Onion soup was cold and had little taste.
Potato leek soup no flavor.
Croque Messieurs was terrible. Nowhere near the real thing.
2 orders of escargot were sandy.
Desserts were good as was the wine

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food1
ambience3
service4
value1

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on November 25, 2017

Great place to go before (or after) theater. Complete wine list, great specials of the day for food, reasonable priced and impeccable service.

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Great for Brunch, Healthy, Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion, Quick Bite
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on November 19, 2017

Had a great time taking my mom to one of her favorite restaurants in the city.

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food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on November 18, 2017

Enjoy their fall menu. The salmon, duck confit and chef's steak were very good. The beef bourgeigon was a little on the dry side. Service was excellent.

Tags: Seasonal
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food4
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on November 17, 2017

I have eaten there before and enjoyed the meal which is why I decided to go again since I would be in the city.Service excellent as well as the food.Cozy atmosphere.Not highly priced.Would recommend to others.Thank you,Earlene Selk

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Cozy, Casual, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on November 15, 2017

This was my first visit to Caribou Cafe. It was recommended by the friend with whom I dined, and it did not disappoint. It's a cute place. The service was friendly and efficient. And the food is amazing. I had the beef bourguignon (tender and delicious) and creme brulee. I will definitely return.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Good for a Date, Handcrafted Cocktails, Pre/post Theatre
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Chicago)·Dined on November 14, 2017

We chose Caribou Cafe because of its proximity to a theater we were attending. The food was OK, nothing special. We were there early so it was quiet and service was good.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre
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food3
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on November 12, 2017

The service was attentive without being overbearing. The mussels in the creme fraiche sauce were fantastic. Nice variety of house wines.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on November 11, 2017

Great food and ambience - the evening we were there - they were short of staff.

Tags: Healthy
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food5
ambience5
service3
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on November 8, 2017

Nice dinner. As usual, our meals were delicious. We would definitely return again.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on November 5, 2017

We sat outside on one of the last warm days of the season. The waiter was prompt and helpful. We liked the variety of choices on the Brunch menu. I thoroughly enjoyed the mushroom crepe and my friend liked his chicken hash. We recommend the Caribou.

Tags: Special Occasion, Pre/post Theatre, Great for Brunch
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food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Chicago)·Dined on November 5, 2017

Food ok - quality/price on expensive side.
Frisee salad with lardons and poached eggs did not taste bad, just that the presentation was aweful and non-classic. Would have been better with more greens, less of the rest. The cassoulet was good, the canard confit could have been a tad crispier.
No wine from Languedoc from list, but there was a juicy Chinon which paired well with the cassoulet. The noise level was deafening (primarily due to acoustic, as there were quite a few empty tables), which would have been OK if everything else (including the service) had a tad more French-touch. It is understood that the restaurant-cafe is informal, but part of the French restaurant experience (more so than any other cuisine) is the structured approach to the service. Too much loosey goosey maybe democratic but it ain’t French! But will return.

Tags: Comfort Food
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food3
ambience3
service3
value2

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on November 4, 2017

Not only is the food delicious and appetizing, the staff makes you feel welcome and comfortable.
Definitely the place to go.

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, Fun, Special Occasion, Comfort Food, Pre/post Theatre, Casual
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (New England)·Dined on October 24, 2017

Why isn't this place more popular? I've been four times now over the past three years and find it always good and always fun. The place is a classic french bistro plunked down in Philly, complete with the dark wood, confortable booths, Lillet and Follies Bergere posters, gilt lettering on mirrors, and storefront that can be opened up for indoor/outdoor seating around bistro tables. A fairly eclectic menu with a core of bistro staples like Steak Frites, mussels, and Salade Nicoise. I've had both the steak and the salad and both were done very nicely (although they do the salad with a cold chunk of poached salmon rather than the more traditional tuna). There are just enough French wines to make it interesting. Their two Cotes de Rhone (Kermit-Lynch and Cornas) are great examples of CDR. No matter what time I've been there, the place is never more than half-full. I don't get it. Not world-class, but certainly better, more reliable, and less-stuffy than many, many trendy Philly restaurants. I'll be back - a go-to when I travel to Center City.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Neighborhood Gem, Fit for Foodies, Good for a Date, Casual, Quiet Conversation, Fun, Romantic, Business Meals, Happy Hour, Authentic, Bar Seating
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food4
ambience5
service4
value5

 
·Dined on October 22, 2017

Love this restaurant. Food was great. Atmosphere and staff wonderful. Great place to catch up with friends.

Tags: Sunday Lunch, Cozy, Afternoon Tea, Comfort Food, Great for Lunch, Casual, Good for Groups, Happy Hour
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Orleans)·Dined on October 21, 2017

Great food, great atmosphere, great service.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

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