Marché Artisan Foods – East Nashville

May 23, 2008 at 10:20 pm 3 comments

Since the lovely Britt S. was part of the inspiration for this little project, naturally it would make sense to write about her birthday brunch for my first post. Last Saturday, the day of Miss Britt’s birth, several twenty-something locals gathered at Marché Artisan Foods for a lovely birthday brunch.

Marché (a French word meaning “marketplace”) is a European-style cafe and marketplace specializing in brunch but also serving breakfast, lunch, and early dinner. With large, weathered farmhouse tables and wicker chairs, the atmosphere of Marché reminds me of Sunday dinner on my great grandmother’s back porch. The market area stocks specialty items in pastoral wooden cabinets, and diners who want to order at the counter can claim seats at one of the large rustic communal tables nearby. Two steps down, in the full-service dining room, you’ll find marble-topped tables with natural light streaming through two walls of floor to ceiling windows, giving the look of a Parisian sidewalk café brought indoors.

Marché is the epitome of shabby chic – the perfect place for a Bridesmaids’ brunch or an afternoon croissant and café au lait with your best girlfriends. Though Marché is a little on the girlie side, it wasn’t too terribly frou-frou for the guys in our diverse group. However, one of them did end up eating a sandwich from another establishment afterwards, as the Marché menu was not quite as filling as he would have liked. The dining room is small and intimate, but larger groups can be accommodated if a reservation is made.

Marche’ has separate menus for breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner. The menus also vary seasonally. Selections include breads, pastries, cheeses, French toast, soups, salads, omelets, sandwiches, quiches, and crêpes. Desserts include crème brûlée, yogurt with fresh berries, biscotti, and a selection of cookies, tarts, cakes, and pastries. Specialty drink selections include mimosa, sangria, a marvelous café au lait, and a choice of wines.

While waiting on our entire group to arrive, I sipped on café au lait, which was served in a large bowl-like cup atop a little white saucer. The natural sugar available at the table added just the right amount of sweetness. For brunch, I had a small bowl of house made granola with vanilla yogurt (a favorite of mine) and a fruit cup that included pineapple, grapes, and strawberries. The granola and yogurt was delicious (best I’ve ever eaten), and the fruit cup was definitely fresh.

For the guys, I would recommend the croissant French toast, topped with Vermont maple syrup and powdered sugar, and a side of chicken sausage. I was able to sample my husband’s, and it was delish. I don’t usually like French toast, but I quite enjoyed Marché’s version. The difference for me was that it was made from a croissant as opposed to toasted bread. It was crispy, not soggy. As for the chicken sausage, which I have never tasted before, it was a large link sausage, and I have to say that I’m a fan.

There was also a vegetarian with our group. There were several vegetarian menu items available, and she settled on an omelet with tomato, onion, and peppers. She did, however, have to send it back to be remade because the original omelet brought to her contained chicken. Other than that, the service was pretty average – no grand atrocities, but nothing special, either.

Marché is a place that I would love to revisit, especially since I didn’t get a chance to sample any of the beautiful desserts. I could only hope that they tasted as good as they looked. I would recommend Marché to anyone who is looking for a light, café style brunch (breakfast and lunch as well). As I said earlier, it does lean more toward the girlie side, but your husband, boyfriend, father, etc. won’t complain too much if you bring him along. The setting is perfect for a stylish Bridesmaids’ brunch, a casual Sunday lunch, an afternoon gabfest with your besties, a Mother’s Day indulgence, ladies who lunch. I would not recommend Marché for date night, a Super Bowl party, your husband’s birthday, or anything that predominately involves males. Hint to guys, this is a great place to take your lady for brunch if you want to show her that you have a sweet, romantic side.

Café au lait

Croissant French toast with chicken sausage

House made granola with vanilla yogurt and a fruit cup

Must have items: café au lait, croissant French toast

Could have done without it: Sangria

What makes it special: shabby-chic atmosphere, French-inspired menu

Know before you go: If you have a large group, it’s best to make a reservation. Everything on the menu is available for take-out. There is also a large selection of marketplace items for your pantry if you abhor corporate supermarkets.

Parking: There is an adequately sized lot across the street – no parking fee.

Price: $

Web site: www.marcheartisanfoods.com

Phone: 615.262.1111

Address: 1000 Main Street, East Nashville, TN 37206

Hours: Tuesday-Friday: 8am – 9pm (Dinner served 5-9pm); Saturday Brunch: 8am – 4pm;Sunday Brunch: 9am – 4pm


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Entry filed under: $1-10, Brunch, Cafe, French, Nashville. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , .

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3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Kim  |  May 23, 2008 at 10:54 pm

    You are so awesome!!! I love it!!

  • 2. S for Kitchen Confit  |  May 23, 2008 at 11:25 pm

    Love Marche. Now you’ve got to review Margot next.

  • 3. laura  |  May 24, 2008 at 4:34 pm

    @Kim – you are welcome to give any constructive criticism as well.

    @S – Margot is on the list, but it may be a while before I get to it. You’re the second person who has suggested Margot.

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