One of my favourite places in London that I can go for a walk any time of the year is, without a single doubt, Borough Market! I don’t know why I feel that strongly about this market in particular; all I know is that I love walking around the stalls, see what’s on offer and even taste little morsels of food. I always think that cheese (or even antipasti or cured meats) tastes better there, which is weird, because cheese is just cheese! The variety though is huge. Cheese from Italy, France, Switzerland and from local, UK cheese creameries; you can find literally anything in Borough Market!
Apart from the cheese and its variety, you can also find cured meats from other parts of Italy and continental Europe. I love tasting salami, prosciutto and even bratwurst from Germany. Of course Borough Market is not only about meats or cheese; you can also find a stall with Greek products (do try the herbs and the organic giant beans. They are just divine!), called Oliveology or another one called Taste Croatia that is full of traditional delicacies from this country, such as truffles, oils and even sweets. The stall though that looks (and smells) the most interesting to me is the Spice Mountain. This shop is an absolute heaven for everyone who loves spices! At all times I’ve been in Borough Market I haven’t seen it empty, not even once! I’m sure that if you are looking for something out of the ordinary, you will definitely find it there. And even if you just want to browse, the Spice Mountain can offer you plenty of inspiration!
Another shop I absolutely love (and I promise you, this is the last one I’ll mention) is Tea2You. It’s not only the amazing selection of teas for such a small space; it’s not even the little notes about the teas you will see everywhere. It’s also that the proprietor is really knowledgeable and can help you choose (and yes, taste as well) the perfect brew for you. Give it a go, I promise you that you will not regret it in the least!
Borough Market has such a great history that is a shame not many Londoners know. Starting from the 12th century, when farmers, fishermen and bakers would assemble to sell their goods to travellers, up to 18th century, when it was made clear by the Parliament that Borough Market would remain there for ever and now, we see that Borough Market is so rich and deeply embedded in the culture of London that the one cannot exist without the other! And now it’s not only Londoners or wholesalers that get to enjoy what’s on offer; people from all over the world visit it. Borough Market is a true tourist attraction and one I suggest to anyone visiting London, as they can really find themselves at home there!
If traders are a huge part of Borough Market’s continued success, the street food is another part. From traditional fish and chips to Borough Market burgers and from Indian curries to Spanish paellas, this is really a place to fill yourself! Just make sure you travel to Borough Market on an empty stomach. You will definitely feel full in a short amount of time, it will be a miracle! You can choose anything you fancy there, just like I did all the times I’ve been at Borough Market before. In the past, I’ve tried a roast meat sandwich from Roast to Go, a paella too, so now it was times time for plain chips! Well, plain I think not, as I chose the loaded chips with a generous helping of cheese on top!
I could talk about these chips for hours (seriously it was such a big portion that I had trouble finishing it!), as they were so tasty, even if a bit salt-less! I didn’t mind though, because well… you know chips! My boyfriend and his mum that was visiting chose fish and chips from another street food trader that were also utterly delicious. The cod was cooked to perfection and the chips were cut by hand, something we appreciate a lot. After this lunch it was time for dessert, and what better than a chewy brownie from Bread Ahead? I don’t know what they put inside, but their brownies are to die for (along with their brioches, or little pies, or anything else)! How can you say no?
Now that Borough Market is full of Christmas decorations, it’s even more beautiful! Wreaths, lights and Christmas trees, all of them transform the market into something magical that you cannot but fall in love! It is just gorgeous! Take out those decorations, leave out Christmas, Borough Market is one of the must-visit places in London, all year round. Together with Portobello Market, with its few street food stalls, both of them are some of my favourite street food markets. It’s the variety really that makes all the difference though, and in Borough Market you will definitely find that! Just take care not to visit during rush hour, as you will find it extremely difficult to move around or order from the street food stalls, because of the amount of people. Having that in mind, you are all set!