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“Posh prices for a not posh cafe.” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Maison Blanc

Maison Blanc
Ranked #83 of 233 Restaurants in Chichester
Cuisines: Cafe, French
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Child-friendly
Dining options: Brunch, Breakfast, Lunch, Highchairs Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Description: Located on South Street just a few minutes' walk from the Cathedral and Southgate. Stephane and his friendly team will give you a warm welcome and look forward to serving you a seasonal cafe menu, afternoon tea, delicious pastries and patisserie. Plenty of seating available. Licensed. Maison Blanc is an artisan bakery renowned for its speciality breads, freshly baked pastries, seasonal menu and of course world famous cakes and patisserie - all handmade to perfection and simply bursting with seasonal flavour.We're passionate about serving innovative, charming and authentically French food that leaves our customers craving for more. Our core value is Tradition et Qualite which remains at the heart of everything we do from sourcing the finest and freshest ingredients, to the creation of our recipes and presentation of our food.Originally created in Oxford in 1980, we were the first authentic patisserie in England. We now serve a little slice of France in 14 locations around London and the South. Our cafes are the perfect place for a rendez-vous with family and friendsWe adopt a joie-de vie attitude and believe that life should be enjoyed one delicate macaroon at a time.
Portsmouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
256 reviews
161 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 243 helpful votes
“Posh prices for a not posh cafe.”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 December 2013

A high street ( South Street actually) location for a coffee or tea. On the day the tea was PG Tips - so don't expect too much eh!

I used a Groupon voucher for tea for 2 with wine.
Actually it would have been cheaper to march in - confused and not happy about that!

The pastries were small, delicate, well made and well presented, which they should be, it is a patisserie! No group consensus on the favourite, the lemon meringue was light.

Zero atmosphere or charm, sadly.
Lovely shaped tea cups buy no nice delicate pastry forks, sadly.
Girls serving were pleasant enough but there was no 'service', no effort and no attentiveness.

If the staff upped their game the whole thing would have felt better.

In truth I'll not return as so many seemingly far better places to explore and enjoy.

  • Visited December 2013
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank HappyHayling
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Maison B, Manager at Maison Blanc, responded to this review, 11 February 2014
Thank you very much for your feedback and also for trying the Groupon offer we are currently running.

It seems there could have been a little confusion on the Groupon price: the Maison Blanc Afternoon Tea on our regular menu does not include the two glasses of wine that are offered with the Groupon, hence the lower price than the one mentioned on the offer.
Regarding the tea we use, Twinnings and Jing Tea are the two brands we use. My sincerest apologies that this did not seem to be the case on your recent visit, I have addressed this with my team.

Your feedback regarding some delicate pastry forks is most appreciated and we have fed this back to the relevant department. I do hope that you will visit us again in order to restore your faith in Maison Blanc, Chichester. Please do not hesitate to introduce yourself to me if you decide to return, I would be very happy to offer your next afternoon tea on us.

Kind regards,

Stephane
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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168 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Greek first
  • Any
English first
Swindon, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
192 reviews
128 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
“Not as good as it looks”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 December 2013

We stopped here for a couple of coffees & cakes. The coffee was good but the cakes were a bit of a let-down. My husband's mince pie was nice but a bit overpriced. I had lemon polenta cake which is usually soft & crumbly. This one was hard & not very lemony. I suspect it was left-over from the previous day. On the plus side, it filled me up for hours! The atmosphere was nice & the staff were very friendly, but they need to improve the cakes or lower the prices to make this a better café.

  • Visited November 2013
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Nicola R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Maison B, Manager at Maison Blanc, responded to this review, 5 December 2013
Thank you very much Nicola for your feedback, it is very important for us to know how we can improve our products.

I was sorry to hear that you thought our mince pies were a little on the pricey side and I have fed this back to the relevant department for consideration in the pricing of all of our products.

The quality issue raised regarding the citronnier is also very concerning. I have fed this back to our bakery team for assessment.

Meanwhile, I am more than happy to reimburse you for this product but also have you as our guest to try another on us, or any of our other cakes. Please give me a call on 01243 539292 to arrange this.

Thank you very much for your kind feedback on the service you received, I will be sure to pass this onto my team.

