from the rooter to the tooter
okay it’s time — bring on the London eats suggestions!
(also seems like the margin problems resolved themselves.)
YES, bring them on! K and I are going in October, and we are looking for good cheap Indian food, vegetarian food, and beautiful greasy late-night kebabs.
Fred, I was in the Globe Bookstore today and they have a Michelin guide for London. So, that might be a good place to start, if you are going top shelf.
Also — there are two excellent books about vegetarian food/restaurants in London. One called “Veggie & Organic London” that I found at the Cambridge Public Library, and another I saw at the Globe today called “Vegetarian London”, which also looks good and is put out by these folks.
haha. i’m not going (yet … that i know of …), cat is! but thanks for the tips!
I recommend visiting the Borough market on Saturday mornings. It’s located across the street from the London Bridge tube stop (not the Borough St. tube stop as one might think). You’ll find fresh and local fruit, vegetables, seafood, meats, desserts, jams/chutneys, indian food, olives, butter, etc. Go early in the morning or else you’ll find yourself wading through mounds of people in the afternoon. The best importer of Spanish goods, Brindisa, has a stall there. They sell an amazing spicy chorizo and also little tins of smoked paprika there. They start a sandwich stall at 11am that sells bbq chorizo sandwiches with roasted red peppers on a bed of rocket that are amazing. don’t be scared off by the queue because it moves fast but once they run out, its all gone.
The most amazing sandwich is suppose to be located outside neal’s yard dairy (but in 2+ years, i’ve never managed to catch him). A fellow named bill oglethorpe has set up a portable kitchen in the past where he makes montgomery cheddar cheese sandwiches with Poilane sourdough and adds 3 different kinds of shallots, leeks, and green onions. Even if Bill isn’t there, you should definitely go to Neal’s Yard Dairy and by some local cheeses for snacking on.
Around the corner is supposedly some of the best coffee in London, Monmouth Coffee Co. They like to tell you where their beans come from.
There’s a baker within Borough market who displays an impressive tower of ‘the best brownies in the world’. i ran into austin and joyce wang near that tower once and we figured there had to be a couple thousand in there. so even though they’re probably not the best brownies in the world, its worth a taste (and if you like corners, they’ll give them to you free because they don’t sell those).
There’s also a great sandwich stall in the alley in between the two major sections of the market that sells roast turkey/cranberry/stuffing or roast pork/apple sauce/stuffing sandwiches. it’s heaven between two slices of bread.
Regarding restaurants, its my general rule that you HAVE to get out of central touristy london to find a decent not ridiculously priced meal. the good thing is that it isn’t too hard to do.
I found the vietnamese enclave in the northeast of london the last time i was there. There were tons of vietnamese grocery stores and restaurants. I found this place to be pretty good (and great value):
Loong Kee Cafe
134 Kingsland Road
London E2 8DY
0207 729 8344
for real british food, winnie and i always go to St. John. If you have a party bigger than 8 and are thinking ahead, you can order the suckling pig which looks ridiculously fabulous. Else, good dishes to order are bone marrow on toast or any rare-breed pigs.
26, St. John St.
London EC1M 4AY
0207 251 0848
For good south indian food, Diwana is pretty good. Dishes tend to be potato-heavy — thus super filling.
Drummond St. NW1
(1 block north of Euston tube station)
London gastropubs are plentiful but you have to be careful as some are very much less ‘gastro’ than ‘pub’. One of the best in my opinion is Anchor and Hope. Top to bottom, the menu is seasonal, fresh, and simple. It’s got a great atmosphere and the service is unpretentious (which is more than you can say for most of the well-known london gastropubs). They don’t take reservations but its never terribly crowded
Anchor and Hope
36, THe Cut, London SE1
0207 928 9898
Southwark tube stop (take a right after exiting the station)
On a final note, if you’ve never tried one i also highly recommend trying a pasty (pronounced past-y, not paste-y). its a traditional snack (or meal) in the UK where a large piece of dough — traditionally made with flour, water, and lard — encloses chunks of beef, potato, and swede (which is sort of like a turnip). you can find them at pasty shops all over the city. They supposedly originated in the southwest of England where the wives of coalminers would make them for their husband’s lunch, and the dough was a form of protection from the miner’s dirty hands.
ok, one last thing. its also worth popping into a grocery store to note all the different flavors of chips (crisps in the UK). they are much more adventurous than the US.
Oh, I’m an idiot. Well anyway, Cat, if you are looking for vegetarian food, now you know what to do…
yum, connie! I hope i can make it to the market — unfortunately the only saturday morning i’m there is right before i get on the plane.
and thanks carl for the veggie suggestions ðŸ™‚
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