We’re anxious to try it! And we did at the Borough Market, one of our favorite places to go in London. Since 1014 there has been a market in this area south of the Thames, first under London Bridge where traders sold fish, grain, vegetables and livestock and then moving to its current location in the 13th century. Where then market-goers would purchase grain to make bread at home or livestock to provide meat or milk, we today purchase the bread, meat and milk (much of it unpasteurized and some from such animals as goats and sheep) directly at the market, not to mention the curries, ostrich fillets, goat milk ice cream, smoked chilli garlic, chestnut honey, darjeerling tea, Cumberland sausage and Gigas oysters. It is a foodie paradise! The farm-to-table concept is promoted as is buying local. Most of the traders are from local counties and are proud to be part of the local, sustainable, locavore movement, although there is a strong international contingent. As Samuel Johnson said, “By seeing London, I have seen as much of life as the world can show.”
This is our fourth visit to the Borough Market in two and a half weeks and it never disappoints. The traders are friendly and welcoming and will let you try just about anything – a few even remember us! From the Pieminister pies (the Kate and Wills and the Heidi are our favorites), Modens Lincolnshire Plum Bread, the fresh cider and perrys (in used whisky barrels!) from New Forest, the Gorwydd Caerphilly cheese from West Wales (just try and pronounce it!), the Victoria’s Plummy Jam from England Preserve – it is truly a “centre of food excellence.” Plus, the nearby Market Porter and The Rake pubs provide a welcome respite to the day. This market day were joined by Simon, one of our London friends, and Sheryl and Donny, friends visiting from New York. Steve and Donny were kind enough to run out 10 minutes before market close to pick us up lunch – jamon serrano, huntsman’s pie, ostrich burger, chicken curry, this yummy creamy cheese that went well with the gherkins and olives – while Sheryl and I continued to drink our Aspall’s Black Currant cider at The Rake. What good boys we have! The debauch continued well into the evening with some more British friends and later another set of friends from New York who just flew into London that evening. Names and pictures have been surpressed to protect the guilty (a post on THAT night and other similar get-togethers may follow.)
If you are ever in London, you must come here. We insist. Consider yourself at home!