Don’t be afraid! We are not crazy: we have not the intention to write a Decalogue of places where to eat in London. With just a few days of rest – just consumed – would not be really possible, nor it would be serious!
So what do we tell you? We decided to write five addresses for a whole food day in London, from morning to evening. Five stops – for all pockets – that excited our taste buds.
Let’s go in order, late breakfast time. 09.30am.
Wherever you are take the subway and get to 1) St John Bread & Wine in front of the Spitalfields Market. A bakery – almost French in style and taste – with about 20-25 tables, where you can sit and drink a cup of coffee or tea and eat toasted slices of fragrant bread – with honey or butter and jam – or if you prefer salty tastings. Or choose from the boards to the wall between day proposals and maybe stumbles into a cup of natural yoghurt with tasty stewed apples and a soft brioche. And then enjoy the “view” while eating, a daily fact of passers intent to buy bread (of course). The same owners have a restaurant about a half hour of walking from Spitalfields, looking good but we haven’t tried it.
Well! Leave the St John and you dive in a strong smell of street markets. If it happens on Sunday just behind the St John there’s the Brick Lane market that practically calls you. Less famous – we like to say thankfully – of the well known and touristic Camden. An explosion of colors and fragrances that get you “drunk” before you move to taste: Chinese, Japanese, Indian, Thai, Cuban, Mexican, Eritrea are just some of the kitchens available. And while you’re there – a little ‘dazed through the stalls and have not yet decided whether or not to bite into something – do not wait more, go to the end of Brick Lane Street for a mandatory Bagel break (at 11.30am) at 2) Brick Lane Beigel Bake. Get in line – it is inevitable, but runs very fast – and choose the stuffing: salmon, cream cheese, eggs, roast beef … or even empty. All soft and so tasty that you could eat dozens of them.
Lunch Time. 1.30pm. It is (maybe) subway time again. In London is a must! Direction Holforn or Covent Garden to try a gastropub. What is a gastropub?! A creative “osteria” in our own words. So yes, get off the subway stop and head of 3) Great Queens Street (in the homonymous street at number 32). Warm atmosphere with dark wood furnishings and dishes from the menu or blackboard to choose between seasonal preparations. Meat (fowl abounds) or fish in single courses revisited in a original way. Venison, chickpea pancake with ratatouille and a “touching” raspberries & hazelnuts tart our dining companions. Price: 30-35€ per person.
Tea Time. 5.00pm. Don’t you drink a cup of tea? In London you would be too much offbeat! We avoid to mention the most famous addresses, available in all touristic guides: here’s a not too formal and sufficiently tasty place. In SOHO at 4) Fernandez & Wells for a cup of tea or chocolate and a slice of cake to choose among those on the counter. Loved the blueberry cake!
Dinner time. 8.30pm. And here is a question from the intuitive answer, want you miss an hamburger? No! In one of the seventeen 5) Byron stores (one is near Leicester square) you can taste a good one. In double or single version, classic with cheese or bacon. Wrapped in fresh bread from the oven. Good peel-equipped chips accompanying. Price: 20€ (6.50 to 8.75 British pounds for the hamburger). It will not be the best in London, but perhaps it would win the Roman contest (here Elizabeth Minchilli’s post about it) all dedicated to hamburgers! We still remains with a curiosity about the recommended Bar Boulud, it will be for the next visit in London.
And now after all…
A credit to our fellow travelers for accompanying (and standing) us in this food ride.
A special thank to Katie Parla to have provided us with several of these (and other) “succulent” addresses. A real gold mine. Thank you Katie!
* Images by Tavole Romane, published under a Creative Commons License