Kind regards,

Stephane
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
havant
1 review
“Disappointed”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 November 2013

My daughter & I visited Maison Blanc expecting something special but were disappointed. Our lunch was very small portions with 1 slice of cucumber, 1 slice of tomato & 7 very tiny pieces of lettuce which had seem better days, we waited ages for service & my cup & saucer were delivered to our table with a very dirty stained tea spoon. just before we left we visited the toilets which were in much need of a deep clean & the smell was unbearable. The cakes looked delicious, I ordered the St. Michel aux Fruits Rouges which was presented with the plastic ring holding it together which was impossible for me to get off & quite difficult to eat with it on, taste was so so !! definitely would not return & will not be recommending!

  • Visited November 2013
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Lynn J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Maison B, Manager at Maison Blanc, responded to this review, 18 November 2013
Thank you very much for taking the time to write your review, and I am sorry to hear your visit was so disappointing.

The portions we serve are usually for a light lunch and the side salad usually takes just about the size of the plate’s corner. The portion you had however seems to be a little on the light side, so I will have a talk with our Chef on that day.

I can only apologise for the slow service as well, the day you visited us was an unusually busy day for us, but we are working on making things smoother.

Lastly, I am aware that the toilets need a little love and refurbishing. They are however cleaned every day, deep cleaned regularly, there are automatic air fresheners in both the ladies and gents and we do check them throughout the day as well.

I offer you my apologies again as well as the promise that we will improve our procedures.

Thank you for your feedback.

Kind regards,
Stephane.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
West Sussex
Level Contributor
203 reviews
142 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 119 helpful votes
“How to rate this?”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 October 2013

Visited with my mum during a day of shopping in Chichester. We had been a year or so ago and remembered it was nice from then.
It wasn't very busy so we got a table straight away. It has been done up since our last visit and whilst I can see what they were trying to achieve in some respects, it is quite lacking in character and could be any cafe as opposed to what used to feel a little more like a cosy french cafe.
The service was a little slow - menus were handed to us and I'd spotted an picture on the way in of a salmon croque monsieur which looked lovely. I couldn't find it on the menu and on further looking found a specials list on another table which we didn't have on ours so nearly missed out there! Menus seemed to be hit and miss as to whether they had any mention of specials. The menus could also do with a bit of a wipe/refresh in places too - a bit grubby. On the subject of grubby - the toilet could really do with a bit of an overhaul!
We had a bit of a wait for our food but when it arrived it was nice and hot so we assume the wait was for it being cooked! It was very tasty too and a nice size for a lunchtime snack.
The waiting staff where all a bit frantic - not sure if it was short staffed? And we had to wait quite a while to pay the bill - which you have to go to the till for - no problem but it does mean you are queuing with people who are just in to buy take away cakes etc - would be nicer to pay the bill at the table but thats a minor point.
All in all our food was very nice which I guess is the main point but the reason I have titled my review the way I have is because the slightly chaotic service, hit and miss menus, slightly grubby feel here and there just mean that for me the overall standard is not what I would have expected at a place with Raymond Blanc's name over the door. Perhaps the issue is the focus is mainly on the Brasserie now???
I'd give this place another go - just because the food is tasty but if the attention to detail isn't improved then I would in future choose from all the other places in Chichester who do offer the whole package!

  • Visited September 2013
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank sarah_gray
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chichester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
33 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Bland, boring, disappointing”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 October 2013

I used to love Maison Blanc, even though the menu was a bit pricey - not only because their warm Almond Croissants are superb, but because it always had a real buzz to it, with customers of all ages packed in, reading the papers, chatting to the (great) staff, etc. Then, last year, it got a makeover - aka, corporate bland-over. What a shame.

Result? Yes, the Almond Croissants are still lovely, but the place has zero atmosphere, no charm and, most irritatingly, less adept staff (must have had a new manager or laid off the permanent wait staff in favour of cheaper part-timers or something, because standards of service definitely slipped, even with things like coffee slopped onto the saucer on arrival, which never would have happened before).

I've tried it a few times over the last year, wanting to give it a chance before writing this kind of review, and I'm still hoping that head office realise their mistake and put it back to how it was, but still no. Still bland, still disappointing.

  • Visited August 2013
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Holly_M_99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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