Nearby points of interest
Nearby points of interest
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!
Philadelphia, PA 19107
French, Wine Bar, Comfort Food
Hours of Operation:
Sunday - Thursday: 11:30am - 10:30pm;
Friday - Saturday: 11:30am - 11:30pm;
$30 and under
AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Friday and Saturday Night 8:30-11:30pm
Original Jazz trio
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
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Food, as always was very good, waiter was not. While very friendly, he would not check for the wine I prefer which is on again off again on the menu, but is usually available even when not on the menu. Took our order for appetizers but only my wife's soup arrived. When questioned about the status of my son's octopus and my escargot he realized that he forgot to write down my son's order and never placed mine. He offered to put in my order, but by that time our entrees were on their way. Bread is always provided, but the waiter had to be prompted to bring bread. I have always enjoyed my evenings at Caribou Cafe with a glass of Muscadet and light dinner fare. Usually the wait staff is wonderful, but obviously even the most delightful experiences can be tarnished.
TOTALLY Enjoyed our Meal. The Lemon Drop was the best my wife has ever had - she ordered a second (which she seldom does). Onion Soup was excellent. Very Authentic French Casual fare. Service was outstanding, A perfect beginning to our evening - pre-performance meal then on to the Walnut Street Theater to se.e A Funny Thing Happened on the way to the Forum
Always wanted to try this place, and finally got a chance when we were running some errands nearby, so we stopped in for an early dinner. Didn't even know it was Restaurant Week, or I might not have gone in. (In my experience, many restaurants are so busy and hassled during Restaurant Week that they aren't on their best game.) Not the case here. They offered a choice of the regular menu or the Restaurant Week menu (which most places don't anymore), and everything was great. I might not have given all 5 stars if it weren't restaurant week, but if they could accomplish this food and service when it WAS, then I can only imagine what it's like on regular nights.
The only thing I can fault is that "Absinthe fountain service" isn't a fountain - it's a carafe of ice water. The resulting drink is the same, but the experience is very different than using a true fountain to drip the water over the sugar. A minor quibble, I know, but they should update the menu if they don't have the fountain.
Neither posh, nor "the happening place", but a congenial place that was quiet enough to dine and chat with friends. The service was unobtrusive but still attentive. The menu was varied enough for anyone to find something and the offerings were well crafted, inventive, and tasty. I would trade a "wow" menu for a solid, but quiet, dining experience any time.
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