August 27, 2013 London UK Europe

Covent Garden, Real Food Market, London

Here I am, in London. This is my second stop, after Moscow discovering the world further... Although I have been to London before, I decided that this time I must plunge into the heart of the city to experience what this capital has to offer in terms of culinary savors and wonders. Believe me, its more than just fish and chips! The capital has two food markets, one on Covent Gardens near the Piccadilly Circus area called "The Real Food Market" and another next to London Bridge called "The Borough Market".

Covent Garden is one of London’s most exciting public spaces playing host to a range of arts and culture events. This hot spot has a history that dates back to the 16th century. From the architectural splendor of its neo-classical covered Market to such world-class arts venues as the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden is a much-loved place for locals and tourists alike. Just walk around the huge pedestrian area, enjoy the cosmopolitan crowd, admire struggling artists on the road sketching art work, playing instruments, the mimes attracting huge crowds... the cafes, the shops, the covered market where you can find amazing things from jewelry, clothes, huge pretzels, to even having your kids names written in Chinese and framed... and much more...

Now for the stuff we care about the most in NGNO - the food market. The food market opens only on Thursdays. I arrived that same morning, checked into the hotel and rushed to the market, as such an interesting event cannot be missed. I knew it would be an extraordinary culinary experience, magically embraced with mouthwatering smells of freshness, cooking and mixes. I went on a tour all around the market, before deciding on what to taste. A lot of local producers offering their best products carefully prepared at their premisses and grilled on the spot for the pleasure of their customers. Some of the companies I recall are Portena, Boston Sausage, Red Gingham Bakery, the Polish Deli and many other artisan producers offering the best their land has to give.

The ambiance is soothing and very relaxed making everyone happy. The whole place is alive with people, food being cooked, people chitchatting, others looking for coins to buy a piece of pie or sandwich, tourists taking photos... its all positive energy. The Real Food Market has a lot of varieties to offer for all tastes: Freshly squeezed orange juice, Argentinian empanadas, pork burgers served in English muffins, grilled beef burgers, sausages, baked potatoes, tarts, delis, chocolate cakes, spaghetti, tartiglettes, crepes, galettes, European cheeses, cheese organic sandwiches, chocolate fudge, paninis, rump steak, chorizo, chicken, strudel, Nutella, bakery products, chicken ciabatta...  are few of the many choices that will make your taste buds dance in joy.

My choice was simple yet exquisite:

  • A grilled pork burger with its seasoning served in an English muffin, prepared with spicy red onion marmalade and Stilton cheese at mountains Boston sausages.

I then moved to another stand where I had...

  • An organic beef burger raised in their farms simply served with a thin cheese slice along with a choice of condiments, ketchup, tomato relish, mustard and sweet pickles.

I was officially in heaven. I spent the whole afternoon touring around, moving from a kiosk to the other, meeting all the happy and welcoming people just trying to absorb what Britain's capital has to offer.

While in London, visiting Covent Garden on Thursdays is an official must-stop for food lovers.

Categories: Street Food





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