Whilst New York seems to all be about brunch at the weekends, it seems London has become all about food stalls and one of the great things about the London Bridge area is the food. It seems any tourist that now visits London has Borough Market on their itinerary and that area, on a Saturday morning, is an absolute zoo. SLR cameras, interesting fashion choices and guide books everywhere. The food’s good, but it’s not that good!
The best tip we received when moving here was to, instead, take a stroll down the Ropewalk and visit the Maltby Street Market. Set in the arches of the overhead railway, about twenty food stalls pop up every Saturday and Sunday serving amazing food and drink. The tourist hordes haven’t descended yet, so enjoy it before the secrets out!
After a few visits we’ve figured out our favourites, constructed a still-to-eat list, and split our dishes to maximise the amount we can try. Our first stop is invariably The Toucan for a Brazilian steak wrap (£6, £7 with chorizo). Good steak, great sauce and some crisp salad make this a great way to kick off the day.
For the carnivores the African Volcano is a must. The pulled pork (£9) and chicken (£7) are amazing and I’ve heard the burgers are incredible. Southern Africa prides itself on its barbecuing skills, but what takes these sandwiches to a new level is the secret sauce and buns soaked in their cooking juices. I recommend a knife and fork as these guys can get messy.
For dairy fans the Cheese Truck does an array of amazing looking grilled cheese sandwiches (£5) which are always popular and toasted to perfection.
For something a bit different how about heading over to Waffle On for a duck and plum sauce waffle (£6.50, £7 with a biodynamic egg on top). A great little dish, with perfectly cooked waffles, but the plum sauce was a touch too sweet for me.
After a few bites we like to take a little rest and grab some drinks at Little Bird; a local gin distillery from down the road in Peckham Rye. They do fantastic Gin & Tonics and Bloody Mary’s (£5), my favourite being the elderflower G&T, and is the perfect respite whilst deciding on your next dish.
If Gin isn’t your thing Bar Tazino has a long wine list and a variety of beers. They’re famous for their ham, though, and if you venture inside you’ll see them all hanging from the ceiling.
Time for dessert. There’s loads of options ranging from artisanal ice creams, uniquely flavoured popcorn and creative brownies, but why not try a butterscotch cream doughnut (£2) at St. John’s Bakery. Or, if classic deserts are more your thing, Comptoir Gourmand does beautifully crafted tarts, macaroons and cakes.
So come hungry, and leave wondering why anyone goes to Borough Market anymore.