I was a late developer… to foodie markets! It was years of being in London before I discovered Borough Market. I’m pleased to say it was before the hoards of tourists and out of towners who now make it a weekend destination but still I was very late to the party.
I was introduced several months ago to Brixton Markets. Allegedly going to be the new ‘Borough’ for foodies ‘in the know’. I’m not sure it’s yet there but for me it reminded me of overseas trips to busy undercover markets. Where food stalls adjoin shops selling dishcloths. Upcycled furniture next to second hand ‘tat’. I worry that it’s loosing it’s identity in order to become the foodie destination that in fact everyone is seeking. Rather than filling the units with artisan and authentic outlets, it may be a little too chi-chi and sell over priced olive oils! I’m quite sure that it will be a destination soon but for me, it’s not quite yet.
So I was delighted when a friend was staying for the weekend and suggested we visit Maltby Market. Again a foodie destination and unsure what we were to find there, we arrived hungry and ready to sample some deliciousness. Now don’t tell everyone about it though. It’s currently a delightful small market that has just the right level of bustling going on. Stalls, stands and small outlets hidden in the railway arches serving a good all-round selection of delicious goodies to eat there. Several outside tables and chairs with a constant stream of users enjoying the fayre purchased. It had a wonderful feel about it. We said we felt a little less trendy than most of the other visitors but what we all had in common, was an obvious enjoyment of the wares on offer. We walked up through the market resisting the urge to sample everthing on our journey. Al had seen a TV program with Tom Kerridge who had waxed lyrical about the salt beef and pastrami sandwiches sold there and we were determined that this should be ‘lunch of choice’. Well it’d be rude of us not to check them out….
Served with imported cherry soda and cream soda drinks. Fabulous. We chose the ‘Reuben’ which was a combination of pastrami and salt beef in toasted bread with a side of pickle and coleslaw. We also felt a need to try some Latkes which are Jewish potato rosti – thoroughly recommended. They were huge sandwiches, so I’m pleased we chose to share one and the Latkes between us… meaning that we were still able to sample some more on our return back down the market.
There were items to sell and take away with you but the majority of the stalls were serving goodies that you wanted to eat immediately. Helped of course by the Spring sunshine and general weekend-ness, I’m sure. I shall definitely return to the market for some weekend brunching and munching.
In some of the neighbouring arches there are also a selection of vintage furniture, clothing and objects for sale. Fun stuff and great selection.
Al needed to fill up his stock of Monmouth Coffee so this required braving it and heading to Borough Market. My gin also needed replenishing and the Whisky shop at the back of Leithwaites kindly stocks my favourite, The Botonist.
Fortunately only a short walk away and knowing exactly where we needed to be in the market was quickly navigated and out of there. Wow that place was heaving!
A short bus ride up to Liverpool Street and a short walk through to Spitalfields Market. Again a busy destination for a sunny Spring day but none the less fun and full of goodies. Certainly not as foodie nor as busy as Borough. By this time though our feet were tired of lots of walking and our heads were fairly tired of people so we didn’t stay long and quickly found a spot to sit in the sunshine with a cold refreshing beer.
Our final stop was the furniture store, Interior Addict, who produce reproduction versions of designer pieces of furniture and lighting. What an incredible selection and despite their substantially cheaper cost by purchasing reproduction rather than original, they are still fairly luxury items. There were however various pieces that I fell in love with and could visualise in an apartment far trendier than my own…. I shall dream some more!
Time to head home and rest our feet – G&Ts in hand!