A brilliant French cafe brasserie in East London

1032 Reviews

Star Travel Rating

5/5

Review type

Things to do

Date of travel

April, 2023

Product name

Provdender

Product country

UK

Product city

Wanstead, East London

Travelled with

Couple

Reasons for trip

Culture/Sightseeing

Having read positive reviews about Provender, an independent French café brasserie on Wanstead’s High Street, I chose it for catching up with a friend over lunch.

We met next door at The Cuckfield for a pre-lunch drink before our booked table at 1pm.

Although Provender has a small sunny pavement terrace, there was a chilly wind, and we were glad we were sat inside. The small restaurant had only 75 covers and our table, normally for four, had the extra chair removed and the place setting in the middle which was a nice touch and made it feel more inclusive.

I’d read about an excellent value menu of two courses for £15 or three for £19, but as the website described it is a ‘market menu’, I thought it might be very limited with dishes I didn’t like. So I’d already decided on alternatives from the a la carte: a starter of arancini (£5.50) and a main of Souffle au Reblochon (£15.50). You can imagine my delight when both dishes were on the small chalkboard with the set menu.

We nibbled on olives and wonderful French bread and butter whilst the others chose, also from the set menu. Both opted for Bayonne ham which came with melba toast and rémoulade, and pork rib eye, a delicious tender piece of pork with a light jus and French fries. My dishes were superb with the three arancini being placed on a little aioli and the twice baked souffle being served with confit onion, artichoke and crème fraiche which kept it light.

Whilst I’m not a pudding person, it was hard to resist a tart au citron, but I was pleased it wasn’t too big and came adorned with fresh raspberries and coulis.

When food menus are often good value, the sting in the tail is the price of the wine. But here the Carte des Vins had four whites under £25, although we opted for the house at an incredible £16.95. We should have had our apéritifs here as in the pub I’d paid £23.50 for a bottle of white. There were also several wines sold by the glass (including 125ml) and 500ml carafe.

The service from two guys, who could have been father and son, was excellent and unobtrusive. The wine bucket was placed near us, and if they were on hand, glasses were refilled, but if you poured yourself, they didn’t immediately rush towards you to take over.

The ambience was casually elegant with a buzzy vibe to the place, and so we had a simply fabulous experience, and cannot wait to return.

Helen Jackson

Join the club

Become a member to receive exclusive benefits

Our community is the heart of Silver Travel Advisor, we love nothing more than sharing ideas, inspiration, hints and tips between us.

Come feel the love on a Princess cruise. You’ll enjoy the MedallionClass experience others simply can’t, and it’s exclusively for everyone. Visit incredible destinations and be involved in the best experiences around each one of them.

Experience more with Princess and connect effortlessly with the world around you, spend time away with loved ones, take a moment for yourself, and fall in love with your holiday of a lifetime, every time.

With over 20 years of experience, Wendy Wu Tours has mastered the art of creating exceptional, fully inclusive tours which showcase the very best of each destination.

Each tour is led by a world-class guide, who will highlight the very best of their homeland, and includes authentic cultural experiences so you are not just seeing the sights, but truly immersing yourself in local life.

Say hello to ease at sea. Ambassador’s purpose is simple: they want to inspire every guest to experience authentic cruising, effortlessly and sustainably. Passionate about protecting our oceans and destinations, their ships comply with the highest industry emission standards and there is no single-use plastic on board.

On your voyage, you will receive the warmest of welcomes from the Ambassador community as you sail upon the friendliest ships afloat.

This is a global co-operative co-owned by local partners using real local experts and guides, which supports local communities, environments and wildlife. It offers travellers quirky places to stay, activity holidays and learning experiences. Not In The Guidebooks gets travellers off the beaten track into local culture with day experiences and longer, immersive adventures.

From wild wellness breaks in Wales to painting in Portugal, sustainable adventures in Mauritius to food safaris in Brazil, this is immersive, exciting travel.

Seabourn’s five intimate ships carry guests to the heart of great cities, exclusive yacht harbours and secluded coves around the world, while two new purpose-built expedition ships will combine exhilarating adventures in remote destinations with the sophisticated amenities of the world’s finest resorts at sea.

From the luxury of all suite accommodations to complimentary fine wines and spirits, and a no tipping policy, Seabourn exemplifies the definition of travelling well.